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What are your collecting inrterests?


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As a newbie, I thought I would ask, so I can get the lay of the land here.

 

Me? I collect US Mint Medals, Indian Peace Medals, and Betts Medals, with an emphasis on Revolutionary War medals, mainly those related to the Comitia Americana series.

 

There was a great book recently released on Comitia Americana medals by John W. Adams and Anne Bentley simply titled "Comitia Americana" on the spine. The book motivated me to focus on this area.

 

I am trying hard to put together a set of original Comitia Americana medals. Like many of us, I regret selling my bronze AU Libertas Americana medal 7 or 8 years ago for under $1000.

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My collecting interests, in no particular order:

 

Colonial USA paper money

Scottish banknotes

Scottish coins

17th Century English Tokens

Spanish banknotes

Italian coins

Ukrainian coins and banknotes

Coins of ancient Syracuse

Coins from Thrace

Swedish Plate Money

World banknotes with attractive females

Russian banknotes and coins

Pre-decimal UK £SD

Medals from the St. Louis Exposition of 1904

Primitive money

 

And just about anything remotely numismatic.

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i collect everything from anywhere, coins, notes, tokens, medals, phone booth tokens, transpertatoion tokens, taxtokens, Notegeld, Swiis shooting Thalers, what ever.

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Scottishmoney-

 

Yes, I am fortunate enough to be the owner of the avatar. If you read Adams-Bentley Comitia Americana, you may have noticed the footnote on the original Howard silver awarded medal which was donated by the family to the MdHS in 1959 being a possible cast. I've seen it, and it is a cast - no question about it. I like to believe that the one I have is the awarded one, and there is some research supporting that theory, but not enough. I'm working on it!

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WWI German Expressionistic art medals by Gies, Lindl, von Esseo, Eberbach, Zutt, etc. Here is an example: Das Neue Chaos

 

You never cease to amaze me. What a wonderful piece (Das Neue Chaos). Any chance you are going to FIDEM in September?

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Celtic Gaul

Roman Republican prototypes for the Celtic PIXTILOS series

Celtic/Augustan Spain

Roman coins struck in Gaul

Merovingian

Carolingian

Tete Chinonais Feudal series

Medals and jetons of Louis XIV

Jetons of Paris

Aluminum tokens and medals

1894 California Midwinter Exposition tokens and medals

Comitia Americana (no originals, interested but not in active pursuit)

Things that catch my eye or interest

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In exonumia, I collect ANA medals and badges. I have a few other medals around but don't really pursue them. Coins -- mostly US with an emphasis on Indian Head Cents and Moderns. I have a nice NGC Signature set of one coin from each of my wedding anniversary years. It's complete up to this past 29th Aug - my 42nd anniversary. I also have an NGC Registry set for US Type Coins. It doesn't have very many entries and is far from competitive. It's just for fun.

 

I have some banknotes and in fact I have a collection of one coin/one banknote from each country in the world. Very far from complete. Since I really like copper coins, I've tried to make the coin copper whereever possible.

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I collect any hammered coins that take my fancy and am working on a mint run of Henry III Long-cross, over half-way there!! I also collect VF+ Old Head Crowns, cartwheel coppers and anything else that I like. Bit varied but I enjoy it! :ninja:

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My interests are primarily:

  • US coins (esp. pre-WWII)
  • World coins, generally (some emphasis on French pieces)
  • Ancient & medieval coins (as if I could afford medieval!)

Comitia, when you post something here, there's an Attachment Editor below the text-entry box. You browse to the file you want to upload, then click the UPLOAD button. Be aware the file-size limit is only 100kb, which is pretty small--you may have to shrink down your images considerably if you have high-res pics. I recommend a freeware tool like IrfanView.

 

YeOldeCollector, what about modern hammered coins? I belong to a medieval re-creation society, and some of our members mint their own coins.

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Comitia: If I read Adams and Bently correctly and understand what I am seeing in your photos and there's, it would seem yours has a state 1 obverse and a state 2 reverse. That would make it post 1830 (although that would suggest it should have an edge mark)? The rust along the rim that is clearly visible on the obverse die and state 1 medals and post 1830 is there. The pronounced rust on state 2 reverses and die crack look like they are there on your medal. Have you worked out the morphology of your medal in comparison to the other known medals?

 

(Nice piece by the way.)

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Comitia: If I read Adams and Bently correctly and understand what I am seeing in your photos and there's, it would seem yours has a state 1 obverse and a state 2 reverse. That would make it post 1830 (although that would suggest it should have an edge mark)? The rust along the rim that is clearly visible on the obverse die and state 1 medals and post 1830 is there. The pronounced rust on state 2 reverses and die crack look like they are there on your medal. Have you worked out the morphology of your medal in comparison to the other known medals?

 

(Nice piece by the way.)

 

I believe that state 1 and state 2 pertain to bronze medals only. There are no state 1 or state 2 silver medals that I know of, and I have pictures of 4 of the 6 known silver medals. On the stage 2 bronze medals, the collar hid the die break at 12:00 somehow, and created a smaller diameter. Adams /Bentley was not that clear about this. I personally think the die progression has some other nuances as well, unnoted in the book. I have a few bronze originals, and other bronze later strikes all struck with original dies, and all stage 1, and even a medal struck after 1880 - cornucopia-bronze - also stage 1 and struck with original dies. I have never seen a stage 2 medal in person.

 

Ford Part 14, Lot 220 was a state 2, Lot 221 was a state 1. Look closely, and you'll see the collar hides the die break, and the diameter is smaller.

 

 

All silver medals are of this combination seen here, though the Ford example appears not to have the reverse rust spots. They are definitely there though; it is just that the reverse is weakly struck. Look closely and you'll see them. The Dreyfus example has them as well. The Washington Webster is an exception, and was struck with near perfect dies, and was obviously the first medal struck with the dies. There are a few of the rust spots on the reverse, but the noteworthy obverse 12:00 die break is minimal. You can't really tell this from the picture of it in Adams/Bentley, at least not my copy.

 

Jefferson had two silver Howard medals struck, several months apart. The first for the awardee Col. Howard, and the second as part of the Washington/Webster set. During this time, the dies were poorly stored, and rusted. I believe the second silver medal struck has the die rust and damage, which occurs quickly if the dies are not maintained.

 

My theory, pure conjecture, is that the medal in the Upton holder for the Washington/Webster set was the first struck medal. It is just too pristine. Jefferson had the 2 medals, and could choose. By the way, the Upton holder was manufactured in France, and Jefferson completed the Washington Webster set in France. This isn't stated explicitly in Adams/Bentley.

 

Whether Washington picked the first struck pristine Howard medal or Jefferson did for that Upton presentation set? They both had the 2 silver Howard medals, and could have picked which one went where. Under the same conjecture I believe it was Jefferson, since Jefferson seemed more concerned with the complete presentation sets than with getting the awarded medals to their rightful recipients. From what I could tell, he had less concern about John Howard or William Washington, at least compared to putting together that silver presentation set, since it was his baby - his idea - to make the Upton Silver presentation sets, and to produce and use them as diplomatic gifts. Washington did not seem to care about any of the medals either way, so I do not believe it was him.

 

The medal you see here now resides in an NGC large size holder as an original silver John Howard medal, graded MS 61, a grade that to a medal collector is meaningless, other than the fact that it is Uncirculated vs. AU for the Ford and Dreyfuss example. Both Ford and Dreyfuss examples have notable digs in the fields; this example is definitely more pristine. Also, the Ford example was bezeled or mounted at some point. By the way, of course the edge on this medal is plain, and has a witness line. This medal also has a better strike than either Ford or Dreyfus, particularly on the reverse. The reverse strike here even exceeds the sharpness of the Washington-Webster example.

 

I was smart enough to take over 100 pictures of my medal, including the edge, before sending it to NGC. The pics I posted here are pre-encapsulation.

 

By the way, without giving away all of the secrets I discovered about this medal, since I have done a ton of research, and am working on a piece for publication, lets just say that the original Howard medal is traceable, and I have been able to trace it throughout some of it's history. The medal at the MdHS is definitely NOT the original, (or even a stuck medal at all) and the person who donated it, or more accurately bequeathed it, had only a copy; I assume they obtained the copy as a proud member of the Howard family and the history of it's Patriarch, John Eager Howard. I can only guess that the curator at the MdHS who was bequeathed the medal in 1959 did not know any better, and simply assumed since it came from a Howard family member, and looked silver, it was the original.

 

One of the cool aspects to my research is that by accident, I may ultimately locate the original gold Daniel Morgan medal as well. I am so close and yet so far.

 

And I have not proved this is the awarded medal; not yet. I am missing at least one important piece of research, which requires me to fly to Baltimore personally to complete. Fortunately, the remaining research can only prove, and not disprove, that this is the original. Unfortunately, if the research does not prove this to be the awarded Howard medal, it may be impossible to ever determine which medal was actually awarded to Howard.

 

Sorry for all of the mystery, it is too early for now to make any definitive statements.

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Thank you for the thorough post. I can't wait to read the results of your research. I am amazed at how quickly these early dies acquired rust, often before the first medals were struck. I hope you manage to find the proof you seek as that would make for the most interesting story.

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