The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 21, Number 28, July 15, 2018, Article 12


Ken Berger submitted these notes and images regarding Breen-Taxay Authentication Certificates. Thank you! -Editor

I too have a Breen-Taxay Certificate but it differs slightly from the one shown by David Lange. Whereas David's ID number is typed directly on the card, mine is typed on a separate piece of paper and is glued to the card. Upon holding the certificate up to a light, I am able to see a different number typed on the card. Also, Dave's certificate shows a Member Number but mine is blank.

Dave's certificate shows that something additional was, at one time, stapled to the bottom of the certificate which, I assume, was the formerly stapled holder containing the note. My certificate shows no such additional stapling. However, my certificate shows an embossed seal on both the certificate and the photocopy. The seal consists of two circles. Between the circles along the bottom, I can read "FIRST COI (obviously First Coinvestors). In the center of the seal, I can read C.A.C. (obviously, for Colonial American Coin Club). Above it is the word BY and above that I can read ARANTEE (obviously GUARANTEE). Above that I can read TH TIC (possibly AUTHENTIC). Finally, between the two circles at the top, I can read what appears to be AMERICAI CIII. Perhaps it said Colonial American Coin Club.

I've attached scans of both the front and the back of the certificate along with the note for which it applies.

Breen-Taxay certificate front

Breen-Taxay certificate back

In addition, I am including scans (front and back) of authenticity certificates issued by ANACS and INS prior to the advent of slabbing. The ANACS certificate consists of a B&W photograph of the coin with the certificate glued to it, starting on the front and folded over and glued onto the back. The INS certificate also consists of a B&W photograph of the coin with the certification typed and signed on the back of the photograph.

ANACS certificate front

ANACS certificate back

INS certificate front

INS certificate back

Wayne Myers of Pittsfield, MA submitted this information relating to the Breen-Taxay authentication certificates. Thank you! -Editor

Keep up the great work with The E-Sylum; it's a weekly treat.

After seeing the recent posts for the Breen and Taxay authentic cards I searched back through some of my material. I have four of the Taxay items from 1980 which I have included the scans for. The interesting thing is that these are sequential registry numbers.

The other scan that is more interesting is from Walter Breen to Don Lutes concerning the "Discovery" 1943 copper cent. This post card was sent I believe around 1959. The coin was given to Don Lutes as change in 1947 at the Pittsfield High (MA) lunch line.

Breen-Lutes postcard front

Breen-Lutes postcard back

While the original post card has faded over time the text is as follows:

Dear Mr. Lutes:

I delayed answering your letter until I could see a copy of the newspaper in question and read the statements attributed to me. I no more think your coin is worth $40,000 than I think XXXX it worth a dime: I do not believe that the Beyer coin brought anywhere near half the $40,000. * Yet; in order to attract enough collector attention to make it worthwhile for you, for French, and for me, I have had to bring the coin to the attention of the newspapers. It will be exhibited at Natl Coin Week and the Central States Convention ( 24-26 April) * $40,000 alleged price for Beyer 1943 Bronze -- acto Las Angeles Examiner. probably gross exaggeration. I was misquoted; I would be very glad to get(crossed out) anywhere near $10,000, but don't expect it. There are probably others around; I want to sell the thing for the best price before they turn up and lower the value to less than your minimum."

Written in pencil at the top right of the post card is " It is nevertheless genuine."

Breen was not the best typist from the looks of the postcard. Breen also carried the coin around showing various dealers for about 1 year. The coin was never sold and returned to Don Lutes.

Don Lutes has shared this information and the card that is part of the file he maintained for the coin. Unfortunately, Don's health is failing and he must finally part with his prize possession. The coin will probably be auctioned later this year.

Taxay Two Cent card front

Taxay Two Cent card back
#3561 Two Cent

Taxay Nickel card front

Taxay Nickel card back
#3562 Nickel

Taxay Dime card front

Taxay Dime card back
#3563 Dime

Taxay Three Cent card front

Taxay Three Cent card back
#3564 Three Cent Nickel

Regarding the mystery of what happened to Don Taxay, Dick Johnson writes:

I knew Don Taxay very well for a short period, even backing him in a venture for a business of building numismatic displays for banks. Just before he disappeared he ran a full page ad in Coin Word for authentication work. It seems anything he did – while a brilliant numismatist – was less than successful.

Don had a very tender psyche. I suspect he was peaked, he could not make a living in numismatics so gave it up and joined some religious cult. Maybe this seems to have satisfied him. I liked the guy, but cannot vision him in a saffron robe with a shaved head.

To read the complete article, see:

DWN E-Sylum ad01

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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