While talking about the hoard of coins that dates back to the time of William the Conqueror in England, someone said that they wished they could find treasures like that in the United States. That prompted me to talk with metal detector enthusiasts to hear their stories.
Post Norman Conquest coins found in Sommerset, England (Pippa Pearce/© The Trustees of the British Museum via Smithsonian Magazine)
One of the people I spoke with regularly uses a metal detector around the Eastern Shore of Maryland and into Delaware. Although most of the coins found are from the 20th century, many of the finds include artifacts leftover from earlier settlers. They have found some older copper coins, buttons and bullets from the Civil War, and utensils dating to the colonial period.
The leader of a small group of enthusiasts travels the midwest along know migration trails. Some are now roads and highways, while others have returned to nature. They regularly find artifacts of life on the move. Although they rarely find money, the items they find have made their way into museums and university research centers that study the lives of the western migrants.
Finally, someone who has explored eastern Washington, Idaho, western Montana and Canada discovered artifacts that confirmed and expanded the stories of border disputes in that area. In that era, the disputes were not about security but about who claimed the profit from the resources.
Although metal detector finds in the United States may not find anything more valuable than a few coins, bullets, and buttons, they do find the evidence of history. Unless you stumble over another Saddle Ridge Hoard, finding history can be as gratifying.
And now the news…
August 29, 2019
Shortly after the Battle of Hastings in 1066, a wealthy local buried a trove of 2,528 coins in what is now Somerset, England. Featuring the likenesses of both Harold II—the country’s last crowned Anglo-Saxon king—and his successor, William the Conqueror, the hoard is the largest collection of post-Norman Conquest coins found to date. → Read more at smithsonianmag.com
August 30, 2019
Manitoba lottery officials modify their machines to close a loophole exploited by gamblers. 1:32 When was the last time you saw a 50-cent piece? → Read more at cbc.ca
September 1, 2019
In mid-September, Macquarie Mint will release 500 Red-Back Spider $1 coins as part of its aptly named 'Deadly & Dangerous' collection. There are six more in the series, ranging from the dingo to the great white shark. → Read more at lifehacker.com.au
September 2, 2019
Better known for lagging, sagging, floundering and falling, Canadian currency now boasts a distinction both impressive and unique: It pulsates. Well, one $10 silver collector’s coin appears to do so thanks to a “numismatic breakthrough” that the Royal Canadian Mint heralds as a world-first. → Read more at resourceclips.com
September 2, 2019
OTTAWA , Sept. 3, 2019 /CNW/ – The Royal Canadian Mint is proud to launch a numismatic breakthrough from its ambitious and creative Research and Development team. Working with the University of Ottawa's Centre for Research in Photonics, the R+D team has created the 2020 $10 Fine Silver Coin – Pulsating Maple Leaf, engraved with an array of sub-millimeter-scale mirrors in the shape of a maple leaf on the reverse of this 99.99% pure silver coin. → Read more at finance.yahoo.com
September 3, 2019
As the 150th anniversary of the opening of the U.S. Branch Mint in Carson City draws closer, the Nevada State Museum is expanding the days it showcases one of the Mint’s most enduring artifacts. For much of the summer, the museum has been giving history lessons and minting medallions every Friday on Historic Coin Press 1 — the original coin press used when the Mint opened in February 1870. → Read more at carsonnow.org
September 4, 2019
TORONTO, Sept. 4, 2019 /CNW/ – For the first time in three decades, Canada's rarest coin – the 1911 silver dollar – will be on public display in its home country. This weekend, on Sept. 7-8, the 108-year-old silver dollar will be displayed at the National Postage Stamp and Coin Show, to be held at the Hilton Mississauga/Meadowvale. → Read more at newswire.ca
September 5, 2019
Rare currency expert Alfredo Cimino has never seen the 1911 silver dollar, but he’s heard of it. Everyone in the business has. Nicknamed the Emperor or Holy Grail of Canadian coins, it’s held many heavyweight titles in the world of numismatics, or professional coin collection and study, including the world’s most valuable coin, in 1965, and Canada’s rarest coin, which it retains to this day. → Read more at theglobeandmail.com
September 5, 2019
A rare example of Bermuda “Hogge Money” — a coin which was produced in the early 1600s — sold for $96,000 when it was auctioned last night, with the coin one of only eight examples known to exist. “The Sommer Islands coinage was produced in England circa 1616 for use in the British colony now known as Bermuda,” the auction house noted, with the “Hogge Money” coins issued in four denominations: shilling, sixpence, threepence, and twopence. → Read more at bernews.com
September 6, 2019
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — As special as it is for those involved, a class of new members gets enshrined annually in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. That makes it somewhat less exclusive than the minting of a coin – which is part of this year’s ceremony as well. → Read more at nba.com
Although it has been a while since I have posted something outside of the Weekly World Numismatic News, it does not mean that I have been idle. Here are some random thoughts:
First, I want to thank the American Numismatic Association Board of Governors for awarding me the 2019 Glenn Smedley Memorial Award. It is an honor! I wish I could have been there for the award ceremony.
2019 Glenn B Smedley Medal
ANA President Steve Ellsworth asked me to continue as Chair of the Technology Committee. I accepted his appointment. Steve has a different vision for how to move forward. Change is a good thing and will work with him and the Board to do what is best for the ANA.
There continues to be work to do for the ANA to add technology to the numismatic experience. One of the areas I would like to include more technology are the exhibits. After speaking with one person familiar with the exhibiting process, I think there are ways to add technology without technology overshadowing the numismatic content. I will have a proposal shortly. Stay tuned.
Not long ago, U.S. Mint Director David Ryder said that there might be a chance to add color to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coins. I have had a mixed feeling about adding color to coins. There are some cases where the color acted as an enhancer. Other times, some mints produced coins that were discs with prints. I will wait until the design is released to decide how I feel about the Mint’s attempt with color.
2007 Somalia Motorcycle Coins
I love these coins but is this the direction the U.S. Mint should go?
There are many collectibles whose values have declined over the last year, including some collector coins. One area that remains low are those collector sets produced by the television hucksters or the private mints. These firms overhype the value of their wares to convince buyers that they should purchase them as an investment. Recently, I handled an estate with several items purchased from QVC and the Franklin Mint. All of the coins were overpriced. The family was upset when I provided my valuation. I will talk about this more in a future post.
Another article idea that is inspired by my business is the difference between collecting and investing. Although some people like to try to mix the two, most of the time, the result is that the investor does not create a compelling collection while most of the collectors create value without trying.
Recently, I decided to liquidate part of my collection. As part of the process, I realized how much I have learned over the years. It is a real case of “the more you know, the more you realize what you don’t know.” I learned several lessons during this process, including not to trust my judgment. In one case, coins I graded years ago were over graded. If I would have used the tools and knowledge, I have today, and the grades would be different.
I sold my silver Pandas. I lost interest after the composition was changed but the hype has kept the prices up. Hype is not a long-term strategy.
Finally, I am still waiting to find a “W” quarter in change. I have yet to see one. Most of the people I know that are looking for these quarters are roll hunting. If I were into conspiracies, I would suggest that the Mint did this on purpose to increase the demand for quarters. People would demand rolls of quarters, forcing the Federal Reserve to order more.
Considering the U.S. Mint is a government agency, I bet they are storing most of the quarters in Area 51! After all, if we are going into conspiracy theories, we might as well go all of the way!
Like many here in Washington, Congress goes on vacation in August. They usually adjourn the last full week in July and return right after Labor Day. The August vacation has been an ongoing fact of Congress since the 1950s.
Like the rest of our lives, Congress has found ways of replacing paper-based processes with an online equivalent. One of those areas is when a member wants to submit a bill. Rather than typing it on paper and dropping it into a physical hopper, the member creates an electronic version of the bill and submits it to the clerk of their respective chambers.
In August, Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) did that by submitting the Women’s History and Nineteenth Amendment Centennial Quarter Dollar Coin Program Act (S.2427). If passed, the bill will success the America the Beautiful Quarter Dollar Program to honor historical women on U.S. quarters.
S. 2427: Women’s History and Nineteenth Amendment Centennial Quarter Dollar Coin Program Act
Read twice and referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. — Aug 1, 2019
In July, the Senate passed the Christa McAuliffe Commemorative Coin Act (S.239), and in June, they passed the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commemorative Coin Act (S.1235). Both bills remain held at the desk in the House of Representative because of an objection.
Previously, a source said that a freshman member of the House made the objection based on constitutional grounds. Another source claims the constitutional argument is being used to mask other political reasons. The source said that if the Senate wants to block bills passed by the House, then the House was going to do the same to the Senate.
In other words, tantrums on both sides of the Capital continues to cause gridlock on the most mundane legislation. Your government at work.
While perusing the news for numismatic-related stories, some of the searches tend to find letters to the editors from people who tell a part of their collecting stories. This week, I came across a letter from a collector in the outer suburbs of the Chicago area.
Token for a free bottle of Coca-Cola in 1915-16
Gregory Martin wrote to the editor for KendallCountyNOW.com that he would ” like to bring to mind the concept of starting your young ones on starting a coin collection.”
In three of the four paragraphs, Martin shows his passion for both collecting and how it relates to history. He mentions the 3-cent nickel and the 1943 steel cents as gateways into understanding what was happening in our country’s history.
Martin may have touched on something that today’s teachers can use to explain history. For example, the story of westward expansion was more about economics than exploration. People left the east for better opportunities, to find gold, discover silver, or for 40 acres and a mule. These stories can be taught using the money of the times.
As collectors, we know about fractional currency, postage stamp money, and why arrows periodically appear on minor coinage of the time. However, using these tangible items as props, a teacher can explain the history and show the results by using the money of the time.
Every coin, currency, and token is a reflection of the times when and where produced. A teacher can use the history of the San Francisco Mint to teach about the Gold Rush and the Great Earthquake of 1906.
The New Orleans Mint had its place in the Civil War.
The Carson City Mint is as much a story about the old west as it is about the economic battles, including the Crime of ’73.
Trade and sales tax tokens can show how stores, states, and municipalities tried to work through the Great Depression. Transportation tokens show how transportation had grown in the 20th century. And how some cities, like Baltimore, issue its own “currency” to help promote local business.
One Dollar Baltimore B-Note featuring Frederick Douglas and a Baltimore oriole.
Using numismatics to learn about history goes beyond the United States’ borders. After becoming interested in Canadian coins, I learned more about the British monarchy and the decline of the monarch’s power by studying the transitions from Queen Victoria to Queen Elizabeth II.
After finding three banknotes from the State of Chihuahua, I learned more about the Mexican Revolution after trying to understand why currency for a three-year state existed.
Maybe it is time to take the saying “history in your hand” and turn it into something tangible. After all, a handful of trade and sales tax tokens may have more of an impact than just reading about the Great Depression.
And now the news…
August 18, 2019
A Utah businessman paid $1.32 million for a dime last week at a Chicago coin auction. It wasn't just any 10-cent piece; the 1894-S Barber Dime is one of only 24 that were ever made, according to Stack's Bowers Galleries, which held the auction Thursday night. → Read more at cnn.com
August 24, 2019
TREASURE-hunters have dug up a hoard of ancient silver coins dating back to the Battle of Hastings in 1066 – worth an impressive £5million. A metal-detecting couple made the lucky find while searching an unploughed field on a farm in north-east Somerset. → Read more at thesun.co.uk
August 24, 2019
Such a hobby does not take a lot to start and can be rewarding in so many ways. To start with you learn about money and in it's many denominations, including the Civil War 3 cent nickel! In American collecting you can observe the way our country grew and developed, gaining a perspective on people and actions of this great nation. → Read more at kendallcountynow.com
August 24, 2019
For the first time in almost half a century the Treasury has ordered the Royal Mint to stop producing any 1p or 2p coins. The crackdown on coppers comes at a time when all our cash is under threat – with banks preferring that we pay for goods online or with cards because it saves them money. → Read more at thisismoney.co.uk
Since the numismatic news has been light this week, I would like to answer some of the criticism received for last week’s post about my not attending the World’s Fair of Money.
2019 Glenn B Smedley Medal
The allegedly offending paragraph began, “One of the reasons I could not be at the World’s Fair of Money was because I was attending two seminars from another show.” (emphasis added)
First, every critic missed the first four words: ONE OF THE REASONS. It was not the only reason. I disclose a lot about myself and my life outside of collecting on this blog. I do not reveal everything. Attending the seminars was only one of the reasons. The other is I have a business to run.
Regular readers know that I started a business last year that is not numismatic-related. While my company does handle some numismatic items, these are not my focus. To maintain a new business, I have to make decisions that I may not like today but will help me in the future. I decided it was not in my business’s best interest for me to leave to attend the World’s Fair of Money.
Critics suggested that I could have attended the virtual seminar from my hotel room in Rosemont. While it sounds logical, let’s look at reality. Hotel Wi-Fi is not conducive to attending an interactive workshop for three hours. Hotel Wi-Fi services are not designed for that type of service. It may support downloading your latest streaming movie, but it does so with the support that you do not see. Since this is not a technical blog, I will tell you as a retired computer person that what you see and what is reality are very different.
Then there’s the question of being cost-effective. I run a startup business. While I have early success, it takes a lot of resources to build a business. I asked about the cost-effectiveness of sitting in a hotel room for a six-hour seminar. The answered varied but did not answer the question about whether the cost adds up.
Nearly every one of the naysayers in email and those who commented was established, dealers. All are over the age of 50. None would answer the question as to whether they would have attended a show that was not related to their business in their first few years of business.
I suspect that many of them have suppressed their early struggles as they have become successful.
I applaud each of their successes. But each has forgotten that the success came at a cost. Even though I might be around their age, I am running a new business and am enduring the struggles they faced at a younger age. It is more difficult for me now than it was for them in the past.
Some who have engaged in a conversation, I asked whether they understood my point? They did not get it!
Where is the outreach beyond the four walls of the convention center? Why is the entire show confined to the convention center? Why is there no attempt to get other people interested who did not attend or could not attend?
The bottom line is why is the ANA not broadcasting the World’s Fair of Money online to a broader audience?
It is possible to contribute the ANA without attending a convention. How do I know this? I have the Glenn Smedley Award to prove it can be done! I did not set out to win awards. I set out to improve the ANA and make it accessible to more people. I set out to move the ANA into the 21st century with technology. I see technology as the force that will promote the ANA.
I also see the Luddite attitude of some as the force that will be the ANA’s demise.
There are many issues the ANA faces, and I am concerned about how the organization’s use of technology will affect its future. I have three concerns that the ANA should address:
- Broadcasting from the National Money Show and World’s Fair of Money. With all due respect to the older members, sometimes it is not possible to show up. With the technology available, the ANA must start broadcasting from the show floors, meeting rooms, and even the auctions. News, interviews, activities, and just plain showing off to an Internet audience will keep current members engaged and spark new interest.
- Online education must be expanded to include courses for the experienced collector and non-collector. The ANA must go beyond was previously discussed. It did not go far enough. The effort was like trying to smell a rose at arms-length because there is a thorn on the side. The ANA must commit to bringing robust education services online or stop trying to dabble.
- Aside from expanding technology in these areas, another enhancement would be to add technology to the exhibits. With all due respect to the exhibit committee and those who have created great exhibits, static displays are in yesterday’s museums. Museum and other exhibits are not becoming interactive. Even the Manley Library exhibits have rotating displays the allow visitors to view both sides of the object. Under current rules, it is challenging to add electronic aids to exhibits. Having access to electricity for each of the cases must be an option for exhibitors. Having access to the Internet must be an option for exhibitors. Add this capability and watch the exhibits really pop!
As of now, I believe I am still Chair of the money.org Committee, the former Technology Committee. If ANA President Steve Ellsworth chooses to allow me to continue in this position, I will work to help the ANA move forward with these goals.
And now the news…
August 19, 2019
A Utah businessman paid $1.32 million for a dime last week at a Chicago coin auction. It wasn’t just any 10-cent piece; the 1894-S Barber Dime is one of only 24 that were ever made, according to Stack’s Bowers Galleries, which held the auction Thursday night. Only nine of the coins are confirmed to still exist. → Read more at ktla.com
August 20, 2019
The oldest coins minted for colonial Australia have gone on show at the Royal Australian Mint, allowing visitors to lay eyes… → Read more at the-riotact.com
August 21, 2019
(MENAFN – Newsroom Panama) The 50 cent coins that were minted to commemorate the anniversary of the founding of Panama City, 500 → Read more at menafn.com
August 21, 2019
The prosecutor said that Louis "The Coin" Colavecchio "is effectively unable to enjoy life without conceiving new criminal ventures." → Read more at providencejournal.com
August 22, 2019
Gold prices have been hitting a fresh high everyday since Tuesday. → Read more at indiatoday.in
August 23, 2019
The penny will go on show for the first time at Saffron Walden Museum on Saturday August 24 → Read more at bishopsstortfordindependent.co.uk
This past week the World’s Fair of Money was held in Rosemont, just outside of Chicago. I wish I knew more of what happened, but the coverage of the show was its usual light to non-existent.
For years, I have been calling for the ANA to broadcast from the convention. For many years, I have been saying that when the collector cannot go to the show, the show must go to the collector. Nearly every other industry that holds a significant show finds ways of broadcasting part of the show to people who cannot attend.
One of the reasons I could not be at the World’s Fair of Money was because I was attending two seminars from another show. These were classes that are required so that I can become a licensed appraiser. Rather then travel to the show, I was able to view these seminars as they occurred. The conferencing software also allowed me to ask questions.
For next year’s show, I would like to see the ANA start to broadcast the Money Talks programs. All business-related items like the meeting of the Board of Governors session could appear on a live stream. Let’s start with that before I go into the rest of my wishlist.
And now the news…
August 10, 2019
The Royal Mint has revealed no new 1p or 2p coins were struck over the last year. Is the future of copper coins under threat again? → Read more at which.co.uk
August 12, 2019
The government’s latest wheeze to convince us that Brexit means Brexit was announced this weekend. Sajid Javid is drawing up plans for millions of 50p coins to be issued when the UK leaves the EU later this year. → Read more at independent.co.uk
August 14, 2019
August 15, 2019
Sen. Roy Blunt wants a commemorative coin to honor Negro League Baseball when it celebrates its 100 year anniversary in 2020. The Missouri Republican talked about his coin push during a tour of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, this week. → Read more at rollcall.com
August 15, 2019
A woman from Asten found a very peculiar coin when she emptied out her purse after her vacation on Wednesday. A 2-euro coin, with the image of Princess Beatrix on it, that had also been minted with an image of an eagle with a swastika under it, De Gelderlander reports. → Read more at nltimes.nl
This past week, two men entered the Mexico Mint (Casa de Moneda de México) and stole 1,567 gold coins worth an estimated $2.5 million. News reports say that these coins have a 50 peso value. Since the only gold coins available from the Mexico Mint of that type are Libertads, each coin is worth a little more than $1,600 each (about 31,500 pesos).
Initial reports say that security personnel did not follow appropriate protocols as the vault was left open before the robbery. Guards and other staff members were taken into custody for questioning.
The brazen daylight robbery occurred in an exclusive section of Mexico City that is well protected. Unfortunately, Mexico has seen an increase in violent crimes, including murder, with the increased activity of the drug cartels. The arrest and conviction of high-profile cartel leaders and the growth of exports to the United States created a situation where the cartels are fighting for territory.
An unconfirmed report said that the robbery was carried out by one of the cartels. If that is the case, the gold will likely be melted so that the coins would not be traceable.
And now the news…
August 4, 2019
A treasure trove of 17th century silver coins has been found under the floor of a monastic church. Archaeologists from the University of Gdańsk were working in the presbytery of the 14th century Church of the Saint Andrew the Apostle in the town of Barczewo in Poland’s northern province of Warmia, when they discovered a glazed ceramic mug handle filled with nearly 1,000 coins. → Read more at thefirstnews.com
August 6, 2019
Thieves stole nearly 1,600 gold coins worth more than $2 billion in a brazen daytime robbery in Mexico City. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Armed robbers broke into a Mexican government coin manufacturer on Tuesday and filled a backpack with more than $2 million worth of gold coins from a vault that had been left open, security officials said. → Read more at businessinsider.com
August 6, 2019
Police are searching for the perpetrators of the theft, which took place in broad daylight on one of the Mexican capital's most prestigious avenues, Avenida Reforma, CNN en Español reports. The brazen heist is the latest development in a crime wave that has struck Mexico City in recent months as the security situation deteriorates across the country. → Read more at www-m.cnn.com
August 7, 2019
The Royal Mint didn’t produce any 1p and 2p copper coins in 2018 — marking the first time since 1972 and 1984 that none were created, respectively. Currently, there are an estimated 10.5 billion coppers in use and another 6.3 billion laying dormant in piggy banks and jams cars across the country. → Read more at news.yahoo.com
August 7, 2019
A glass bottle containing six kilos of coins from interwar Poland has been found buried under a monastery in Ukraine. Builders stumbled upon the stash one-metre below the Bernadine Monastery and St. Andrew’s Church in the town of Zbarazh where they were carrying out earthworks. → Read more at thefirstnews.com
Congress is nothing if not full of shallow people who would pander to their own mothers if it meant winning a vote or two. Their shallowness is on display just before they go on an extended break when members drop bills into the virtual hopper for consideration.
In the old days, members of Congress would write have the bills printed on paper and dropped into a physical hopper. The Clerk of the House would empty the hopper and enter new bills into the Congressional Record and add it to the calendar. The bills are sent to the Government Printing Office (GPO) for publications. Nowadays, the hopper is virtual. The submittal process is all by the press of the button — however, the still prints the bills and the Congressional Record causing delays in reporting.
Members of Congress know this and can milk a story for days while they travel back to their districts for their summer break.
It is excellent public relations for these people whose approval rating is lower than drain cleaner. So in between the bills to rename Post Offices, federal buildings, and sections of highway are bills to create commemorative coins. Congress gets a nice writeup about these bills that they hope their constituents will remember knowing most people have short attention spans.
The numismatic media is no different than any other press sectors. Every numismatic-related bill that is introduced gets banner headline coverage even though very few will receive a hearing. The only difference in their reporting is that the numismatic media will bury the term “if it passes” somewhere in its reporting.
Then, when a bill passes one chamber and sent across to the other, someone is breaking out the champagne. Except someone forgot that we are talking about Congress where nothing is easy. Sure, the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commemorative Coin Act (S. 1235) and the Christa McAuliffe Commemorative Coin Act of 2019 (S. 239) passed the Senate, but the House has not accepted these bills. Members of the House will not let these bills in the front door because they are revenue-generating bills, which constitutionally must be introduced in the House.
It was particularly interesting when a Tennessee newspaper lauded Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) for S. 1235 without noting that the bill introduced by this one-time member of the House is blocked for violating the constitution.
I find this stuff fascinating. Then again, I used to work for the federal government!
And now the news…
July 28, 2019
We’ve had a whole host of new currency introduced recently, but what should you do if you still have old coins or notes knocking about? The answer depends on what kind of currency you have, and how long ago it went out of date – while you can still exchange the recently changed notes and coins, you may be out of luck if you find any half-pence or farthings. → Read more at simplybusiness.co.uk
July 30, 2019
A Vancouver Island man has spent the last 10 years uncovering thousands of items using his metal detector — many of which are historic and valuable, he says. → Read more at cbc.ca
July 30, 2019
Nearly two years after they stopped being legal tender, 145 million old-style £1 coins are still missing. → Read more at bbc.com
July 30, 2019
Collectors are only too happy to share the history of their collections with visitors → Read more at gulfnews.com
July 30, 2019
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — From Satchel Paige to Jackie Robinson and Buck O’ Neil, several of baseball’s iconic players began their professional careers with the Negro Leagues in Kansas City. Now those legends, along with countless others, could be honored with a special, commemorative coin. → Read more at fox4kc.com
August 1, 2019
Twin Cities coin dealer Barry R. Skog has been sentenced to 30 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Wilhelmina Wright for perpetrating a counterfeit coin fraud scheme. → Read more at startribune.com
August 2, 2019
The PIL filed by the National Association for the Blind (NAB) sought directions to the RBI to include distinctive features in coins and in currency notes, so visually-challenged persons can easily identify the same. → Read more at hindustantimes.com
Of course, the July legislative review has to discuss the introduction of the 1921 Silver Dollar Commemorative Coin Act (H.R. 3735). Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) introduced this bill with Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY) as a co-sponsor. As soon as the Congressional Record published the bill’s submittal, the American Numismatic Association issued a press release asking members to ask their member of Congress to support the bill.
1921-D Peace Dollar
The bill calls for the issue of no more than 500,000 $1 silver coins commemorating the Morgan dollar and the Peace dollar in 2021. If passed, 2021 will mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the Morgan Dollar and the beginning of the Peace Dollar.
Aside from being excited about the issue of the coin, the one line that has caught the interest of collectors is that “it is the sense of Congress that if the Secretary determines it to be feasible and cost effective, the Secretary may mint some of the coins minted under this Act at the Nevada State Museum (formerly a United States Mint facility) located in Carson City, Nevada.”
Although it seems like a good idea, there are a lot of questions whether striking coins in Carson City would be feasible. Since the facility is an active museum, would Nevada be willing to give up a piece of their operations to the federal government? How disruptive would be to the museum’s activities before and after striking the coins?
How would the U.S. Mint strike coins at the museum? While the facility has old coining presses used for demonstrations, they may not be capable of manufacturing modern coinage. Then there is the other equipment involved including an upsetting mill to put an edge on the coin.
The Carson City Mint was built in 1863 to building codes and security standards of the mid-19th century. After the Mint stopped striking circulating coins in 1893, the building became as Assay Office. In 1933, the Great Depression ended its service as an Assay Office. The federal government sold the building to Nevada in 1939. While the Nevada State Museum has updated the building’s security, it is doubtful that it would meet modern U.S. Mint requirements.
Striking coins with the CC mintmark may have an appeal to the collecting community, it might not be feasible and cost-effective.
S. 239: Christa McAuliffe Commemorative Coin Act of 2019
Summary: (Sec. 3) This bill directs the Department of the Treasury to mint and issue not more than 350,000 $1 silver coins in commemoration of Christa McAuliffe, a teacher tragically killed in the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster.(Sec. 4) The design of the coins shall bear an image and the name of Christa McAuliffe on the obverse side and a design on the reverse side that depicts the legacy of McAuliffe as a teacher.(Sec. 5) Treasury may issue the coins from January 1-December 31, 2021.(Sec. 7) All surcharges received by Treasury from the sale of the coins shall be paid to the FIRST robotics program for the purpose of engaging and inspiring young people, through mentor-based programs, to become leaders in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Held at the desk. — Jul 10, 2019
Received in the House. — Jul 10, 2019
Message on Senate action sent to the House. — Jul 10, 2019
Passed Senate with amendments by Voice Vote. — Jul 9, 2019
Measure laid before Senate by unanimous consent. — Jul 9, 2019
Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs discharged by Unanimous Consent. — Jul 9, 2019
Read twice and referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. — Jan 28, 2019
The Senate passed the Christa McAuliffe Commemorative Coin Act of 2019 in July. Like the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commemorative Coin Act (S. 1235) passed in June, the bill is being held at the desk in the House of Representative because of an objection by one of its members.
A source claims that a freshman member of the House has objected to these bills being first passed by the Senate. This member cites Article I Section 7 of the United States Constitution where it says that “All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.” A spokesperson in the House ’Clerk’s office would not confirm or deny the ’source’s claim.
H.R. 3757: 1921 Silver Dollar Commemorative Coin Act
Referred to the House Committee on Financial Services. — Jul 15, 2019
One of the indicators as to how the markets view the economy is the price of precious metals. When there is uncertainty in the markets, investors leave the equity markets and buy precious metals. When that happens, it will have an impact on most pre-1965 coins.
Marketwatch reported that silver hit a 13-month high about the same time Iran captured a Britsh tanker. Since then, the silver market leveled out with few signs of dropping. Silver is not selling for at the same level as seen during the economic crisis in as it approached 2011, there continues to be upward pressure on its price.
30-day Silver Chart (will not update—Courtesy of Kitco)
10-year Silver Chart (will not update—Courtesy of Kitco)
Silver investing is sometimes called the “poor man’s gold.” When the average investor is uncertain and looks for a safer investment, they will buy silver while the wealthier investors will buy gold. Palladium has emerged as the new investment vehicle for investors with means.
Gold has been more erratic with wild swings in both directions depending on the news of the day. A precious metals fund manager who manages several diverse portfolios called the divergence of the markets curious. There is not a clear explanation for the current rise of silver. If someone were trying to manipulate the market, the prices would climb faster. All she could tell was there were a lot of low-end investors buying into silver.
30-day Gold Chart (will not update—Courtesy of Kitco)
For numismatics, the rising price of silver can be problematics. As the price of silver rises, the value of your coins will increase. However, adding to your collection will cost more, especially on those collectible coins whose value is tied to the price of silver.
Those responsible for investing in these markets are beginning to worry. If investors are buying silver as a safe haven, there could be a feeling of a pending economic crisis. Only time will tell if they are right.
And now the news…
July 24, 2019
Present-day tenants of home owned by Jewish family before the Holocaust find jars containing 2,800 coins from as far back as the Roman Empire and as far away as India → Read more at timesofisrael.com
July 24, 2019
A hoard of Roman coins dating from the time of Queen Boudicca have been found by a metal detectorist in a field. What makes this find especially fascinating is that they may have been hidden there during one of the most interesting periods in Britain’s early history, the revolt against Rome led by the Celtic Queen Boudicca. → Read more at thevintagenews.com
July 24, 2019
Silver futures settle at a 13-month high on Monday, outpacing strength in gold, which saw prices eke out only a modest gain despite rising tensions between… → Read more at marketwatch.com