David Gladfelter submitted this obituary of author Gary Patterson of New Jersey. Thanks. -Editor
We recently learned of the recent death of Gary
Lee Patterson, a charter member of the New Jersey Exonumia Society (NJES) and longtime editor of its quarterly publication, Jerseyana. He was 77.
Gary worked for 40 years as a meat cutter for retail stores and military commissaries in New Jersey and Massachusetts, retiring in 2001. He was born in Altoona, Pa., and is
buried in the veterans memorial cemetery in North Hanover Township, Burlington County, New Jersey.
Gary published three major token
and medal catalogs. His 310 page United States Swastika Tokens, Medals, Watch Fobs and Good Luck Charms, 1907-1936 received a third place Mishler Cataloging Award from the
Token and Medal Society (TAMS) in 2009. This was followed by a short supplement about 2011. Gary pointed out that "you will need to educate some people that these tokens and
symbol were used for ‘Good Luck' and had nothing to do with the Nazi use of the swastika." Gary's collection has been consigned for sale to Steve Hayden.
New Jersey Exonumia Society old timers: Standing from left: David Gladfelter, Bob Schopp, Gary Patterson; Seated: Al Zaika. Gary is holding a set of scrip notes from his
home town of Manchester, N. J.
In 2007 R. W. Colbert made for Gary a unique hand-engraved personal swastika token with his initials on both sides. Since this token is not in the catalog, it is illustrated
Prior to that, Gary published The Whitehead & Hoag Co., Newark, N. J., Storecards, Tokens, Medals, Tags and Watch Fobs, the result of many years of collecting,
research and correspondence with fellow collectors. Gary also catalogued New Jersey Encased Cents, a joint effort with James Treadway, the late Dave Wilson, Rocco
DiGiacomo, Bob Slawsky and the late Al Zaika, which was published by the New Jersey Exonumia Society. All of the foregoing catalogs are well illustrated.
In December, 1979, TAMS published Part 1 of Gary's catalog of New Jersey food stamp tokens. Part 2 was published in October, 1980, by the Food Stamp Change
Newsletter, a short-lived venture by Jerry P. Schimmel undertaken as the U. S. Department of Agriculture was ending the use of tokens in its food stamp program. Al Zaika
continued the list of New Jersey food stamp tokens which has not yet been published.
Gary was a frequent speaker at coin clubs throughout New Jersey and in Pennsylvania and Delaware on a variety of token and medal topics, until health problems curtailed his
Surviving are his wife of 54 years, Lois; two sons, Gary of Manchester and David of Standish, Maine; a daughter, Shannon of Sharon, N. H.; a brother, Eldon of Duncansville,
Pa.; a step-brother, the late Alfred Stanslaw of Altoona who passed away two weeks ago; a step-sister, Kay Ann Burkett of Altoona; two grandchildren and two
Gary's research and publishing efforts were groundbreaking in the exonumia field. He will be missed, but his contributions to the hobby live on. -Editor
Wayne Homren, Editor
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