The Very First U.S. Coin?


In 2013, David McCarthy spotted a rare coin in an auction catalog and immediately had a hunch it was the first coin minted by the United States in 1783. Not the first run of coins, but the very first one.


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McCarthy, an experienced coin collector, bought the silver coin for $1.18 million.

He spent the next four years digging up evidence to prove that he had indeed purchased the fabled first “500” quint.

What first caught McCarthy’s eye was the fact that the coin, which was unmistakably one of two rare quints, had no inscription on the front. A similar coin, with a Latin inscription that translates “New Constellation,” was found in 1860. The one McCarthy bought was found about 15 years later and was therefore designated “quint Type 2.”

If McCarthy’s evidence is solid, the coin he has was mentioned in the diary of Robert Morris, a Philadelphia merchant who financed the American Revolution and signed the Declaration of Independence. From 1781 to 1784, when the young nation was still governed by the Articles of Confederation, Morris served as the superintendent of finance for the United States.

In an April 2, 1783, entry in his diary, Morris writes of “a Piece of Silver Coin being the first that has been struck as an American Coin.”

Morris’ coin was meant to demonstrate a prototype numerical currency system that would be based on the Spanish Eight Reale system. It was never adopted.

Saturday, November 11th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on The Very First U.S. Coin?

Next Club Meeting Thursday November 2


coin collecting Dayton, OH

Our next meeting is fast approaching. At this meeting we will welcome our new club leadership team as well as conduct another coin & currency auction.

Remember, there are no sellers’ or buyers’ fees collected by the club. For buyers, what you bid is what you pay! For sellers, whatever is bid is what you receive! It’s a great deal for all concerned.

Also, there will be the club’s usual Silver American Eagle raffle. So come on out, learn something new about coins, and enjoy another great club auction and raffle.

Thursday, October 26th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Next Club Meeting Thursday November 2

The Origins of the Credit Card

In an era when currency was often unavailable (and few people were literate), the tally stick, a forerunner of today’s high-tech credit cards, became increasingly popular in Europe.

Tally Sticks

In this early version of financial record keeping, notches were made on a wooden stick to indicate the amount lent—and owed. The sticks were then split down the middle; the creditor kept one half and the debtor the other. When a payment was made, the sticks were paired up, and the payment was marked on the stick. The tally stick system also had another built-in benefit: It was nearly impossible to counterfeit, as the shape, size and grain of the wooden halves had to match up perfectly.

Tally sticks were used in much of Europe, but probably nowhere as extensively as in England. For more than 700 years, tally sticks were used to collect taxes from local citizens, until the system was finally abandoned in 1826. Eight years later, when the British parliament finally decided to get rid of the thousands of leftover tally sticks being kept in storage, they decided to burn them in an underground furnace that heated the House of Lords, resulting in a massive fire that destroyed most of the complex—the worst fire to hit London since the Great Fire of 1666.

Friday, October 20th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on The Origins of the Credit Card

2017 $25 Palladium Eagles

On September 25th the United States Mint launched the sale of the first issue in a new annual series of American Eagle bullion coins, the $25 American Palladium Eagles.

coin collecting Dayton, OH

Coin obverses offer a high-relief rendition of sculptor Adolph A. Weinman’s Winged Liberty Head design for the dime struck in 1916. It shows a left-profile portrait of Lady Liberty wearing a winged Phrygian cap. Surrounding the portrait are inscriptions of LIBERTY, IN GOD WE TRUST, 2017 and Weinman’s overlapping ‘AW’ initials.

The reverse bears a high-relief version of Weinman’s 1907 American Institute of Architects (AIA) medal design with inscriptions of UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 1 OZ. Pd .9995 FINE, E PLURIBUS UNUM and $25 for the coin’s legal tender face value. The bullion piece is produced at the Philadelphia Mint but, as with other U.S. Mint bullion coins, it has no mint mark.

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on 2017 $25 Palladium Eagles

September Meeting Fast Approaching

The next club meeting will be September 7 at 7:00PM. Please plan on attending and as always all visitors are welcome to join us.

coin collecting Dayton, OH

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on September Meeting Fast Approaching

The “Orphan Annie” Dime

Why are 1844 Liberty Seated Dimes so rare, especially in higher grades? They are called “Orphan Annies” because they are said to have “lost their mates”. There are several theories about them and their rarity:

coin collecting Dayton, Oh

  1. They were destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire.
  1. Seventy thousand of them were shipped west to the ‘49ers and were seized by bandits who hid the loot and then were killed before revealing their hiding place.
  1. Fifty thousand were lost at sea.
  1. They were used as love tokens by soldiers in the Mexican War.

(I like explanation #4 best. Here’s the story.)

During a Mexican War campaign, the Army paymaster requisitioned a large supply of dimes for soldiers to use as small change, which happened to be all 1844 dimes.

Upon arriving in Mexico City, some of the lovesick soldiers fashioned the dimes into bracelets to attract female companionship. Not a single 1844 dime escaped the love-starved rush.

When the soldiers went home, the senoritas kept the dime bracelets, which were eventually melted down to become Mexican coins.

Today, a Fine-12 graded 1844 dime is worth around $475. One graded Good-4 is valued at $275. Or maybe you could save a few dollars by buying a few late date 1840’s or 1850’s Mexican coins and have an 1844 Liberty Seated dime minted inside them.

Monday, August 14th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on The “Orphan Annie” Dime

Meeting Tonight 7:00PM

Our club meeting is tonight and there will be a club auction


Thursday, August 3rd, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Meeting Tonight 7:00PM

Carson City Mint

The Carson City Mint was established by Congress on March 3, 1863, to serve the coinage needs brought about by the Comstock Lode, the largest silver strike in the Nation’s history. The mint was based in Nevada and was build during the height of the silver boom. Groundbreaking ceremonies took place on July 18, 1866. The cornerstone for the new facility was laid on September 18, 1866, but the building was not completed until December 13, 1869. There were 57 issues of gold coins (3 denominations) and 50 issues of silver coins (8 denominations) from the Comstock Lode were minted between the years of 1870 and 1893. No coins were minted from the middle of 1885 to 1889, during President Grover Cleveland’s presidency.

Alfred B. Mullett was the architect who designed this mint after becoming the Supervising Architect for the Department of the Treasury. He also happens to be the same designer of the San Francisco Mint as well. The supervisor who overlooked the construction of Carson City Mint was Abraham Curry, who was well known as “The Father of Carson City”. The style of the building was of the Renaissance Revival and is made out of stone.

coin collecting Dayton, Ohio

Between 1895 and 1933, Carson City mint became an official US Assay Office to help miners convert their ore into coins, ingots and bars. Eventually in 1939, the building was sold to the state of Nevada for $10,000 and has now become the Nevada State Museum.

Interesting Facts and Coin Statistics of the Carson City Mint

Total Number of Dimes: 20,912,588 ($2,091,259 face value)

Total Number of Twenty Cent Pieces: 143,290 ($28,658 face value)

Total Number of Quarters: 10,330,542 ($2,582,636 face value)

Total Number of Half Dollars: 105,307,627($2,653,814 face value worth)

Total Number of Dollars: 17,996,729 ($17,996,729 face value)

Total Number of $5 Gold Half Eagles: 709,617 ($3,548,085 face value)

Total Number of $10 Gold Eagles: 299,778 ($2,997,780 face value)

Total Number of $20 Gold Double Eagles: 864,128 ($17,282,560 face value)

Sunday, July 23rd, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Carson City Mint

The World’s First Counterfeit Cop?

Sir Isaac Newton was a renowned scientist whom many consider a genius. But he didn’t spend all of his spare time sitting under an apple tree thinking about gravity. For most of his life he was more obsessed with alchemy and divining hidden codes in the Bible than what we now call physics. He also spent a significant number of years hunting down and executing counterfeiters.

Sir Isaac Newton

           Sir Isaac Newton


In 1696 the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Charles Montagu, made Newton a warden of the Royal Mint, based in the Tower of London. The warden’s job was to enforce laws against counterfeiting.

Counterfeiting near the end of the 17th century provided plenty of problems to keep him occupied. By 1696, 10 percent of England’s coins were known to be fake. They were cast or stamped from forged or stolen molds; and coin clipping, in which the edges of coins were shaved off and used to make new coins, was rampant. The face value of an English coin didn’t match its bullion value, and coins were being shipped, en masse, to other European cities like Paris and Madrid and sold on the metals markets there. Newton had the solution.

He called for the Great Re-Coinage, the taking in millions of pounds of coins by weight and re-minting them at their correct values. He organized a production line of 500 men at the Tower of London, smelting much of England’s money supply over a four-year period. Parliament also passed the Coin Act in 1696, making it illegal to sell or own the equipment needed to make coins. The punishment for counterfeiting was death.

In 1699, Newton captured his era’s most notorious counterfeiter, William Chaloner, who claimed to have forged more than 30,000 gold Guineas in his career. After Chaloner was tried, convicted and hanged, Newton was made Master of the Royal Mint, a position he would hold until his death in 1727.

Thursday, July 13th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on The World’s First Counterfeit Cop?

July 6 Meeting

coin collecting Dayton, OhioOur next club meeting will be Thursday, July 6th, at 7:00pm.

Anyone with interests in coin collecting is invited to attend.

We meet at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church at 456 Woodman Drive in Dayton.

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on July 6 Meeting

Coins and the Fourth of July

coin collecting Dayton, OH

241 years ago, the Declaration of Independence was signed. That is why we celebrate July 4th; it marks the birth of our nation. This is also a great time for coin collectors to take note of coins honoring those who helped gain our freedom. These are some of the coins that are a tribute to the heroes of America’s independence.

1925 Lexington-Concord half dollar – honoring the first battles of the American Revolution.

1926 American Sesquicentennial half dollar – celebrating the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

1976 Bicentennial quarters, half dollars, and dollars – representing 200 years of freedom.

1998 Black Revolutionary War Patriots silver dollar – honoring all black patriots of the Revolutionary War.

2005 Marine Corps silver dollar – representing the 230th anniversary of the establishment of the Marines in 1775.

While you’re taking in your own local parade, barbecue or fireworks on this Fourth of July, take time to consider the essence of this national holiday – a celebration of the birth of our independence and its preservation by some ten generations of American service men and women ever since.

Happy Fourth of July!

Saturday, July 1st, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Coins and the Fourth of July

Gold & Silver Prices Lower

coin collecting Dayton, OH

Gold and silver futures posted heavy losses Thursday, padding declines that began Wednesday afternoon when the Fed raised interest rates. Gold marked a three-week low while silver logged a five-week low.

Gold for August delivery lost $21.30, or 1.7%, to settle at $1,254.60 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement is the weakest since May 24.

Gold futures ranged from a low of $1,252.70 to a high of $1,268.50. They are 1.3% lower so far this week.

Meanwhile, silver for July delivery tumbled 42 cents, or 2.5%, to settle at $16.716 an ounce. The close is the lowest since May 12. Silver futures traded between $16.62 and $17.07. They are 2.9% lower on the week to date.

This may represent an interesting buying opportunity for collectors to add gold or silver to their collections

Friday, June 16th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Gold & Silver Prices Lower

2017 $50 Gold Eagle

New on United States Mint sales boards this week is the 2017-W $50 Uncirculated American Gold Eagle.


The annually issued 22-karat gold coin launched last Thursday for $1,575.00 and went on to log four-day sales of 1,881, ranking right in the middle of the pack with other recent issues.

Friday, June 9th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on 2017 $50 Gold Eagle

Meeting This Thursday June 1

Our monthly meeting is tomorrow, June 1 at 7:00pm at St. Marks Church.

Wednesday, May 31st, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Meeting This Thursday June 1

Senate Proposes to Delete Cent Coin & $1 Note

Senate Bill # S.759, the Currency Optimization, Innovation & National Savings (COINS) Act of 2017 proposes to suspend the coining of one cent pieces, changing the composition of the nickel, and replacing $1 notes with $1 coins.

Coin Collecting Dayton, OH

The 1-cent coin would be suspended for ten years, eliminating spending 1.5 cents to produce the 1-cent coin.

It is reported that it costs 7.44 cents to make the present day nickel. The change would be that instead of containing 25% nickel and 75% copper, the new nickel would be 20% nickel and 80% copper.

Replacing $1 notes with $1 coins was been attempted before. However the government never quit printing $1 notes in the past. If passed, the bill would take affect within 2 years. $1 notes may still be printed for numismatic purposes, whatever that means, but the Federal Reserve would begin removing the notes from circulation. They would, however remain legal tender currency.

Thursday, May 18th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Senate Proposes to Delete Cent Coin & $1 Note

The Different Uses of The Word “Coin” & Other Money Terms

When you hear the word “coin” what does it mean? In the English language we use the word “coin” many different ways.

coin collecting Dayton, OH

Have you ever heard…?
To coin a phrase
2 sides of the same coin
Flip a coin
A coin of the realm
Toss a coin in the fountain (if in Rome, use your right hand & throw the coin over your left shoulder)
Make some fine coin (as in make a lot of money)
Phony as a $3 bill
Drop a dime on someone (turn them in for something they did)
Insert a coin (into a vending machine)
Chocolate coins (foil-wrapped candy)

Money Slang
$1 bills – also known as ones, singles, bucks
$5 bills – a fiver or a fin
$10 bill – a ten-spot or a sawbuck
$100 bill – a C-note

How about these different names for money?

Thursday, May 11th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on The Different Uses of The Word “Coin” & Other Money Terms

Spending Money

Coin Collecting Dayton, OH


Our next meeting on May 4th will include a member’s auction.

Bring what you want to sell.

Buy want you want to collect.

There are no selling or buying fees!

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on Spending Money

1967 Kennedy Half: Last of a 3-Year Series

From 1965 to 1967, the US Mint produced Special Mint Sets (SMS) instead of striking proof sets. SMS were struck without mintmarks so there are no D or S issues.

The 1967 Kennedy Half, the last of the non-mintmarked coins from those series, had the highest mintage of the three years. The three mints produced more than 295 million 1967 Kennedy Halves. They were also the most heavily saved, a result of the Mint’s elimination of silver in coins minted beginning in 1971.

The problem was most of the ’67 Kennedys that were saved, were pulled from circulation. They were not mint state. When the price of silver reached $49.45 per ounce in 1980, many of the 40% silver Kennedys were melted.

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Today, 1967 Kennedy Halves in MS-65 are no longer a common coin. Twenty years ago 1967 Kennedys in MS-65 were valued at $2.25. Today they list for $30. With a low supply, the rise in value may be headed further upward. It may be worth a collector keeping an eye out for MS-65 1967 Kennedy Halves.

As an added note, a 1967 NGC MS-69 Ultra Cameo Kennedy Half sold at a 2016 ANA auction for $19,975, without adding in the buyer’s premium.

Thursday, April 13th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on 1967 Kennedy Half: Last of a 3-Year Series

It Is Said

Coin Collecting


Money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver. – Ayn Rand

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on It Is Said

April 2017 Meeting

Our April meeting will be Thursday, April 6th @7:00PM.

Make plans to be there.

A presentation on polymer money is planned.coin collecting Dayton, OH

Wednesday, March 29th, 2017 Uncategorized Comments Off on April 2017 Meeting