News-Antique.com published a nice article on casino chip collecting in conjunction with the 18th annual convention of the Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club. The article describes the history of the organization. I knew the founder of the club, Archie Black from my days at Bell Laboratories in New Jersey, where we both worked in the same building. We ran into each other at a coin show and realized we'd been passing each other in the hallway for months not knowing we were both collectors. Archie is interviewed in the article. Congratulations on the success of the club.
Chip and token collectors have been around as long as casinos have, but it wasn’t until the 1980’s that collectors began talking with each other on a regular basis and dealers began to concentrate on casino material. Before the 1980’s, chips and tokens could be found outside of casinos only as oddities: a few chips or tokens mixed in with a coin dealer’s stock, or a few chips at an antiques shop or garage sale.
Two early chip dealers published short-lived newsletters, and a contributor to one of them was Archie Black, who lived not far from the relatively new casino gaming jurisdiction of Atlantic City, NJ. When the second of the two dealer newsletters ceased publication, Black, a chip collector with a long history of coin collecting and organizing coin clubs, decided to test the waters to see whether or not there might be sufficient interest to organize a chip and token collectors club similar to the coin clubs he had participated in. Late in 1987, Archie wrote to a number of collectors who appeared on the newsletter’s subscriber list, inquiring about interest in an organized club.
The first issue of what would eventually become "Casino Chip & Token News", the quarterly magazine of the Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club at over 100 pages per issue appeared in January 1988, and was entitled “Atlantic City Chip & Token Newsletter.” The five page newsletter was the creation of Archie Black, who began publishing his newsletter quarterly including news and history of the relatively new (10 years old) Atlantic City casino industry.
The response to the survey Black included in his first issue was overwhelmingly in favor of establishing a formal club, and the Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club was a reality. The initial group of collectors numbered about 20, but the charter membership was extended to the first 100 members. That goal was passed immediately after the Club’s first annual meeting at the American Numismatic Association convention in Cincinnati, Ohio, that July.
To read the complete article, see:
THE LIVELY WORD OF COLLECTING CASINO MEMORABILIA
For more information on the club, see:
Wayne Homren, Editor
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