‘NUMISNET WORLD’


Volume 16 Issue 3          Formerly published as the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' - Internet Edition' (Est. 1996)         March  2011


 

 

‘NUMISNET WORLD'

INTERNET EDITION

Edited by Graeme Petterwood. © 2011.

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Any comments published in this privately produced - not for profit -  newsletter do not necessarily reflect the views of the 'Numisnet World' (Internet Edition) nor its Editor. 

Bearing in mind our public disclaimers, any Internet links selected by the authors of this newsletter, are usually provided as a complimentary source of reference to the featured article in regard to: (1) Illustrations -  or  - (2) To provide additional important information. 

Some illustrated items - including their designs and packaging -  may be subject to existing copyright restrictions. In such instances, they may not be replicated or their images reproduced or republished - unless prior permission is sought from, and given by, the originator, owner or licensee of such item, design or packaging.

 

Please consider my conditional invitation to make a literary contribution if you feel you have something numismatically themed that may appeal to a general level of interest and fulfils our stated editorial guidelines. 

As Editor, I am always prepared to look at it - and if need be - assist in presentation.  However, please be aware that not every submission will be automatically accepted for publication.  We regret the imposition of 'editorial control' - but previous experience has necessitated the following conditions.

If common courtesy, and normally acceptable moral standards are not upheld, or, the subject matter is considered to contain plagiarized or defamatory content, or, if it is not considered 'generic' enough for this type of newsletter, or, if the subject has already been covered in depth in earlier editions - it may be refused, held aside or selectively edited.  This is, obviously, not a scientific-style journal - our object is to educate, certainly - but, hopefully, in an entertaining way for the average hobbyist collector.  - G.E.P.

 

Remember - be astute when you are handed change - not all the wonders of numismatics have been discovered yet - and they don't have to be shiny and new! This edition again features an assortment of  'trivia'  that I think is of interest and I trust it will prove educational and entertaining to you as well. 

All or any prices quoted in articles in this newsletter, unless stipulated, are estimates only and they should not be considered to be an offer to sell or purchase the items mentioned or used as illustrations. 

Wherever possible - illustrations (*enlarged or otherwise) are from the authors' own collection or the extensive picture library of the former 'Tasmanian Numismatist' -  Internet Edition and the  'Numisnet World' - Internet Edition. © 1996 - 2011.

(Fair 'acknowledged' use of any original scan is allowed for educational purposes.)

*Please note that the photoscans of items are not always to size or scale.

 

PLEASE NOTE - RE-STATED DISCLAIMER: Where on-line web-site addresses are supplied, they are done so in good faith after we have checked them ourselves - however, our readers are advised that if a personal decision to access them is made - it is at your own risk.

 

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WARNING!!

REPLICAS

COMMERCIAL FAKES & OTHER IMITATIONS

IT IS OF EXTREME CONCERN THAT MODERN INSTANCES OF ‘MADE TO DECEIVE' NUMISMATIC ITEMS ARE APPEARING EVERY DAY. THE INTERNET IS NOW OVERFLOWING WITH CONTACT ADDRESSES IN CHINA.

IT IS NOT A NEW PHENOMENON - I CAN REMEMBER MENTIONING PROBLEMATIC INSTANCES OF CHINESE REPRODUCTIONS HAPPENING MORE THAN A DECADE AGO.

THESE ARE NO LONGER JUST ROUGH COPIES BUT CAREFULLY MADE PIECES THAT ARE EVEN FOOLING MANY EXPERIENCED COLLECTORS AND ARE MAKING THEIR WAY INTO GOOD COLLECTIONS IN SUCH NUMBERS AS TO BE FRIGHTENING.

TOP QUALITY COUNTERFEITING ON A COMMERCIAL SCALE IS NOW OCCURRING - AND IT IS AN INSIDIOUS THING THAT CAN RUIN A HOBBY THAT HAS TO HAVE ‘INVESTMENT’ VALUE AS PART OF ITS SUCCESS.

THE BEST WAY TO KILL NUMISMATIC VALUE IS TO FLOOD THE MARKET WITH ‘LOOK ALIKE’ FAKE PIECES AT A FRACTION OF THE COST OF THE ORIGINAL SCARCITIES!

 

AS AVID COLLECTORS, SOME OF US BELIEVE THAT IT'S NICE TO HAVE A COPY IF A GENUINE ARTICLE IS NOT AVAILABLE TO FILL A GAP - BUT - REMOVE ANY MENTION OF ‘COPY' OR ‘REPLICA’ FROM THE PACKAGING AND THE POTENTIAL FOR CRIMINAL, 0R UNINTENTIONAL, MISREPRESENTATION IS COMPOUNDED UNDER CHANGED CIRCUMSTANCES.

REMEMBER! WE ARE ONLY TRUSTEES OF OUR COLLECTIONS AND EVENTUALLY THEY WILL CHANGE HANDS.

 

Amongst the many queries I receive each month, I have regularly been asked to identify minor numismatic items that are 'not quite right'. Many of these pieces are often deliberate copies of the real thing - or items mistakenly thought to be genuine.

I have related the tale of the infamous Reader's Digest 'Austrian Ducat' as an older and far simpler example, but there are other instances where pendants, brooches and even buttons that have a coin-like appearance, can be honestly mistaken for a legitimate coin.

 

 THE ‘READER’S DIGEST’

1752 AUSTRIAN DUCAT REPLICAS

Imitation - That which is made or produced as a copy, and which is not in violation of counterfeit laws - although many go very close!

 

Over the last 20 years or so, I have read scores of reports from amateur collectors about these things - and it still appears that there is a definite lack of interest in wanting to ascertain - for sure - that the item is a 'gimmick'.  Weighing it is probably the easiest way of checking it out  against other similar Austrian ducats of the same diameter, bearing in mind that  silver is heavier than commercial base metal (as a rule) and gold is twice as heavy as silver. However, no one seems to have scales ......... and, they very often appear to have been bought in our Oz ‘flea-markets’ and other local places where coins and tokens are sold cheaply and quickly.

However, they are a true 'international' wanderer in their own right - I have had previous requests from a French-speaking correspondent from the Ile de Reunion - in the Indian Ocean about 640 kms. east of Madagascar, and, another from Belgium - for information about this little nuisance

The following extract is from the original 'Tasmanian Numismatist' article dated April 1996 - and it is about an item, now over 24 years old - but which is still haunting some numismatists who 'discover' it for the first time.

  

"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.'

Featuring  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 other coins of that time period.

The Ducat 'coin' was, in fact, manufactured and distributed on behalf of the 'READERS DIGEST' organisation some years ago as a promotional gimmick.

It has no intrinsic value whatsoever, but samples regularly turn up in market stalls numismatic junk boxes - at various retail prices - in both bright 'gold' and bright 'silver' finishes."  

                 

1752 Austrian Ducat lightweight advertising gimmick - actual size 20mm

 

These 'Ducats' usually have a dark chemical reaction spot in the centre where they had been attached with rubbery-adhesive glue to a 'Reader's Digest' give-away sheet. The 'spot' can be of various sizes from seriously defacing to barely noticeable. I regret that the original scanned illustrations were not good - but the item was highly reflective. (Illustrations enlarged - not to scale).

With 'look-alike' items like this it is no wonder that the public can be fooled.  I still have the 'silver' sample of the base metal 'ducat' (shown above), which I had obtained many years prior to the time the 1996 article was originally researched and prepared.

As an amateur collector of world coins at that time, I also thought I had something that might be 'rare' as it was not listed in any of the usual publications - and, I was also disappointed - as the correspondent would have been when I advised him of its rather mundane history.

This reasonably well-made 'coin' has a measurement of 20mm. but it weighs less that 2 grms. - a lot lighter than the genuine article, which is usually about  3 1/2 grms. 

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.

 

It has very similar design characteristics and text as the genuine Austrian Ducat coins of the era - enough to be a nuisance for collectors who think that they have stumbled upon an unlisted variety. It has become such a continuing controversial piece that I believe it now should be worthy of its own spot in any exonumiac or numismatic handbook - if it hasn't already appeared.

As far as a value - depending on condition - anything in loose change under an AUD$1.00 might be a reasonable ask!

 

THE STORY OF 7 MACE & 2 CANDAREENS - RETOLD!

 

 

 A genuine Chinese 1904 Silver coin - and copy in Cupro-Nickel obtained in 2006

(note missing 'leg' from Chinese character on reverse) (Enlarged illustrations)

 

The Kiang Nan Dragon Silver Dollars - FACT or FICTION?

 

It was at the 2006 APTA Stamp and Coin Show in Launceston, at which I was accompanied by my grandson who had succumbed to the lure of numismatics, that we spotted a small basket that held a few Crown-sized coins.

As we all know, size and shape mean everything to a new young collector so - on his behalf - I parted with a few dollars and added a 5 coin selection to our ever increasing pile. Later, at home, along with his own coin and banknote purchases - (he got extremely good value for his AUD$28.00) -  he selected a couple of the Crown-sized coins that really took his fancy and passed the other 3 over to me. 

I must repeat that the local dealers, Stephen Cole of Salamanca Rare Coins and David and Kim Newall of The Stamp Place as well as the gentleman from Stephen's Coins & Banknotes of South Yarra, Vic. made his day with their interest in my grandson's interest - which has now flourished more so.

 

The point of this little story is to let you know how I came into possession of a mysterious Chinese 7 Mace and 2 Candareens (Dollar) coin.

With the realisation that some Chinese entrepreneurs are churning out more local fakes - and other world coins as well - than the amount of originals that were minted (only kidding), I gave the coin the beady-eyed attention of the sceptic and paid the low asking price. It was not labelled as a replica..

At first, I easily dismissed it as another good fake because it wasn't  slotted into the good, old Krause  catalogue, but. being the inquisitive old collector that I am, I delved a little deeper to see what its origin may have been.

 

 

Genuine 1904 Kiang Nan Dollar - note tiny Manchu characters at centre of Obverse - KM#145a.12 (Enlarged)

There are also a number of known and listed varieties. For full details, refer: http://ykleungn.tripod.com/kiangn02.htm

 

With Pandora's box wide open, I found that I became of two minds about my coin's authenticity - but, I still couldn't make an informed decision -  I needed more information than a visual opinion of my own. I then contacted collector, Mr. Y.K. Leung of Hong Kong  who has studied the real and the dubious Chinese items at some length - and, at his request, I forwarded some scans to him for his opinion. 

Hopefully, I thought, I will have my mind put to rest - one way or another. For the relative pittance I paid for this coin, whether it be fact or fiction, it had earned its cost in the fun of learning more about the fascinating area of Chinese Fakes, Fantasies and Charms as well as the genuine articles.

 

 

Charm, fantasy, fake - or genuine variety? Illustrations from article by Vladamir Belyaev. (Enlarged).

 

In the meantime, I fossicked around and located some Internet information - with the illustration (shown above) - that gave credence that my new acquisition was a fantasy (sometimes called a 'charm') issue - in other words - a fake.

Vladamir Belyaev, the Russian author of an internet article written in July 1998 entitled,"Set of forgered (sic) silver and gold struck coins.", freely admits that, whilst he is not 100% sure that it may not be a legitimate variety, he considers it as worthy for inclusion in the article as a probable fake.

His illustration appeared to be identical to the coin - and, with certain details on my coin agreeing with his description below, it virtually confirmed my suspicion about mine being a nice fake. Refer: http://www.charm.ru/library/tailandset.htm

 

Obverse:

In the centre, in Chinese script, are the 4 characters of the standard legend - Guang Hsu Yuan Pao (basically, this means 'valuable currency') - at the top centre also in Chinese charcters - Made by Kiangnan Province- and at the bottom 7 Mace and 2 Candareens, on the sides are the mintmaster's initials HAH (H.A. Holmes) and CH (the unknown engraver) and the date 1904 in Chinese numerics.

 

Reverse:

Dragon with flame pearl in the centre. Two English inscriptions - Kiang Nan Province and 7 Mace and 2 Candareens.
Diameter: 39.5 mm (my coin is barely 40mm as measured with a Vernier gauge - nearly close enough)
Weight: 26.7 g  (my coin appears to be about 1oz. = 28.39g - which is about 1.5g heavier - but my scales are not of an instrumental standard)

Dated: 1904

 

   

Author's Kiang Nan Province 1904 Dollar (7 Mace and 2 Candareens) - is it KM#145a.19 - or is it an interesting fantasy? (Enlarged)


A similar coin listed in the KM Standard Catalog of World Coins  as KM# 145a.19 - but, without valuations or any more elaborate description , was impossible to make a comparison with as there was no illustration available.

That was a real disappointment, as I had no other catalogue source of information on Chinese coinage. (The 'variation' without the 4 central Manchu characters at the obverse is not even listed in the "Illustrated Catalog of Chinese Coins" by E. Kann 1996, according to Vladamir Belyaev.)

The reverse of the  'variety' that I have has a 5 pointed star to the left of the word 'AND' - as well as the dot after the word 'CANDAREENS' -  even though this detail is unlisted in the Krause Mishler catalogue, that hint of the mystery coin without the central Manchu characters attributed to  KM#145a.19 kept niggling at me.

We were not talking  about a variety coin worth thousands - I wouldn't think - even if it were real.

However, the estimated value range of the genuine basic known style as shown in the first illustration (top) - Fine  to Unc.- goes from US$15 - $80 (Kann # 99 - 101); US$15 - $150 (Krause Mishler #145a.12 - 145a.14) 

 

I measured and weighted my coin and, as mentioned above, there were very slight - but tolerable - differences in both instances compared to the details supplied. However, I noted from further research that these minute differences seems to be fairly common even with genuine Chinese coins.

Struck coins were produced in England, under the authority of Viceroy Chang Chih-tung, and they  commenced being issued in 1888.

The Birmingham firm of Ralph Heaton had been been commissioned in 1887 to establish the giant Canton Mint from the foundations up and it was an enormous undertaking to have it fully functional by 1889. Even with Western minting expertise the Chinese Mint, which produced the provincial silver coinage, still hadn't reach the level of technological perfection that we equate with our modern Western coinage and an exceptionally large amount of early varieties are known.  Refer: http://ykleungn.tripod.com/ktsilver.htm

To add to the problem, some of the provincial 'Empire' dollar coins were restruck by the Republican government  some years after the initial issues had been made. The silver content varied in quality and ranged from .820 - .900 Fine in various denominations but during successive years, however, in some instances it was debased far lower - and Krause Mishler only list the coins as 'Silver' meaning from as low as  .500 silver content.

 

As I didn't wish to destroy my  coin, I tried several un-intrusive 'home remedy' tests - such as trying to get it to stick to a magnet -  to try and identify if the coin has a decent silver content or if it is only plated. I have read that high silver content will not stick whereas some alloys or plated coins will show a certain amount of 'stickiness' but, from my own efforts, it was a 'hit or miss' experiment at best.

I even used the old face tissue trick over the coin to see if the 'silver' showed through with varying degrees of reflected white - compared to the greyness of copper-nickel or another base alloy - and it actually did show a fair percentage of white in the coin's field. Try it sometime........ it seems to have some validity.

The 'chop' marks in Chinese silver coins weren't made just to decorate the coin but to test the depth of silver as Chinese entrepreneurs are very, very clever and sometimes the silver content is relatively higher than expected in fakes - especially those with a high numismatic value -  it would seem barely worthwhile with this coin .........but who knows, quantity may play a part.........?

Electronic testing or metallurgical analysis is often the only way some of these fakes are detected - but some that have been discovered have had a very basic mistake - like a wrong date for the type or a mintmark being used that is not correct for the minting era.

Chinese made American Morgan Silver Dollars were notorious for these sorts of mistakes - but people are still falling for the trap of buying fakes. The replica makers are also getting highly proficient as well.

 

I have mentioned that my coin is without the 4 central Manchu characters that are on other similar coins from this era, and it is virtually identical with the Internet example even to the strange character at the left of the central major characters of the obverse - which is without its bottom right stroke at the base to form the Chinese symbol for 'Pao'.

The correct depiction should be

That there are at least two coins with this identical difference, leads one to suspect they came from the  same source.

There is another  common 'flaw' evident that points to either a deteriorating die - or a poor copy of an original - being used in the manufacture of these two pieces. The character above the dot on the right side of the obverse has the same damaged right side (thickening) on both mine and as shown on Belyaev's illustration.

 

Slight striation marks, even a  slight porous appearance of the surfaces of some of the characters, and a small area of roughness across the field of the obverse are evident under x10 magnification and hint that this 'coin' may have been carefully prepared from a cast - but these things are not conclusive enough with today's knowledge of mint errors and, no doubt, we have all seen similar flaws in our own modern coinage - otherwise, at first glance, the obverse is standard for a Kiang Nan silver dollar.

As one Chinese coin collector remarked - "Perhaps, I should collect the forgeries!"

 

Internet References:

Chinese Numismatics in Research - Y.K. Leung. Refer: http://ykleungn.tripod.com/kiangn02.htm

Chinese Coinage Web Site - Vladamir Belyaev. Refer: http://www.charm.ru/

 

Other Reference:

Standard Catalog of World Coins - by Chester L Krause and Clifford Mishler - Colin R Bruce II, Senior Editor 1998

 

 

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A BLAST FROM THE PAST!

Exactly ten years ago, an article (see below) written by Mike Nourse of the 'Anchorage Coin Club' - a sister club of the 'Tasmanian Numismatic Society' - graced the pages of the former "Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition" and prompted an interesting 'follow-up' discussion about the continuing future prospects of the small-sized (Copper-Zinc-Manganese-Nickel  Clad Copper) circulation issue U.S. Dollar coins after the apparent failure of the similar sized (Copper-Nickel Clad Copper) 'Susan B. Anthony' Dollar that was issued intermittently during the period 1979 - 1999.

The 'Susan B. Anthony' dollar coins were virtually shunned for all the 21 years they were in production, and, it was only by gearing some types of  public access machines to the coins, that they were forced into use. Economically, the use of a hard-wearing coin makes sense - and, eventually the concept gained some public acceptance alongside the humble US$1.00 greenback paper note - but it was never popular.

In the year 2000, the U.S. Mint decided to introduce a new design and give the Dollar coin idea another chance in general circulation - and the 'Sacagawea' Golden Dollar was born!

It very nearly suffered the same fate as the 'Anthony' dollar - it was, initially, in high demand from the collector market - however, it was looked at with some suspicion by the usual disbelievers and suffered the same inane arguments about its weight properties.

Refer:- http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa040602a.htm

 

...... but - Sacagawea's Golden Dollar held on - and has now assured a place for itself in ongoing U.S. numismatic history!

 

"SHOULD YOU SAVE THOSE

'SAC' DOLLARS?”

An article by Mike Nourse (A.C.C. Member # 94) © 2001

originally published in 'ACCENT' the newsletter of the Anchorage Coin Club of Alaska..

 

2000 US Dollar - featuring Native American Shoshone teenager, Sacagawea - and her baby, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau (Obverse).

(Editor's scan.)

"Why on earth should I spend my nice new Sacagawea dollars?

Look how rare they are!

I can not even get a single one at the bank! ...and look how much the US Mint and the large national dealers are selling them for!

By late next year, I should be able to sell my 40 BU rolls of Sac dollars and buy a vacation condo on the beach in Rio with enough left over to send the kids through college.

Not very likely!

You really do not want to quit your day job and put the retirement fund in Sac dollars.

In the last two years there has been a great deal of interest in modern coinage issues. It is a safe bet that this is the result of finally getting some new coins in circulation in the form of the state quarter program and the new golden Sacagawea dollars.

Many new people are entering the hobby and they seem to be starting their collections with these new coin issues.

We all know that price is a function of supply and demand.

In the case of the state quarters, the supply is absolutely enormous - but the demand is also enormous. A little bit of speculation came in and drove the price of the first few state quarter issues up as high as $75 for a $10 face value roll.

When the price stopped going up, some people started dumping their rolls on the market sending the prices down to $50 or less.

Are they going to continue dropping? I think so.

The demand seems to have stabilized and supply on the market is increasing as more people cash out to preserve their profit.

How does this relate to the Sacagawea dollars?

Again, we have to look at supply and demand. Supply is easy to quantify.

At this time, the Mint has reported that a total of  1.12 billion 2000 dated Sac dollars have been produced.

About 65 percent of that total is from the Philadelphia Mint and the remainder came from Denver (we are just looking at circulation strikes).

No matter how you slice it, the production number is immense!

You don’t think so? Well, for comparison, the entire mintage of all Morgan and Peace dollars over the course of 58 years and five mints amounted to a grand total of 847 million coins struck. This is 273 million less than the one year mintage of Sac dollars so far.

Now that we know that supply is huge, in order to get a significant price increase we will need demand to be even larger. So is the demand larger than the supply? While demand certainly is huge, it does not appear to be larger than the supply.

Because this is not just a one year issue (or just a ten week issue as in the case of the state quarters) people seem to be willing to wait to get these coins at the bank for face value. Therefore, at this time, Sac dollars do not command any premium other than the normal dealer mark-up needed to cover expenses and make a little profit.

There are no dealers advertising in the back of the weekly coin publications to purchase Sac dollars at any premium above face value.

What will happen next to the price of 2000 dated Sacagawea dollars next year when you can no longer get them at the bank?  My guess is….not much.

The premium that dealers charge may increase slightly and you may even see an ad or two looking to buy them at a very slight premium above face value. But the price will not skyrocket. The supply of 1.12 billion coins is simply too huge .... and, remember,  that most people in the non-collecting public do not really care whether the shiny new golden dollar they give to the grandkids is dated 2000 or 2001 or whatever. There is one more large difference between the state quarters and the Sac dollars that allowed the quarters to achieve a healthy premium above face value while the dollars are not likely to be valued substantially above face value for quite some time into the future. That difference is cardboard! Say what?

Yes, cardboard, in the form of inexpensive folders that have been produced in staggering quantities to house collections of the 50 state quarters.

Because of the multitude of different designs and the frequency which they are issued (a new one every ten weeks) it has become incredibly popular to try and get one coin from each state, and the folders (or sometimes maps) are issued to house the coins.

Folders do exist for Sac dollars but - with only two coins so far, a P and D, - it does not make the most impressive display at this time. Another difference is that there is a defined end to the state quarter program in the year 2008 with 50 designs while there is no way of knowing how long the dollars will be made. The quarter program may be extended slightly but it will not go on forever.

 If you have any doubt about this, just ask you local dealer how many state quarter folders have been sold, and how difficult the folders were to get last year when they could not be produced fast enough.

So, back to our original question: Should you save your Sac dollars or spend them?

Well, we are coin collectors, and as such we should certainly save whatever we need for our collection.

Usually at a minimum this means one each of the Philadelphia and Denver issues. Many of you are building roll sets of coins, and by all means put aside a roll of each. But those 40 rolls? My advice is to spend them and watch the different reactions you get from the store clerks. All of the evidence points to no significant price increase in the near future. But the evidence could be wrong!"   - Mike Nourse.

 

2000 Sacagawea Dollar featuring soaring Golden Eagle (Reverse).

(Editor's scan.)

 

...... AND THE CONCLUSION?

At the time, Mike advocated - and it was a sensible philosophy with which we must agree - that all numismatists should put aside a few pristine examples for our personal collections and then get on with using the rest for what they were designed for - to SPEND!

*P.S. - It should be noted the that designer opted to take her US$5,000.00 design commission, in single coins struck on specially burnished planchets - and that the Glenna Goodacre's company have also now produced a substantial range of autographed, privately packaged, Sacagawea dollar coins for sale!

It is also rumoured that the model also may have taken part of her fee in dollar coins.

Wise choices! - as the early Sacagawea items are now becoming numismatically important.

Refer:- http://www.smalldollars.com/dollar/add004.html

 

**P.P.S. - The current numismatic market value price for the 'P' & 'D' earlier dated Sacagawea coins in MS65 condition is about US$4.00 each.  Shortly after the original article was written, the San Francisco Mint also started producing limited amounts of these coins, and, those with the 'S' mintmark are the prime ones for collectors' attention - some are retailing at about US$20.00 each in Proof condition.

The 2001S is the main one to watch for - as it is selling currently at about US$150.00 retail - and any listings on eBay are commensurate.

 

WHO WAS SACAGAWEA?

Compiled & revised by Graeme E. Petterwood. © 2001-2011

 

Sacagawea (sometimes spelt Sacajawea or Sakakawea) was a Lemhi-Shonone Native American woman born c.1787 in Idaho.

In 1800, at about 12 years of age, she was captured by the Hidatsa Crow  tribe, who were camped near another tribe, called the Mandan, near the mouth of the Knife River in North Dakota.

At this time, Native Americans were usually referred to as 'Red Indians' by settlers with European heritages.

A French Canadian trapper and fur trader, Toussaint Charbonneau, who was living with the Mandan, saw the 14 y.o. Sacagawea, bought her and married her in 'Red Indian custom' - to be his 'chattel' - as he was already legally married at that time.

When explorers Merewether Lewis (1774 - 1809) and William Clark (1770 - 1838) eventually arrived at the Knife River, at the icy start of the plains Winter, and built Fort Mandan as a cold -weather quarters, they used Charbonneau as an interpreter and asked him to accompany them and their 26 men, in their two pirogues and six dug-out canoes, on their trip into the unknown, when the weather permitted in early April.

The ultimate goal of the expedition was to find a way across the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Coast.
At that time Sacagawea, now 17 y.o., was already heavily pregnant and Lewis recorded the birth of her baby son on February 11th. 1805 in his diary,
"Sacajawea (sic) gave birth to a boy with the aid of a rattlesnake’s rattle - two rings of it (administered) to the woman... broken into small pieces...she had not taken it more than ten minutes before she brought forth."

The troublesome Charbonneau (often referred to as 'Sharbono' or 'Charbono' in Clark's journals), was reportedly lazy and always complaining.

On April 7th.1805,  with his Indian-law 'wife' Sacagawea, with their baby son, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau - nicknamed 'Pomp' (or Pompey) by Clark - strapped to Sacagawea's back, Charbonneau and the group set off westwards towards the Pacific Ocean on one of the greatest overland expeditions ever.

It soon became obvious to Lewis and Clark that it was not Charbonneau - but his wife -who was going to be invaluable.

Clark formed a close paternal-style relationship with Sacagawea - and, indeed the knowledge that Sacagawea had accumulated - her language skills, her ability to tell them about flora and fauna - and, eventually, her diplomacy, when she reached her Shoshone homeland -  was that little edge that made all the difference between success and failure..

 After many hardships and adventures, the expedition reached the Pacific Ocean - and, some of this good fortune can be attributed to Sacagawea’s presence - as a woman and child signified that the group, although armed, was not an aggressive one.
 

Little definite detail is known of Sacagawea once she disappeared from the recorded pages of the expedition’s history - a lot of supposition and rumour exists, but, it is known that she accompanied her husband back into Missouri when the expedition returned to St. Louis on 23rd. September 1806.

Charbonneau tried farming at Florissant near St. Charles for a year - but couldn't make a go of it, so he decided to go back to fur trapping - and it is believed, by most historians, that Sacagawea was virtually abandoned by Charbonneau  just after this - or at least she was relegated in importance.

Charbonneau was an easily disliked man - and he liked his wives and other female Indian companions to be very young and able to work hard for him.

In 1837, at age 70, he is known to 'married'  his fifth 'wife' - a 14 y.o. Assiniboine girl. - but, he was also known to have had other  'spare helpers'.

Charbonneau died in 1840.

 

The last confirmed report of Sacagawea was apparently a sighting of her, back in  in St. Louis, in 1811, when she would have been about  24 years old. 

She was reported to be, apparently, alone at that time - wandering the streets  - wearing discarded white women's clothing.

Apparently, she had also received some financial assistance from Clark when Charbonneau moved to the Missouri River and had taken a job with the fur company started by Manuel Lisa and Pierre Chouteau -  the Manuel Lisa Fur Company.

After some persuasion by William Clark, Sacagawea's infant son, Jean Baptiste (aka - Toussaint Jnr.) Charbonneau, remained in St. Louis when she went to re-join husband.

Sacagawea also had a daughter - Lisette (Lizette) - while they were at Fort Manuel Lisa (this outpost was abandoned after an attack by Indian allies of the British in March 1813) - but little is known of the baby girl except that she was eventually also placed in William Clark's care..

It is generally accepted that Sacagawea 'probably' became pregnant again after she re-joined Charbonneau - and, it was reported that she died on December 20th., 1812 from complications - or 'a putrid fever' - after the birth of her daughter, at Fort Manuel Lisa.

 Reports say that another of Charbonneau's wives cared for the baby.

Another report (now disputed) puts her date of death much later, on April 9th. 1884, at Wind River reservation in Wyoming - and a grave site in that area states that she is buried there* - but, one wonders whether Sacagawea would have left her baby back in 1812 - whatever the case, she will now live on as one of the few non-allegorical women depicted on the circulating coinage of the U.S.A.

*Refer:- http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=pv&GRid=2321&PIpi=77385

 

Later records indicate that Lisette and 'Pomp' were legally adopted by Clark on August 11th. 1813  after the reported death of Sacagawea in 1812.

 

It was long rumoured that Lisette had died in her infancy - at age 1 - but, more recent document discoveries have refuted that, and it is now believed that she was brought back to William Clark, in St. Louis, by another Indian woman from Fort Manuel Lisa, and, was actually aged 21 at her death from an unknown illness after returning from an educational  trip to Europe financed by Clark.

The boy, however, would continued to be be cared for and educated, by Clark, as a son - and, as a well travelled adult who had lived in Europe - mixing with royalty - Toussaint (Jean Baptiste) Charbonneau Jnr. would leave a far broader mark on the history of the United States of America than his biological father ever did - notwithstanding the relationship with Sacagawea.
 

As no actual image has been handed down of Sacagawea, an idealised portrait conceived by Glenna Goodacre of New Mexico - with Native American Randy'L He-dow Teton of Fort Hall, Idaho as the model  - was chosen for the new $1.00 coin.

The simple depiction ideally - and thoughtfully - represents the attributes of the young woman who contributed so much to the opening up of a huge part of the North American continent.

 

   

Special edition - 2000 Sacagawea 'Golden Dollar' presentation pack - commercially produced.

(Featuring a portrait of Randy'L He-dow Teton).

 

Main References:-

Story of the Great American West. - Compiled by Reader’s Digest. 1977.

The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of the Old West. - Compiled by Peter Newark. 1980.

The Story Behind the Story. - Excepts from an article by Graeme Petterwood - Tasmanian Numismatist, September 1998.

 

Recommended Internet References:-

The Sacagawea Dollar - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacagawea_dollar

Lewis & Clark Journals:-  http://lewisandclarkjournals.unl.edu/index.html

Toussaint Charbonneau:-  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toussaint_Charbonneau

Jean Baptiste Charbonneau - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Baptiste_Charbonneau

Lisette Charbonneau:- http://www.lewisandclarktravel.com/index.php/site/sacagaweas_children_in_st_louis/

 

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NEW LITERARY OFFERING!

 

Cheques and Paper Money

of the

National Bank of Tasmania Limited

1885 - 1918

by Roger V. McNeice OAM

 

 

A new book on the Cheques and Paper Money of the National Bank of Tasmania 1885 -1918 was due to be

released in late February 2011. Compiled and written by internationally-known  and respected Australian numismatist and author, Roger V. McNeice OAM, of Tasmania, the book covers the Cheques and Promissory Notes issued by the Bank for the short period of its existence from 1885 to 1918. All the known branch cheques are fully illustrated with a rarity scale and values.

 

 

Front cover of the new book compiled and written by Roger V. McNeice OAM.

© Roger V. McNeice 2011.

 

The book illustrates all the known issues of cheques and promissory notes for all the bank’s branches throughout Northern Tasmania where its principal area of operation occurred.

Cheque issues from the bank are scarce - and considerable interest, in those that were issued, is anticipated.

Rare demand notes are also covered with explanations of the issues.

Any numismatists, with an interest in this sort of vital information in regard to Australia's early banking system, will appreciate the  considerable research that has gone into the preparation of this book.

It is the first book of its type covering Tasmanian Cheques and Bank Promissory notes - and it will be available in hard copy and CD direct from the author in mid-March 2011. . Price details will be available shortly.

 

 

'TASMANIAN NUMISMATIC SOCIETY'.

GENERAL MEETING 2011.

We have also been requested, by Mr. Roger McNeice OAM., and the current Executive Officers of the Tasmanian Numismatic Society,  to advise those readers who are members of the T.N.S. - or those of the numismatic fraternity who are interested in becoming members - that a general meeting is being planned for later this current financial year. 

It is hoped to have it organised for late April or early May 2011.

Further details, of time & place,  will be advised in the Society's official newsletter the "Tasmanian Numismatist"- and by other means - as they are forthcoming.  All financial members and guests will be most welcome.

It is also envisaged that, amongst other matters of importance, that a potential  T.N.S. Coin Fair 2011 will be on the agenda for discussion.

This envisaged event would be subject to an assessment of members' interest, and, the current capability to stage such a function at a mutually convenient time for maximum effectiveness for the coin collecting public - and, of course, the availability of suitable secure premises.

 

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GENERAL INDEX UPDATE.

'TASMANIAN NUMISMATIST - INTERNET EDITION' 1996 - June 2007

'NUMISNET WORLD' July 2007 - December 2010

The detail of contents of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition' and 'Numisnet World' can be seen at the following links. Copies of articles are usually available by email, upon request from the Editor or the original author - or, if directly accessed, subject to those copyright provisions laid down in our current terms of use.  Articles will not be posted by mail services.

Early issues of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition', from 1995 - 1999. were permanently archived in 2000 and articles are not linked directly.

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/aug03.htm  - 1995, 1996 - 1997 (Volumes 1 and 2) Archived. Content detail only.

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/Sept2003.htm  - 1998 - 1999 (Volumes 3 and 4) Archived. Content detail only.

 

By referring to the 'Newsletter Archives' or 'Search' function located on the Home Page, you can directly access all current Volumes online.

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/tns.html  - January 2000 (Volumes 5 - to date).

In January 2006 it was decided to grant each new issue its own URL link. which would henceforth appear in the current Index.

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/mar07.htm  - 2006 (Volume 11)

The final Index of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition'

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec07.htm  - 2007 (Volume 12 - Issues 1 - 6)

 

Full details of initial 'Numisnet World' - incorporating 'Tasmanian Numismatist'  (2007)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec07.htm  - (Volume 12 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2008)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec08.htm  - (Volume 13 - Issues 1 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2009)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec09.htm  - (Volume 14 - Issues 1 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2010)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec10.htm  - (Volume 15 - Issues 1 - 12)

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'NUMISNET WORLD' - December 2010 Reminder

 

Issue 12. December 2010:-  http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec10.htm

Australian Federation Pre-decimal Coins - "The Mints that made Oz Coins" is a condensed version of the coin minting process. It is presented to new-comers to Australian numismatics as a fairly simple aid - for a complicated subject - and, it  is designed, basically, to be a 'first-step' up the ladder of knowledge. It is not meant to be a replacement for a properly constructed Australian coin catalogue of which we are blessed with several each year..

Grading Paper Bank-notes - A quick way to assess a banknote's condition before you start to haggle about price. What to look for to push the price down - if you're game enough to challenge a dealer's grading! At least, you can walk away without wasting money on an over-graded piece of paper or plastic..

Friendly Reminder! - If you are a "Tasmanian Numismatic Society" member - your Annual Subs. for the next 12 months (2011) are due in January.

 

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'NUMISNET WORLD' - January 2011 to date.

VOLUME 16

Issue 1. January 2011:-  http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/jan11.htm

HAPPY NEW YEAR - 2011 - Note Montage - Every one of our previous New Year newsletter header montages had a story to tell - and this one, the first for 2011, was also selected to create a moment of interest about international currency, the old and the more recent. This is a small essay of homework to start off a new year and, perhaps, a lifetime of searching and understanding the fascinating and intricate world of banknotes et al..

HOLIDAY READING - We have re-presented three articles from 2003 that have snippets of information that may prove to be useful to our new collectors - or a reminder to our older friends about forgotten aspects of our hobby, Numismatics is always growing and exploring a whole spectrum of knowledge.

(a) - Hi Ho! Silver! -  A review of the impact that Silver has had on our Australian coinage.

(b) - and ... at the other end of the scale! - We must remember, that these days, the intrinsic value of coinage has virtually disappeared - and more common metals - such as Aluminium - are more likely to be used with a stated value to signify purchasing worth in our commercial world.

(c) - Unofficial Orders, Decorations & Medals - A preponderance of facsimiles and fantasy items, in the personal decorations area of our hobby, are lurking in cupboards all around the world just awaiting future generations to stumble upon them and to ask the questions-  What are these - and what are they worth?"  They are well-made - even crafted from noble metals in some instances - and obviously have value - they even look official - BUT - they are not! 

In years to come it may be hard to find out the 'raison d'etre' of these fantasies - so if any do come into your possession. make sure that any product information is passed along with the item to maintain its provenance and resale value

Editor's Personal Note - The ANS (Anniversary of National Service 1951 - 1972) Medal. - It took 50 years for the Australian Government to be forced to acknowledge the part that underage National Servicemen played in our more recent military history. Politicians are still in a state of denial about some aspects of the old National Service scheme but, at least, we have a medal  to commemorative the sacrifices made between 1951 - 1972 - including some of which are still ongoing for some 'Nashos'.

The issuance, in 2008, of the ADM (Australian Defence Medal) also took up some of the slack in the area of neglect suffered by those Regular and Reserve force personnel who had nothing to show for years of service to our nation

 

Issue 2. February 2011:-  http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/feb11.htm

'TIS MUNNY IN MY PURSE!' - The story of Charles Earl Bowles (aka Bolles/Boles/Bolton and T.Z. Spalding) - better known to those who like to study Old Western history as 'Black Bart''. This is another fascinating tale of retribution for a perceived abuse perpetrated by Wells Fargo against a man who had a long memory and a desire to get even. A retribution that caused him to rob, at least, 28 of Wells Fargo's Concord stage-coaches over a period of 8 years.

Some reports indicate that  the polite 'Gentleman Bandit' may never have even loaded his shotgun before a robbery. 

His mysterious disappearance a month after his release from San Quentin Prison still has us baffled - and a Wells Fargo reward that went unclaimed.

THE GREY FOX - an observation. - Bill Miner was another stage-coach robber who never killed or used profanity - another character who visited San Quentin Prison..

THE FRANKLINS! - A retrospective look at a Tasmanian Numismatic Society commemorative medallion which was issued to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the arrival of Sir John Franklin and his wife, Jane, Lady Franklin to Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) in 1837, to assume the Governorship of the island.

NORTHERN TASMANIAN NUMISMATIC & PHILATELIC EVENTS 2011 - A schedule of forthcoming events in Northern Tasmania has been kindly supplied by our good friends from Hobart, David & Kim Newell of "The Stamp Place". See you there!

 

Issue 3. March 2011:-

WARNING! REPLICAS - The plethora of replicas, counterfeits etc. coming out of China at commercial rates of production are sounding alarm bells right across the numismatic community. A look back at some items that were early precursors of the high quality fakes  -  'made to deceive' - pieces is again timely.

BLAST FROM THE PAST! - "SHOULD YOU SAVE THOSE 'SAC' DOLLARS?”  - a reprise of an interesting article written a decade ago by Mike Nourse of the 'Anchorage Coin Club'.  Ten years on, we take another look at the revival of an economically sensible numismatic idea that had nearly died, due to the apathetic negativity of an unimaginative and money lazy U.S. public, at that time. How things have changed!

WHO WAS SACAGAWEA? - an updated reprise, that is still continuing on - with the story of the Native American woman who inspired the U.S. 'Golden Dollar' coin.

The story of Sacagawea is a tale with more questions than definite answers. It is woven mainly from rumour and legend - with a few pieces of written evidence thrown in to give it some credence.

NEW LITERARY OFFERING! - a further, highly informative, literary offering from leading numismatist and author, Roger V. McNeice OAM, covering issues of Cheques and Paper Money of the National Bank of Tasmania Limited during the period 1885 - 1918. Available both in book or CD format from the author's agents.

 

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'NUMISNET WORLD'

(INTERNET EDITION)

 

The 'NumisNet World'’ (Internet Edition) newsletter has been provided with space on this privately maintained Internet site and is currently presented free on a monthly basis with the aim of promoting the hobby of numismatics. 

The ''NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter abides by the same basic guidelines suggested for the official 'Tasmanian Numismatist' newsletter.

The ‘Tasmanian Numismatist’ newsletter is the only official newsletter of the ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society’ and it is published periodically and distributed by post, or hand delivered, directly to members of the Tasmanian Numismatic Society and selected associates and institutions. All matters pertaining to the T.N.S. are re-published with the permission of the current Executive Committee of the ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society.

Any literary contributions or relevant and constructive comments regarding numismatics are always welcome.

Please note that all opinions expressed in material published in the ''NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter are those of the authors, and not necessarily those of the Editor. 

ALL comments in linked articles are the responsibility of the original authors.

 

PRIVACY PROTECTION

The 'NumisNet World' (Internet Edition) newsletter complies with the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act.

Under this act, information about individuals can be stored and published only if: the information is already contained in a publicly available document or if personal information has been provided by the individual to whom the information relates, and if that individual is aware of the purposes for which the information is being collected.

All information published by the ''NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter is either publicly available, or has been voluntarily provided by writers, on request from the Editor of the ''NumisNet World'  (Internet Edition) newsletter.

While the ''NumisNet World' (Internet Edition) newsletter may hold writers' addresses and other details for the purposes of communication and copyright protection, it will never make such addresses or details available to any member of the public without the permission of those involved.

The 'NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter also respects the privacy of our readers. When you write to us with comments, queries or suggestions, you may provide us with personal information including your contact address or other relevant information. Your personal information will never be made available to a third party without permission.

 

DISCLAIMER

All details of a commercial nature, organisations, items or individual arrangement to buy, sell or trade are provided in good faith as information only, and any consequent dealings are between the parties concerned. 

The 'NumisNet World' (Internet Edition) newsletter takes no responsibility for disagreements between parties, and also reserves the right to only feature information that it considers suitable in promoting the hobby to our readers. Deadline for any literary contributions or amendment to copy is 7 Days prior to the beginning of the month of publication.

 

COPYRIGHT

The contents of this Internet newsletter, and all prior issues - included the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition' - are copyrighted ©, but anything herein can be fairly used to promote the great hobby of numismatics; however, we do like to be asked by commercial interests if they wish to use any of our copy. 

This permission, however, does not extend to any article specifically marked as copyrighted © by the author of the article. Explicit permission from the author or the Editor of the  NumisNet World' '(Internet Edition) newsletter is required prior to use of that material.

 

The Editor,

Numisnet World - (Internet Edition). 

P.O. Box 10,

Ravenswood. 7250. Tasmania.

Australia.

Internet Page: http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/tns.html

Email: pwood@vision.net.au

 

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