Hi again, TheNumisMaster here. One of the major things I love most about the best hobby in the world, are the obscure stories and rumors surrounding various coins, and the people associated with them. (Man, does that make you sound like a geek, or what?).
One of my favorite rumors from history is based around George Washington. Shortly after the revolutionary war was won, America was born. T his brand new America was thrown into an unfamiliar process while being $85 million in debt. Because of this debt, and the fact that the early government could not tax its people yet, we had no money to mint new silver coins, let alone the silver needed. In 1783 the Government had already approved the design for the quint, and those were in production. However, they simply did not have the silver needed for the half-disme. (Pronounced deem). The rumor is that when brand new president George Washington heard this, he snuck into his kitchen one afternoon, and melted down Martha (his wife's) fine silverware, and donated the silver for use of the mint.
Another good one is a story that took place in or shortly after 1933, when the executive order was initiated which ordered that gold coins must be turned in to be melted into gold bars (those which currently sit in Fort Knox). A man working at the office in charge of collecting said coins wanted some of these gold coins for himself. He was thoroughly checked while entering and leaving to make sure he wasn't keeping any, but this did not stop him. One day, while going into work, he noticed a dead rat on the ground. With a plan in mind, he left the rat where it was (like any sane person) and went to work as usual. When he left, sure enough, the rat remained where it was. The next day, he hid the rat in his pocket, and later proceeded to stuff the rat with $5 and $20 gold coins. When no one was watching, he would throw the valuable rat out the 3rd story window, and retrieve it when he left. It was ingenious really, I mean, who would touch a dead rat? Besides the man who wants to stuff it will gold, of course. This went on for weeks, before one day, the rat couldn't take the pressure anymore, and burst on impact with the ground. The man was was arrested upon leaving the building.
Please leave any other fun stories you are aware of in the comments, and I'll include them in #2 (: