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ACCent: The Monthly Newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club

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Membership Meeting 1st Wed. each month, 7 PM, Central Lutheran Church, 15th and Cordova

Vol. 24  No. 9



   It started in 700 B.C. when some Greeks found little nuggets of pale gold on the banks of a river and convinced traders they were precious "tears of gods" and that they should take them in trade for their goods. The pale gold nuggets were a mixture of gold and silver called electrum.

    They were very resistant to corrosion but soft enough to be cut to specific weights. The idea of using lumps of precious metal in trade caught on. Electrum was rare so the market could be controlled. The nuggets were heavy enough to be weighed but small enough to carry around. Greek city-states started punching a mark in the nuggets as a guarantee that they weighed a particular standard amount - a drachma.

    Electrum was in use for quite a while before a Phoenician separated the gold from the silver. After that a monetary system was set up around these two precious metals. Later copper was made into money for poor people.

    This system of precious metal money continued in the western world. The Romans had dime sized precious gold and silver coins but made big copper coins popular. The sestertius made of copper and its alloys had the ruling Caesar on the front and on the back a god that was symbolic of the current state of the empire. Sometimes they put a major event on the back such as the subjugation of the Jews.

    After the ancient Roman empire fell the western world went into the dark ages. People traded mostly in goods and some copper money but gold was just for the rich and the church. Very little silver was around. All this time the eastern world was using simple cast copper coins (cash) then tried paper money in the Ming dynasty. The paper rotted but Chinese cash continued.

    Precious metal money circulated in Arab countries. Their thin, large diameter coins were like documents. They stated the place of origin, the ruler and the date. It was illegal to stamp symbols into coins lest they become worshipped. Some seeped through Venice along with long lost knowledge of the ancients. After being recoined with a Christian cross some circulated in Europe with a growing amount of ancient wisdom.

    Then late in the 1400's Europe discovered silver - lots of it. The renaissance was on. The biggest silver mine was named after Jesus Christ's grandfather Joachim. The word for mine in German is thal so big silver coins from the big find were Joachimsthalers. That was shortened to thaler and taler then the Dutch daalder and daler then went to England and came to America as the dollar

    Silver coins and their fractions became the basis of most transactions. Copper coins remained the money for small day to day trade. Gold was still the precious metal for big trades even when paper came out as a promise to pay later in precious metal money.

    Gold value has changed up and down several times over the millennia but while our country was growing it stayed about twenty dollars an ounce. There have been times in the distant past when gold was just unobtainable. But now gold is sold in bullion but it costs about two thousand dollars an ounce. Now that is precious!

    Probably the ancient Egyptians are responsible for this. They are the ones who saw value in gold. They wanted to live forever and gold was the one metal that seemed to last forever. It became precious to them and they built things with it. To ancient Greeks the ancient Egyptians were ancient but their gold things looked new. So now to those who want their riches to last forever gold is precious.




    A design competition for Alaska's Denali state park quarter is going on. The leader in the race has a bighorn dall sheep in the center of the foreground and mount McKinley in the background.


    These wild sheep are known to inhabit high altitudes, and this view of mount McKinley emphasizes the fact that it is actually the tallest mountain on the planet. Everest sits among other peaks in the high altitudes of the Himalayas. Mount McKinley stands in central Alaska. It is a much longer climb from the base to the top of mount McKinley.

    This design is the current favorite of two of the main judging groups. The final choice is yet to be made but it looks like we may have another winner among state quarter designs..


How to protect against counterfeits


    Buy your coins only from a knowledgeable and reputable dealer. Every dealer (no matter who they are) has unknowingly handled a counterfeit coin at sometime or other, but all legitimate dealers will immediately refund your money if by chance a forgery should somehow slip by them. This guarantee is always 'without time limit' (with the exception of certain "big" auction-houses, who after they have paid their consignors could care less). Another advantage of buying your coins from dealers who publish illustrated price-lists (or from auction) is the excellent chance that, should a forgery slip by, it will be spotted by another dealer (or other classical numismatic expert) and it will be withdrawn, or if it has been sold already the buyer will be immediately informed and offered a refund.



If  you call a penny a cent and set aside the ones dated 1960 with unusually small zeros...

You are probably a numismatist...

And you should belong to the Anchorage Coin Club.



August 3rd Membership Meeting

    Door Prize: "American Nickels of the 20th Century". Set of 4 nickels (Buffalo, Silver Wartime Jefferson, Jefferson, and Liberty Head) won by Jim Sabrowski.

    Membership Prize: "Jefferson and Buffalo Nickel Mint Mark Collection". Set of 6 nickels (3 Buffalo, 3 Wartime Jefferson) won by Jack Van Trease.

Comments on our club's July 9th Summer picnic at Abbott Loop Park by club president Tim Burke.

    Member Bill Fivaz donated 4 very nice coins for a special coin auction in memory of Roy Brown. At July Board meeting, Board discussed and recommended that club do a donation auction at the September 7th meeting. If approved, club members asked to donate good coins for the Roy Brown Memorial Fund auction. Membership voted and approved.

No presentation that evening. In its place was a group discussion about our memories of Roy Brown over the years we knew him.

Following the monthly coin auction the membership meeting concluded.

Next meeting September 7th.





Last: FOPRO - Proof, a coin struck in the highest grade possible and sold to collectors.




August 17th Board Meeting


    Meeting called to order by club president Tim Burke at the New Cauldron Restaurant/ University Center.

    Following review of correspondence, Board addressed the Roy Brown Memorial Coin Auction on September 7th. Members will be asked to bring in and donate good coins for this special auction. Among the items donated will be a 1886 Martha Washington $1 U.S. Note in VF condition.

    Board then discussed the next coin show: October 15th / 16th (Sat/Sun). Carl confirmed those dates are OK at the University Center. Board OK'd an ad to promote the show. An ad will be placed that will have a coupon that can be redeemed al the show for a coin. At our club's September 7th membership meeting, it will be announced that club members can reserve tables for the show. Only 10 tables available.

    September 7th meeting will feature a presentation by John Larson on the subject of "Foreign Currency". Stan Mead will provide the food (pizza, chips, and sodas).

Board meeting adjourned at 7:15 PM......Larry Nakata/ Secretary.

Next meeting September 21st.




    One of Roy's greatest ambitions was to make coin collecting one of the best hobbies in Anchorage.

    This auction is an event to raise money to create a fund to be used in advancing the knowledge of coins and the desire to collect them. Whether putting permanent displays in local museums, filming presentations for TV, or having traveling coin shows the use of this fund will be up to you - the members of this club. The point is to have a fund to draw from to achieve Roy's desire to make coin collecting a great hobby in Anchorage and Alaska.


Coins Submitted for Roy Brown Memorial Coin Auction
(as of this newsletter)

Donated by Bill Fivaz

1. 1879-S $5U.S. Gold Certified ICG EF40

2. 1921 Morgan Dollar VAM 1A Certified ICG MS62

3. 1926-S U.S. Commemorative Oregon Half Dollar in EF

4. Year 2000 American Silver Eagle BU condition.

Donated by Clifford Mishler

1. Silver Round Prooflike Dual Date Obverse- 2007 ANA 116th Anniversary Convention in Milwaukee. Reverse-2009 75th Anniversary of Milwaukee Numismatic Society. Only 100 minted.

2. Silver Round- Clifford Mishler "Thank You" coin. Only 200 minted.

Donated by Larry Nakata

1. 1962-D Silver BU Roll of Franklin Half Dollars.

2. 1886 Martha Washington $1 US Note VF

Donated by Loren Lucason

1. Encapsulated proof state quarter of Florida (Roy's home state).

2. 50 Dong Viet Nam Note Crisp BU.









Alaska Mint wishes the best

to the family of Roy Brown.







ADDRESS :_________________________________________________

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TELEPHONE (HOME):________________________________


DUES: Regular; Full membership for those living in Anchorage $25

          Sponsored membership - first year $15

          Senior, Handicap, & Associates outside Anchorage area $10

          Junior; those under the age of 17 $5

          Life membership $250

Send application and dues to :

Anchorage Coin Club
P.O. Box 230169
Anchorage, Alaska 99523

E-mail Address:









TICKETS: $5 each or 5 for $20


President: Tim Burke

Vice President: Carl

Secretary: Larry Nakata

Treasurer: Stan Mead

Board Member: John Larson

Board Member: Robert

ACCent Editor: Loren Lucason


#91 Mike Orr:

#110 Bill Fivaz: e-mail

#210 Tom Cederlind: