7 Issue 4
MEMBERS' BBQ and MEETING
Making up for the Christmas/New Year Members' BBQ that had to be postponed, the rescheduled event of Saturday 16th March was very enjoyable - after an amount of early morning trepidation and an equally deterring weather report.
Several apologies from our Northern members were received, but the dozen people that braved what appeared destined to be a very inclement day were rewarded with good company, food and conversation.
This editor and his wife had travelled from Launceston, 123 miles to the north, on Friday afternoon to stay as guests/helpers of friend and fellow T.N.S. member Chris Heath - and we even found the trip to Hobart was more interesting than usual..
The next morning started off with mists around the nearby wooded foothills accompanied by gusty winds with more than a touch of moisture in them. Erecting an additional tent or a protective tarpaulin proved virtually impossible earlier in the morning so we decided to make do with the shelter already available - and our gamble paid off!
We were eventually provided with a window of opportunity and tried to make the most of it!
By 11.00a.m. the winds died down, the sun came out and many of the clouds had dispersed just as the first guests arrived at T.N.S. President Chris Heath's front door. Chris had kindly agreed to host the informal event, firstly on behalf of the Society and secondly to celebrate the removal of a very large and very dangerous eucalyptus gum tree from his backyard.
The improved vista and space provided us with an ideal BBQ area - and the men with some good conversation on the 'how it was done' aspect and the ladies with the 'what to plant there' alternative.
The conversations drifted in and out of numismatics, between mouthfuls, with quite a bit of interest being generated about the 1931 'Dropped Die' Penny that has recently been featured in the numismatic press - including the 'varieties' article written in the Australasian Coin & Banknote Magazine (CAB) by our T.N.S. member Ian McConnelly.
Regrettably, Ian could not attend the meeting due to his essential commitments at Cadbury's world famous Chocolate Factory which is just down the road a little way - so close and yet so far.
Those members who now have Internet access has grown considerably, so ways and means of improving our hobby by this means of technology were also discussed at some length - although we did not arrive at a solution of physically attracting more local members by this method which is usually only used by the 'committed' already. We will need to cast our net wider.
With the continuing problem of public liability insurance costs hovering over most Australian social, recreational and hobby clubs our Society has still not arrived at a financially feasible option in regard to a fixed meeting place.
The insurance problem is now attracting attention all over Australia with state Governments looking at ways to cool down a situation that is madly out of control to the point that any gathering or public event - even Anzac Day - is in jeopardy of cancellation.
However, the current relatively informal meeting format has proven to be popular with some members who feel more comfortable in raising matters in a conversational way than in a more formal setting. The consensus of opinion of those members at the BBQ Meeting was that we should continue in this fashion - at least in the short term - partly because of necessity and also because of the closer social camaraderie that had been re-established.
For those members, with cause, who had expressed deep concern about the 'price of progress' in regard to Australian and Allied war graves in France and Belgium that are threatened by airport and roadway extensions I have been in contact with Senator Eric Abetz, Liberal Senator for Tasmania - who had kindly officiated at the launch of Roger McNeice's book 'Honoured Grave' - and promptly received the following message:
Thank you for your email. Yes, I am aware of the so-called “progress” in Belgium and France. The Minister for Veterans Affairs, Danna Vale MP, has already made the Federal Government’s views on this known to the countries concerned and representations are being made at a high level to give expression to the sentiments that you outlined in your thoughtful email. Be assured the Government will do all within its power to retain the graves.
Liberal Senator of Tasmania.
Thank you, Eric, for the re-assurance that all that can be done will be!
In mid 2001, Larry Nakata from the Anchorage Coin Club - our sister club in Alaska - sent a supply of some of the circulating U.S. State commemorative Quarters that had been released at that time. The majority of the coins were from South Carolina and Connecticut and both featured a tree in the reverse design - so with this in mind it seemed an appropriate time to distribute some as 'souvenirs' of the event we were attending.
Those who did attend were: Frank and Kath Hrinkow, Phil and Elaine Nichols, Roger and Jill McNeice, Graeme and Ailsa Petterwood, Chris Heath, Kevin Hogue, Graeme Nossister and Tom Williamson.
By 4.00 p.m., after the members had safely departed, the rain restarted and the wind gusts became very impressive and remained so all night. A night to sit at home and watch a movie on TV and nibble on the left-overs - and that's what we did.
The first leg of our return trip to Launceston on Sunday morning was a bit bumpy but, as we headed further North over the Midlands it calmed down and there was sufficient sunshine streaming into the car to burn our arms - such are the varieties of our beautiful Tasmanian Autumn weather. Our island home has it all!
The totally informal 4 hour BBQ meeting proved to be pleasantly successful so the invitation to the Hobart members to come North in a few weeks time (Saturday 11th May) was proffered by my wife and myself and we will extend our hospitality in a likewise manner. It goes without saying that all T.N.S. members are welcome- as long as we know you wish to attend.
Again, the next meeting will incorporate a BBQ lunch (under cover if the May weather in inclement) to commence about 11.00a.m. for 12.00 sit-down. It will go on until the food runs out or the last guest leaves.
Due to the distance that will need to be travelled by those Southerners - or other out-of-towners who plan a day trip to Launceston - we suggest that each group appoint a designated driver for the return leg in case our Northern hospitality is too liberal.
This event will be completely casual and informal in dress and meeting content, but we do expect a little decorum, however!
A time and place for 'Horse-trading' will be allocated for those who want to do a little - but normal Society rules apply.
We will organise most of the 'necessities' for the out-of-town visitors but those with dietary requirements or preferences will need to BYO or advise of those needs prior to the event. (A little 'numismatic donation during the day would also help cover the costs if we need to do the 'shopping'). Local members, partners or invited guests, could help by bringing their own 'sausages' and sweets. Some liquid refreshments will be available but, again, if you have preferences, BYO.
Most members know how to get here - or knows someone who does - but it wouldn't hurt to send a RSVP if possible to:
Ph: (03) 6339 1898
P.S. Evidently the 13,000 rock concert attendees got rather wet - but their enthusiasm was not dampened and the concert went on as scheduled. The newspaper reports state that additional water from hoses was used to keep the audience 'cool'! Oh! to be that young again!
EDITORS AWARD ENTRIES.
We would like to remind readers that literary contributions of a suitable numismatic nature - or ideas that can be developed - are welcome for possible publication with full credit given. Each 12 month period, between 1st Nov. - 31st Oct., the current Editor of the Internet Edition has offered to select one national and/or one international published article, which is deemed to have been of particular interest, and will make an Editor's Award which can be taken in the form of either :-
1. a full membership subscription to the Tasmanian Numismatic Society for one year, plus a Certificate of recognition, or
2. a numismatic oriented item selected by the Editor to the value of an annual subscription to the T.N.S., plus the Certificate or,
3. another appropriate item selected by the Editor to the value of an annual subscription to the T.N.S., plus the Certificate
The form of the Award will be in consultation with the winner in each category and a brief notification will usually be made in the December Internet Edition unless circumstances warrant otherwise. As this Award is a personal one made by the Editor, in gratitude for readers' involvement in making the newsletter more interesting, the Editor's decision will be final in all instances.
Members of the Tasmanian Numismatic Society are still eligible for any literary awards offered under the Society's guidelines.
JERRY REMICK'S MAILBAG
Our Canadian International Life Member, Jerry Remick, has managed to continue sending a few articles although his current health situation is not 100%. As a follow-up to our recent articles about the introduction of the Euro currency by the European Monetary Union, Jerry has highlighted the fact that there are some other states that will piggy-back on the currency because of their traditional ties with some of the Union members.
Euro coins and banknotes are now being used as sole legal tender by 6 other small countries in Europe besides the 12 that make up the official European Monetary Union - and some of these countries also apparently plan to mint their own coinage that will be valid in all countries using the Euro. The countries that fall into this bracket - and the currencies formerly used are:
1. Andorra (French Francs and Spanish Pesetas).
2. Liechenstein (Swiss Francs).
3. Monaco (French Francs).
4. Montenegro (Deutsch Marks).
5. San Marino (Italian Lire)
6. Vatican City (Italian Lire)
In 1992, Montenegro and Serbia formed the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and they decided on a common currency of Para and Novi (New) Dinara. However, many people from Montenegro went to Germany seeking work and sent back the Deutsch Marks that they earned. In 1999,Montenegro decided to make the German DM. their sole official legal currency.
Serbia also found itself using the DM. as its defacto currency and even though the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia still has its own official currency it has been overshadowed by the Euro which replaces the German DM.
It is believed that Monaco and the Vatican City are already well down the planning path to issue their own Euro coins and some other EU countries are already planning to issue commemorative coins to supplement their basic issues.
The French Franc which has been used for years by 4 French Overseas Departments and 3 Territories will also disappear in favour of the Euro. Most of these Departments and territories had their own coins and banknotes before switching to the French Franc and now, like those other small European countries that were caught up in the Euro changeover, they have no option but to follow suit.
The Departments and Territories are: French Guiana, and the islands of Guadaloupe, Martinique, Matotte plus Reunion, St. Martin, St. Pierre and Miquelon. The latter named territory of St.Pierre and Miquelon, is a small island located just south of Newfoundland in the North Atlantic while French Guiana is a large department situated on the northeast coast of South America and covers an area of 35,135 sq. miles.
The territory of Reunion is also an island in the southwest Indian Ocean while another island department, Mayotte, is in the Comoros Archipeligo midway between the northern tip of Madagascar and the African Coast.
Mayotte voted to remain French in 1976 instead of joining the Federal Islamic Republic of Comoros.
Guadaloupe, Martinique and St. Martin are all Caribbean islands - and as part of St. Martin belongs to the Netherlands Antilles it also uses the Netherlands Antilles Gulden notes which may be changed as well because the Netherlands is a partner in the European Monetary Union.
Other island territories of France such as French Polynesia, New Caledonia, Wallis and Futuna have been using the Colonial Francs Pacifique and at the time of writing the future of this currency is still unclear. (A$1.00 = 0.59 Euros = 70 Pacific Francs).
As a postscript , Jerry advises us that Euro banknotes do have a identifying feature to establish where they were printed.
Each country in the Union has been allocated a prefix letter to be used with the serial number.
Austria (N), Belgium (Z), Finland (L), France (U), Germany (X), Greece (Y), Ireland (T), Italy (S), Luxembourg (R), Netherlands (P), Portugal (M), and Spain (V).
Should the other three nations, who have been invited to join the Union, take up the offer they will be allocated:
Denmark (W), Sweden (K), United Kingdom (J).
For further reference, the 'STANDARD CATALOG OF WORLD PAPER MONEY, MODERN ISSUES 1961 - 2001.' edited by Colin R. Bruce II and Neil Shafer and published by Krause Publications, is ideal.
Also, Jerry reminds readers that the annual 24 page 'Coin & Paper Money Calendar' is still available from Krause Publications. It is numismatically attractive and hugely informative about the rare items featured and it can be easily obtained.
700 East State St; Book Dept.
Iola, Wisconsin 54990.
BANKNOTES OF THE
'TÜRKMENISTANYŃ MERKEZI DÖWLET BANKY.'
Hands up those of you that know where Turkmenistan is - and if you answered that it borders the Caspian Sea and is tucked away to the east of Iran and to the north of Afghanistan you would be right!
Turkmenistan has an area of 488,100 sq. km and is the home of about 4 million people who are descended from nomadic Seluk Turks who settled uneasily into the area in the 11th. century. It has often been subjugated by its neighbours and from 1924 until 1991 it was a member of the Republics of the Soviet Union.
In October 1991, with the gradual break-up of the former Soviet Union of Republics, Turkmenistan declared its independence and a new constitution was adopted in 1992 to provide for an executive presidency.
Further information is available at: http://www.departments.bucknell.edu/russian/facts/turkmen.html
Jerry Remick has been looking at the banknote issues of the Turkmenistan Republic, which is now 10 years old, and particularly those issued by the 'TÜRKMENISTANYŃ MERKEZI DÖWLET BANKY' (the Central Bank of Turkmenistan).
The complete type set, in Uncirculated condition, of Turkmenistan's 13 type banknotes consisting of 10 denominations has a catalogue value of US$69.00 - according to the 'STANDARD CATALOG OF WORLD PAPER MONEY, MODERN ISSUES 1961 - 2001.' edited by Colin R. Bruce II and Neil Shafer. (For three type notes, the value taken was the least expensive of two different dates.)
The colourful, attractively designed and inexpensive paper money of Turkmenistan is an ideal starting point for those collectors who wish to own a complete type set as a secondary collection to any collection of coins, tokens or medals. It is particularly attractive to junior or beginner numismatists who may wish to make banknotes their primary interest in the hobby.
Initially, in 1993, the undated Turkmenistan banknotes were rated at 1 Manat (100 Tenge) = 500 Russian Rubles, and were issued in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 500 Manat, but, in 1995, the same designs from 20 Manat upwards were re-issued as dated notes. (Illustration below features the initial Turkmenistan 1993 issue from 1 - 500 Manat notes.)
Like many emerging former Soviet nations, Turkmenistan has suffered from an extremely high rate of inflation - from 1990 through to 1998 the average yearly rate was 663.4%. In January 1996 it took about 2,400 Manat to buy US$1.00 - but by November 2001 it took about 5200.
This inflation spiral has led to the issuing of several larger denomination banknotes in 1995, 1996, 1999 and 2000.
The 1,000 Manat first appeared in 1995 and in the following year the 5,000 Manat was printed without any major changes in the basic design. This design also remained on the 5,000 Manat notes issued in 1999 and 2000. However, in 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000, issues of a 10,000 Manat note were produced with varying degrees of changes - but that denomination was the only one to show changes for each year of issue. The complete type set therefore consists of single type notes for 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1000, 5000 Manat - and four type notes, so far, for the 10,000 Manat.
Notes issued from 1993 - 1995 were produced for the Government Bank of Turkmenistan and from 1996 to date for the Central Bank of Turkmenistan. The Turkmen language notes in 1 and 5 Manat are lithographed and the other denominations which show the president, Saparmurau Niazov, are engraved with Intaglio printing.
The obverse of the notes also show a variety of buildings, including the presidential palace, as centre-pieces and the reverse features the Turkmenistan coat-of-arms.
Security features include a rearing Arabian horse as a watermark, micro-printing, a geometric design with a back-to-front register, a vertical security thread as well as metallic seal in either gold or silver with a latent image of stars and crescent.
The variations on the 10,000 Manat note are mainly in the buildings featured, size of the president's portrait and slight variations in his dress or accoutrements.
Jerry thanks banknote dealer, Gary Snover of San Bernardino, California USA for his co-operation in obtaining research samples of both the Euro and Turkmenistan currency and advises US readers that Gary can be contacted for all stock inquiries at:
P.O. Box 9696, San Bernardino
CA 92427 - 9696
CHATHAM ISLANDS TRADE NOTES
STILL VALID FOR 2002.
For those of us who still dimly remember 'the 2000 Millennium' and the plethora of banknotes and coins that rolled of the presses or jingled from the minting machines, it seems as if one attractive series of non legal tender notes has still survived - in the short term at least.
The term 'non legal tender' is rather a misnomer as these notes from the New Zealand Chatham Islands are in fact still legal on the islands up until the end of this year and are accepted in trade at par with the official N. Z. dollar.(NZ$1.00 = A$0.824cents)
Issued by a group of Chatham Islands businessmen, under the banner of the Chatham Islands Note Corporation Limited as a Millennium commemorative dated 2001, these Tyvek Polyefin paper notes produced by Chan Wanick Security Printing Ltd. of Thailand have proven to be extremely popular.
A second issue was necessary - to differentiate the two - the first had a silver hologram and the second had a gold version on the common front which only varies by the amount stated in writing or numerically.
The reverses are:
$3.00 - Horse racing c.1900
$5.00 - Group of early Islanders. c.1900
$8.00 - A group of 5 statues located on Chatham's Pitt Is. works of German sculptor, Woytek. The first place to see the sun.
$10.00 - Abe Jacobs, World Class wrestler and Chatham Is. citizen.
$15.00 - Sunderland Flying Boat that was a regular means of transporting materials and people during the 1950's.
As the Chatham Islands were recognised as the 'First to see the Sun' at the 'start' of the new millennium these trade notes have achieved a status as a tourist and numismatic collectible which will soon disappear from the scene.
The mintage figures for each denomination were: 28,571 for the $3, 21,429 each for $5 and $8 and 14,285(6) for the $10 and $15. Only 1,000 sets of the 5 denominations were specifically reserved for collectors.
In Australia, Jerry Remick tells us that limited supplies of the collector notes still can be obtained from:
Leon G. Morell
55 King St; Brunswick East.
Ph/Fax: (03) 9481 4210
We trust that this issue of the Internet Edition will continue to provide interesting reading. The name of this Internet based newsletter is in keeping with the content so, bearing in mind our disclaimers, the Internet links selected are usually complimentary to the featured article in regard to: (1) illustrations and, (2) additional important information.
Please also bear in mind that some Internet links are of a temporary nature.
BLASTS FROM THE PAST
When I consult my record of events in years past that might be of numismatic interest during a current month, I usually find that something of great historical significance is staring me in the face. During the first 10 years from the founding of the T.N.S. in 1963 we had major events in Africa and the Middle East taking up many, but not all, of the world's headlines. Obviously, there are many events that shook the world in a more dramatic fashion in each of the years that I have mentioned but, to illustrate the point that history can be a catalyst towards our numismatic educational process, I have picked out one only random event from the current month during that 10 years that seems to reflect an aspect that we can relate to within our hobby.
The events mentioned in this period have mostly been commemorated by the issuance of either a medal, medallion, coin or banknote; and in some instances the impact was more profound on the socio-economic structure of its host nation than could ever have been envisaged at the time - and the consequences are enshrined in history.
On April 27,1964 the United Republic of Tanganyiki and Zanzibar (Tanzania) was formed;
on April 1, 1965 King Hussein was made heir to the throne of Jordan;
on April 3, 1966 Russian satellite 'Luna 10' became the first lunar orbiter;
on April 21, 1967 an Army coup toppled the Government in Greece;
on April 4, 1968 Martin Luther King was assassinated;
on April 28, 1969 General Charles De Gaulle resigned as President of France;
on April 24, 1970 China launched its first satellite;
on April 17, 1971 Egypt, Syria and Libya formed the Federation of Arab Republics;
on April 18, 1972 Bangladesh was admitted to the Commonwealth; and
on April 1, 1973 the Value Added Tax (VAT) was introduced in Britain.
THE REVOLT OF 1967
As a follow up to our last newsletter article about the 'Pontian ćgis' of Ancient Greece - a comprehensive information package about the April 1967 army coup in Modern Greece was selected from an article published by the Tufts Hellenic Society and, as an example of how events flow over and create numismatic history, we have added a little research about the change in coinage that occurred shortly afterwards.
"George Papandreou of the Centre Union party became prime minister of Greece in November 1963. Earlier, he had charged that the elections of 1961 had been rigged. He had also suggested that the army, with support from the monarchy, stood in the way of democracy. King Paul died in 1964, and his son came to the throne as Constantine II. Constantine clashed with Papandreou over the king's political powers and control of the armed forces. Constantine dismissed Papandreou in 1965. Political confusion developed, and the government remained shaky. In an effort to achieve a stable government, Parliament was dissolved on April 14, 1967, and new elections were called for May 28. But these elections never took place. On April 21, 1967, Greek army units equipped with tanks and armoured cars seized the royal palace, government offices and leaders, and radio stations. Three army officers then set up a military dictatorship. This junta consisted of Colonel George Papadopoulos, its leader; Brigadier General Stylianos Pattakos; and Colonel Nicholas Makarezos. The junta suspended important liberties guaranteed by the constitution. It prohibited all political activity, and made mass arrests. It replaced the leader of the Greek Orthodox Church, imposed harsh controls on newspapers, and dissolved hundreds of private organizations of which it disapproved.
Constantine remained head of state, though powerless. On Dec. 13, 1967, he tried to overthrow the junta. He failed, and he and his family then fled to Italy. The junta named a regent to substitute for the king. Papadopoulos named himself prime minister and minister of defence.
THE RESTORATION OF DEMOCRACY.
In May 1973, a group of naval officers led an unsuccessful mutiny aboard a Greek destroyer. The government said the mutiny was part of an attempted coup supported by King Constantine. In June, Papadopoulos announced the end of the monarchy and proclaimed Greece a republic. He became president in August and began to prepare the country for parliamentary elections. On November 25, 1973, a group of military officers who opposed Papadopoulos's liberalizing policies overthrew the government. The group's leader, Lieutenant General Phaidon Gizikis, became president. The conflict between Greece and Turkey over Cyprus was renewed in 1974, when Greek officers led Cypriot troops in overthrowing the government of Cyprus. Turkey claimed that Greece had violated the independence of Cyprus, and Turkish troops invaded the island. After several days of fighting, a cease-fire was signed to prevent full-scale war between Greece and Turkey.
The crisis in Cyprus and economic recession paralysed Greece's military government. Shortly after the cease-fire was signed, the military government collapsed. Military leaders invited Constantine Caramanlis, who had opposed Greece's military government, to become prime minister again. On July 24, 1974, Caramanlis was sworn in as prime minister of a civilian government. In November, Greece's held its first free elections in more than 10 years. Caramanlis was then head of the New Democratic Party. The party won the elections by a wide margin. In December, Greek voters chose to make the country a republic rather than a monarchy. Parliament adopted a new constitution in 1975. Civilian control over the military was gradually established. Papadopoulos, Pattakos, and Makarezos were found guilty of treason for their roles in the 1967 revolt. They received sentences of life in prison. The New Democratic Party retained its majority in elections held in 1977. In 1980, Caramanlis resigned as prime minister and George Rallis succeeded him. Caramanlis was elected president, and held that post until he resigned in 1985. In 1981, Greece joined the European Community."
TUFTS HELLENIC SOCIETY: http://www.tufts.edu/org/hellenic/history-modern.html
THE COINAGE OF THE REPUBLIC OF GREECE.
From 1967 until 1973 Greek coinage continued to feature effigies or heraldic logos of King Constantine II even after his unsuccessful counter coup in 1967 and he and his family were forced to flee to Italy.
A limited mintage series of Kingdom of Greece commemorative style coins - but without the King's effigy and celebrating the 'Revolution of 21April 1967' - were released in 1970 and included 20 Drachmai (.900 Gold), 50 Drachmai (.835 Silver) and the 100 Drachmai which was struck in both precious metals.
The Junta had appointed a 'regent' who ruled in the deposed King's name until a Republic was proclaimed in June 1973 after the naval mutiny that reportedly had received the backing of the former monarch.
Up until that time, the lower denomination Aluminium coins 5, 10, 20 Lepta and the Copper Nickel 50 Lepta, 1, 2, 5, 10 Drachmai were still being issued by the junta dictatorship under the Kingdom of Greece legend and, where appropriate, were still showing the deposed King's portrait.
Typical Lepta and Drachmai issued 1954 - 1973
However, in late November 1973 another coup took place and, after the overthrow of the 'colonel's junta' by another military group, the Greek Third Republic's coinage and currency was conceived and born.
Most of the coins were in base metals e.g. Aluminium, Brass, Nickel-Brass or Copper-Nickel
Lepta and Drachmai 1973 Republican Coinage
After the collapse of the second military backed government in mid July 1974 and the re-establishment of a civil democratic system, the new low denomination Republican coinage dated from 1974 onwards was produced in the usual base metals of Aluminium, Nickel-Brass alloys, Brass and Copper Nickel - but from 1988 - 1992, the 1 and 2 Drachmai were produced in Copper and some commemorative coins from 100 Drachmai (Drachmes) up being produced in varying Silver content coins (.650 - .900 - .925 Fine are noted) as well.
Gold has been reserved exclusively for commemorative coins 2500 - 20,000 Drachmai (Drachmes).
Modern Greek Drachmes Coinage 1988 -
Paper currency issued by the Bank of Greece continued on 'as usual' without any obvious references to the coups or the declaration of the republic.
Standard Catalog of World Coins 1901 - Present. Edited by Clifford Mishler and Colin R Bruce II. (Krause publications).
Additional Internet Information.
Internet News is provided for information only and we ask that readers refer to our usual disclaimers in reference to any business dealings that may occur between parties. Selected and/or edited items are re-published with permission or can be regarded as public domain.
'Caveat Emptor' has always been a watchword to numismatists when buying anything - but it appear that the other side of the coin can occasionally turn up to make things even more difficult for those sellers who are of a trusting nature.
For those buyers who make use of eBay Auctions, or similar Internet auction facilities, please don't waste sellers' time and money in making them start chasing after reneged deals or worse still, defaults in payment.
If you can't really afford it - don't try and fool everyone, including yourself, that you can.
If you do strike temporary difficulties in meeting payment obligations once the item has been forwarded, please, do the right thing quickly and return the goods or contact the seller and continue to work towards an honest and mutually satisfactory solution. Once you go onto a 'black list' it often takes a lot of hard work to restore your good name!
The following is a copy of an email sent to eBay Auctions by a very reputable dealer, 'The Stamp Place', of Hobart, Tasmania. Unfortunately, this experience is a lot closer to home.
Details of the alleged perpetrator from Burnie, Tasmania were supplied to eBay Auctions for their attention.
'The Stamp Place' can be contacted through their homepage at: http://www.tazitiger.com/ for further particulars.
We have also had a note from 'The Stamp Place' that they will be visiting the north twice in the next few months
"We will be at Max Fry Hall, Trevallyn on Saturday 18th May and at The Albert Hall for the Queen's Birthday long weekend in June. Hopefully we can see you at one or both of these fairs. Regards, David Newell."
As usual, fellow Northern Chapter T.N.S. members should take the time to visit these venues and introduce themselves to David. There will be a good range of numismatics along with the philatelic items on show and, as usual, David will give great service to fellow Society members.
This article was selected from amongst the local news-desk items on WBAP 820 News in Fort Worth-Dallas, Texas - and, while the concept still only refers to the USA at this time, the success of the experiment could have world-wide ramifications in regard to promoting the idea of the cashless society.
WBAP 820 News can be accessed at: http://www.wbap.com/goout.asp?u=http://www.nbc5i.com
Quote - DALLAS, Mar. 5 - Associated Press:
Don't be surprised the next time you order a Big Mac with fries and an attendant asks, "Would you like to use your toll tag with that?" It's the latest attempt to bring high technology to fast food.
McDonald's is beginning an experiment at two Dallas and three Plano locations. After a motorist registers, windshield-mounted tags used mostly to pay tolls in North Texas can be used to purchase that behind-the-wheel breakfast, lunch or dinner.
'TransCore', a Dallas company that developed the electronic toll-collection systems used by the North Texas Tollway Authority, will make the tags and readers used in the fast-food drive-through lanes.
Equipment installed above a drive-through lane will scan a motorist's tag. An attendant will then ask the customer whether he wants to use the cashless system.
McDonald's owners hope to shorten drive-through waits by 15 to 20 seconds per transaction. They also hope to lure more customers who don't want to get out of their cars or who don't carry enough cash to buy a 'Happy Meal'.
McDonald's does not accept credit cards, except at a few test sites in other areas of the country. The tag-reader equipment is being furnished free to McDonald's during the test period.
Similar trials with McDonald's have taken place in New York and Los Angeles.
Before enjoying that fast food on the fly, motorists with toll tags will have to take an extra step. They must enrol in TransCore's 'PassKey' program, which is used to pay parking fees at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and Love Field, several parking garages and at the EDS and Mary Kay corporate campuses.
Toll tags, which can be obtained at no cost, have limited use beyond basic toll collection. PassKey technology, which costs US$1.50 a month, offers more uses. Toll tag users can activate a PassKey account for US$2.
At McDonald's, once the customer receives the food, the system deducts the amount from the customer's PassKey account.." Unquote.
OUT OF AFRICA
As a follow up to the 'Out of Africa' memo in our last newsletter, readers may be interested to know that between the beginning and end of March a staggering US$2016.5 Million plus 50 kilograms of gold plus four boxes of untold size of 'raw gold' has been 'directed ' to this email address by numerous 'African' sources as previously discussed.
All that is required in return, for you to obtain a percentage cut of these alleged huge amounts of money, is for you to provide full name, addresses, email, fax, phone numbers etc. - just enough for 'verification' of your identity - and eventually also open a bank account or make accessible your existing bank account to use as 'depository for the money'
Caveat Emptor!! There is no money!!
Enough personal information from innocents can provide sufficient grist for the fake document people to set up any number of bogus ID's, to apply for passports and travel papers, access to bank accounts or obtain credit - all using your particulars.
MISCELLANEOUS Q & A's
This is not an offer to professionally evaluate items or an offer to purchase or become directly involved in commercial dealings. The most interesting or most frequently asked questions will be answered - to the best of our ability - through these columns in a general manner as well as immediately and directly to the questioner if possible.
All names and direct contact addresses that may be supplied will be keep anonymous.
Recent Search Report Queries.
A correspondent from Belgium has recently requested information from the searchable archives about that old 'Austrian Ducat' dated 1752 with the legend 'TU DOMINE SPES MEA' on the reverse.
Unfortunately, the records with the explanatory article had been deleted from this archival area as they were over 5 years old, so it was a case of resurrecting the original hard-copy newsletter. This extract is from the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' April 1996.
1752 AUSTRIAN DUCAT
'Some time ago a correspondent to the 'Australian Coin Review' (now incorporated into the 'Australasian Coin & Banknote Magazine') mentioned having found, what appeared to be, an unlisted Austrian Ducat dated 1752 bearing the legend 'FRANC. D.G. R.I.S. A. GER. IER. REX.' with the portrait of Francis of Lorraine on the obverse and the legend 'TU DOMINE SPES MEA' on the reverse. It was very similar but 'not quite right' in comparison to others of that time period.
The 'coin' was in fact manufactured and distributed on behalf of the 'READERS DIGEST' organisation some 12 years ago as a promotional gimmick, and samples regularly turn up on market stalls in both 'gold' and 'silver' finishes.
These 'coins' usually have a dark chemical reaction spot in the centre where they had been attached with an adhesive glue to a 'Reader's Digest' give-away sheet.' - April 1996.
With replica items like this it is no wonder that the public can be fooled.
I still have a 'silver' sample of the base metal 'ducat' and, prior the time the original article was researched and prepared, I also thought I had something that might be 'rare' as it was not listed in any publication.
I was also disappointed, as the recent correspondent would have been, when advised of its rather mundane history.
The reasonably well-made 'coin' has a measurement of 20mm. and weighs less that 2 grms. - a lot lighter than the genuine article - but, of course, it is now an interesting numismatic item of some small note in its own right - if collectors are aware and accept it for what it is.
Unfortunately, there are many other commercial organisations that legally manufacture gimmicky pieces, such as buttons, brooches, pendants etc. with so many coin-like features that the unwary or unknowing amateur, in particular, can fall into the trap of mistaking them as numismatic in origin. Ironically, it can also happen in reverse.
In the 1980's when I was only starting to become deeply interested in coins I misidentified an Athenian Greek bronze coin with its traditional owl, for a piece of costume jewellery and missed out on a great bargain. My recommendation to the owner to try elsewhere was heeded and I was thanked for my advice when a good result was achieved. Ignorance was not bliss in that case.
The moral of the story is - initially, try to accumulate a small basic library that covers as broad a field as possible from Ancients to the modern issues. The books don't have to be the most comprehensive or even the newest but, at least, they should give a collector a good indication of the coins within his/her area of interest and an idea of the others that may catch his/her attention from time to time. Many economically priced catalogues can be obtained from reputable dealers or fellow numismatists that are just 'out of date' but suitable for identifying the older coins in your collections.
Other word searches were noted for "Halfpenny", "King George Commemoration Medallion", "Madonna and Child" and "Pitcairn". Unfortunately, lack of date for the halfpenny, which King George's medallion and more specific questions about the other items did not allow us to identify the information need. So, if you make use of our Search facility for general information, please be as precise as you can with your query and check our new Miscellaneous Q & A's section in the next issue - or even send a brief email to our e-post box at: email@example.com
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