The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 17, Number 23, June 1, 2014, Article 32


Joe Levine forwarded this press release for his upcoming exonumia sale. -Editor

Presidential Sale #84 Our 84th Sale is our first sale in many years without a live component. We have attempted to set new bidding rules which are fair to all. For the first time in a long time, bidders, who in the past were unable to effect a live presence, will not be at a competitive disadvantage. We are, however, willing to learn and if you have ideas as to how we can make improvements, we are all ears!

Auction 84 starts out with a fine offering of Hard Times Tokens. It is highlighted by the extremely rare storecard of Walton, Walker & Co. of New Orleans (Low 106; HT 129) Ours is only the seventh known specimen of this token, an example of which was last sold in the Dice/Hicks Sale of 2008 for $63,250.00! Speaking of the Dice/Hicks Collection, we have from their sale the only known example of Low 246A, the 6 ¼¢ denomination of the Norristown, Pa. merchant, S. Feather. From the same collection, we have one of the rarest HTT merchant tokens, that of Edwin Parmelee’s Bowling Saloon. In addition to these great rarities, there are many scarce and rare tokens for the collector with more modest means.

Our offering of 19th century merchant tokens includes a significant collection of soda water tokens put together over many years by our friend, Michael Greenspan. Since one of the early uses of “soda water” was for medicinal and health purposes, this collections could also double as a collection of druggist tokens. Michael shares with us the genesis of his interest in the specialty.

“I can still remember, as a child in the 1940’s, that my grandfather owned and operated an old-fashioned candy store in Manhattan. It was a popular gathering place that sold newspapers, cigarettes, fountain drinks and ice cream, among other sundries. There was always a steady stream of customers because the store also contained a pay phone booth at a time when residential phone service was still scarce and expensive. Frequently, there was a long queue of customers waiting to use the phone and many of them ordered an ice cream cone or fountain concoction while they waited.

As a youngster, I was posted at the large window-counter opening to the street to sell loose cigarettes at two for a penny and fountain drinks, either plain carbonated water, (“seltzer”) for two cents each, or flavored drinks for five. If a customer gave me a dime or quarter, I was instructed to return his change in the form of aluminum tokens, which could be used for a subsequent purchase. Over the years, I discovered that this was not an unusual practice and that many merchants issued tokens for this purpose.”

Our offering Civil War Tokens is distinguished by a collection of New Jersey storecards that numbers no less than 23 off-metal varieties! Presidential always has an enviable offering of Political Exonumia and this sale is no different. It begins with an enigmatic oval silver “Washington Guards” portrait piece, probably from the mid 19th century. From the John Ford Collection comes example of AJACK 1828-1 in AU; a rare James Polk Shell token (JP 1844-8) and an unlisted variety of a Lewis Cass shell token.

Our usual fine offering of Presidential Inaugural memorabilia features an extensive offering of Official Inaugural Police badges as well as our usual offering of rare and scarce inaugural medals.

The World’s Fair section is notable for the offering of a Columbian Exposition Award Medal struck in aluminum as well as for an extremely rare German Imperial Plaque for the 1904 Saint Louis World’s Fair.

The section on US Mint medals features a silver Indian Peace Medal struck for President Grant.

As an associated offering, there is an extraordinary large cream colored Copeland pitcher decorated with gilded copies of the obverse and reverse of the Grant Peace Medal on its sides. Other tantalizing lots include a choice example of CM-5, Sansom’s Peace of 1783, Washington and Franklin medal and a Department of Commerce Exceptional Service Medal in gold.

If there is one area for which Presidential has come to be known, it is our offering of art medals by renowned sculptors and medallists. The following sculptors are represented in the remainder of the sale by at least one, and sometimes, by many works:

Herbert Adams. Lea Ahlborn, Robert Aitkin, Chester Beach, Norman Bel Geddes, Edouard Blin, Gutzon Borglum, Victor D. Brenner, Charles Calverley, Gaetano Cecere, John Mowbray Clarke, Eugene Daub, Anthony de Francisci, Donald De Lue, Godefroid Devreese, Avard Fairbanks, John Flanagan, James Earle Fraser, Laura Gardin Fraser, Daniel Chester French, Emil Fuchs, Adlai Hardin, Eli Harvey, Anna Vaughn Hyatt, Marcel Jovine, Julio Kilenyi,, R. Tait McKenzie. Frederick MacMonnies, Paul Manship, Allen G. Newman, Bela Lyon Pratt J. Edouard Roine, Oscar Roty, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Louis Saint-Gaudens, Anton Scharff, Theodore Spicer Simpson, Jean Vernon and Karen Worth

Wayne Homren, Editor

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