coinfodder's Blog

17 Feb 2021

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 21- Massachusetts

Coins-United States | coinfodder

As we continue our little gaunt up and down the Atlantic Coast (at least for the last 3 installments of our journey), we stop in the land of lobster rolls, Clam Chowder, and crab products galore. Welcome to Massachusetts...

03 Feb 2021

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 20- Maryland

Coins-United States | coinfodder

We head from the land of lobster to the land of crab, in many forms, including live, and fried in delicious cake form. Welcome to the state of Maryland, everyone...

26 Jan 2021

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 19- Maine

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Well folks, we are on I-95 North, to the Northern-most point in the Continental US, home of lobster galore (gross, I like crab legs better) and lighthouses every 5 miles, to the point you don't stop for a photo anymore. Welcome to Maine, folks...

20 Jan 2021

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 18- Louisiana

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Ironically, could the bandKatrina and the Wavesbe a poorly timed omen for the Hurricane of the same name? Katrina itself didn't kill, but horrible planning by the government and the following storm surge (waves) killed. I still do like the song, Walking on Sunshine. Anyways...

05 Jan 2021

New Commems- Christina McAuliffe and the National Law Enforcement trio

Coins-United States | coinfodder

More ranting about the US Mint is about to begin here, everybody, with the recent release of the designs of the Christian McAuliffe and the Nation Law Enforcement museum trio of clad, silver, and gold coins...

11 Nov 2020

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 14- Indiana

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Hello folks! And today we cross the Wabash into the Hoosier State.HISTORYIndiana was first settled by the Paleo-Indians after the glaciers melted. In 1673, Cavalier and La-Salle reach the present-day South Bend on the Saint Joseph River. The French fur-traders followed them into the the area around South Bend and the Wabash River. In 1732, Sieur de Vincennes built a trading post near the present-day Fort Wayne, and later building a town which he would name after himself. In 1779, the region became a hotspot, as George Roger Clark's ragtag group of men captured Vincennes and Fort Sackville from a much larger group of Redcoats. In 1811, the region became a hotspot in the Indian Expansion Wars, particularly the battle of Tippecanoe, which sent William Henry Harrison into popularity. Later during the war, great Indian chief Tecumseh was killed during the battle of Battle of Thames. Finally, in 1816, Indiana became a state. During the Civil War, the state rallied one of the biggest responses for troops, and was the subject for Morgan's Raid in 1863.During the Great Depression, many farmers displaced went to California, but some went East to Indiana, causing the government to create a welfare service, which flounders dramatically. WWII revitalized the economy, with the state producing 8.5% of the nations war production.Today, Indiana is a thriving state, with massive industry and great spots to live, work, and play. The state is home also, to one of the largest Amish populations in the state, were auctions are held every Sunday for hand tools. Famous citizens of Indiana include Ambrose Burnside, Abe Lincoln, Mike Pence, James Dean, Carole Lombard, Michael Jackson (of course), Kurt Vonnegut, and Larry Bird.AND NOW, Time for the CoinsIndiana has probably the only sport's related 50 state quarter in the entire series. On the front is a outline of Indiana, with the 19 stars on the flag. And on the front, is a Indy Car, which represents the state's biggest contribution to the sporting world (I much prefer Demolition Derby). The coin also features the word "crossroads of America". The coin was released in 2002.On the ATB quarter, released in 2017, is George Rogers Clark NHP. The park memorializes the Battle of Fort Sackville, the main British Fort guarding the greater frontier. Onsite at the park is a massive stone and granite monument that looks like it belongs at the National Mall than in small town Vincennes. The coin itself, is three men, representing the soldier and French volunteers that served under Colonel Clark. Being Veterans Day, we would like to say thank you to them.Indiana has no classic commemoratives?! O no, O no, O no! Don't worry! I have another topic up my mind. Let us visit our friend Tippecanoe.William Henry Harrison was born a British subject in Virginia, in Virginia. Soon after becoming an adult, he began his military and political career, serving as governor of the Northwest Territory and as an officer in the US Army. He would soon be all over Indiana, fighting Indian tribes left and right, culminating with his series of conflicts with Tecumseh's Confederacy. These battles were the Battle of Tippecanoe, in 1811, and the Battle of Thames, were his troops killed Tecumseh himself. Afterwards, Harrison was promoted to General. After years of public service, the exhausted public servant returned to his home in North Bend, Ohio, until the Whig Party nominated him to be their presidential candidate in 1836, when he was defeated by Martin Van Buren, a New York man who had risen out of poverty, like his predecessor, Andrew Jackson. But, in 1840, running on the ticket "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too", and calling Van Buren a rich aristocrat (which wasn't true), he won.His first mistake in office happen only 5 minutes after he was inaugurated. In Washington, D.C, January 20th is usually pretty cold. But the overly proud war hero chose not to wear his overcoat, showing him as strong, as he launched an 8,000 word speech, the longest in Inaugural history. Soon after, the old man caught a cold, and died soon after, leading the less charismatic John Tyler of Virginia to become president. He would be the oldest president every elected or forced into office until Ronald Reagan took the oath in 1981.Harrison is commemorated on the $1 coin, and his wife Anna is commemorated on the $10 gold piece.¡Adios, amigos! And later, we will head to American Gothic (guess were this is)!

04 Nov 2020

Fun With Nickels! A Brief Overview of Nickels in American Society

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Well everybody, if this looks like a paraphrased article out of a book, IT IS. Most, if not all of my information will be coming from the Mega Red Book of Coins, 3rd Edition. However, I will not be plagiarizing and this article will be from the heart. So, with that out of the way, we can begin...

28 Oct 2020

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 13- Illinois

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Ello' everyone. And today, we raft down the Missouri from Idaho, and up the Mississippi to Illinois.The earliest known settlers of Illinois were the pre-Columbians that lived in the town of Cahokia, near present-day Collinsville. After the pre-Columbians lost power, the Illiniwek Confederation, a loose group of tribes allied with each other. This group gave the state its name. In 1673, Jacques Marquette (the college namesake) and Louis Jolliet explored the Mississippi and Illinois River. After this, Illinois would remain in French hands until the nation's loss in the French and Indian War, which would remain uninhabited by colonists due to the Proclamation of 1763.In 1818, Illinois became a state, but resistance continued by Indian groups, most notably Chief Black Hawk, who was finally defeated 1832. In 1839, the Latter Day Saints were started in Nauvoo, but in 1844 the group, led by Brigham Young, left the state after the killing of Prophet Joseph Smith near Carthage. (Numismaster, you are from Utah. Can you fact-check the above?). In 1860, Springfield lawyer Abe Lincoln became the 16th President, leaving the state and never returning. During the Civil War, the state produced many fine troops, including U.S. Grant, commander of all Union Forces. After the war, in 1871, Mrs. O'leary's cow kicked a kerosene lamp and started the Great Fire of Chicago, after which the city would be completely reinvented into a marvel of the US.Today, Illinois is still the Midwestern state it always was, attracting tourists to the Navy Pier and Lake Michigan, and following the trail of Lincoln. Famous citizens include Ray Bradbury, Al Capone, Miles Davis, Charlton Heston, Abraham Lincoln, and Robin Williams.Obviously, what comes to mind first in coins are the ATB and 50 state Quarters. The 50 state quarter was one of the first created by the AIFP and was considered one of the highlights of the 50 state quarter series. On it, is the words "Land of Lincoln" and a picture of Lincoln with a book. To the left of him is a strip of farmland and a silo. On the right, is a piece of the Chicago skyline with the Sears Tower in full view. This represents how Illinois is a crossroads of both rural and urban.On the ATB quarter, is one of the many rock features of Shawnee National Forest, a large expanse of forest and rock formation. The design on the 2016 coin is Camel Rock, one the most famous of the rock formations in Shawnee.For the classic commemorative lovers, we have a little bit extra to cover today. In 1918, a commemorative was released celebrating the 100th Birthday of the state. On the front was a younger, beardless image of Lincoln (Remember, Lincoln only grew whiskers as a campaign promise). On the back is the state seal, a "fierce eagle atop a crag, clutching a shield and carrying a banner..." (Bressett, 3rd Edition, 1091). The coin was issued by the Illinois Centennial Commission through various outlets for the grand price of one dollar.In 1937, an Illinois town was the subject of a coin. This time, the coin was celebrating the 100th anniversary of the town of Elgin. The dates were 1673 (no relation to the town- when Marquette and Joliet went up the river, and 1936. The fellow on the front was a generic pioneer, most likely a French Fur-trader from around the era. On the back is shameless self advertising for the Pioneer Memorial statuary group, the group that sponsors these coins. The people that released them however, were the Elgin Centennial Monumental Committee, headed by none other that L.W. Hoffecker, who somehow seems to get his greedy hands on every single darn Classic Commemorative.In 2009, the final commemorative commemorative somethin' outa Illinois was released. Celebrating the 200th anniversary of Birthday of Abe Lincoln, the coin was a Silver Dollar designed by Justin Kunz, who is now designing every coin in sight. The front is dated 2009 and features a bust of Lincoln, and on the back, is the final 43 words of the Gettysburg Address, surrounded by a laurel wreath.Thanks folks! And see you later, as we travel to the across the Wabash River.

27 Oct 2020

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 12- Idaho

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Lets stop ranting about the US Mint from last week and let us fly from Hawaii to the land of spuds.Idaho is one of the most desolate states, having first been settled 14,500 years ago. These people became the Nez Perce and the Shoshone. Advancing several thousand years, and we find that the French are sailing up the Missouri River into the rich fur-trading region. They left their mark on the state, as we now have many French-named cities, such as Coeur-de-Alene, Boise, and so on. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln made Idaho a part of the Oregon Territory, due to the fact that it was in the Oregon Valley. Later in the 1800's, the Indian's were driven out of Idaho, but not before a determined push by Chief Joseph to lead the Nez Perce into Canada In 1890, the territory of Idaho was officially named a state, and contributed an alternate source of silver for mintage. In the 1960's, the mining industry shut down nearly for good, and Idaho's economy went into a tailspin.Today, Idaho remains the desolate location it was during the age of the fur-trappers, landing only on the news when so-called Neo Nazi's used Idaho as it's base. The state is a popular tourist destination, and the state remains famous for its spuds. Famous Idahoans include Edgar Rice Burroughs and Chief Joseph. And who can forget the blue colored football field?Unfortunately, Idaho is thin on the ground when it comes to coins, so I minus well mention what I could find. The 50 State Quarter Design and the ATB Quarter design were all good designs. The 50 State Quarter depicts a facsimile of the state, with the state bird, the peregrine falcon, which is one of the fastest birds in the world.The ATB Quarter on the other hand, was released last year, and was depicting the Frank Church Wilderness River of No Return. The nearly unknown National Forest is the largest single wilderness unit outside of Alaska, another testament to the desolation of the state. The coin itself features the Salmon River, and a female rafter, a touch of designer Emily Damstra, rafting down some of the rougher rapids.Unfortunately, the state runs dry on coins, so I minus well mention the "Free Silver" which was BIG in Idaho.The free silver movement were those in favor of free silver usage in coins and other uses, instead of economic fixed supply. As ridiculous as this sounds, the silver and gold standard were important parts of the economy until after the "Great War", which cost gold reserves dearly. The free silver, in effect wanted a 16-1 fixed price ratio to do so, lowering the gold standard used by the nation at the point. At the time, gold was the only unlimited metal, while silver had a strict limit, like the budget top.If this is sounding like jargon, it only really meant one thing- more silver- more sales- more money= profits. The Free Silver put its best hopes in William Bryans Jennings, who lost handily in 1896 and 1900 to William McKinley.Thanks for traveling with me so far. And next time, we are head to the Land of Lincoln.

14 Oct 2020

The Fifty States of Coinage- Part 11- Hawaii

Coins-United States | coinfodder

Aloha! And today, as we leave the Peach State for Volcano World. I think based on the first word you can where that is.Hawaii was first discovered by Europeans when Capitan James Cook sailed to the islands in 1778. He and his party would be butchered by the natives a year later. In 1795, the House of Kamehameha diverted control of all the Hawaii Islands to him and his house. They would rule the islands until 1872. During that timespan, the House tried to convert many natives to Christianity, inviting missionaries, most notably Saint Damien (of Molokai, patron saint of lepers) to start a leper colony there. After King Kamehameha VI died without a heir, turmoil broke out in Hawaii. In 1891, Queen Lili'uokalani became the last monarch of Hawaii, changing the Constitution (for the third time). Then, after a non-violent coup-d'état, the monarchy was overthrown and Hawaii became a US Territory.Later during the 20th Century, the US Navy saw the importance of the island and sent most of their Pacific Naval Fleet to Honolulu, at Ford Island Naval Base, near Pearl City. On December 7th, 1941, Isoroku Yamamoto lead the attack on this fleet at Pearl Harbor. Despite massive loss of life, the attack was considered a failure by Japanese High Command, due to the fact no aircraft carriers were sunk that way. And then WWII happened, and you know what happened after that. In 1959, Hawaii became the last state to join the union.Today, Hawaii is a popular tourist destination, bringing plenty of tourists over to the always-warm isles. The volcanos on the island are alive and well, and so are the stories of "Pele's Curse" (more on that later). Famous citizens include Kamehameha I, Daniel K. Inouye, Ellison Onizuka, andDuke Kahanamoku.To mind first for most people is the 50 State Quarter and the ATB quarter. The 50 States Quarter was released in 2008, the last of the major 50 states. On it is a facsimile of the state. Also is a drawing of the statue of King Kamehameha I, which is also in the U.S. Capital as part of the National Statuary Collection. On the ATB quarter, is a volcano at Hawaii Volcanos National Park, issued in 2012. The volcano is erupting, which goes to show when you steal rocks from Kilauea, you will be punished by Pele (the curse is that if you steal a piece of volcanic rock from Kilauea, you will be cursed, like one man who lost his job. The visitor center states that people have mailed back their pieces of rock, telling of their misfortune. Don't believe me? Search up Pele's curse.). Anyways, both coins are pretty neat and are easily found on the marketplace today.Hawaii coins from before Hawaii became a US possession are interesting in their own right. There were two major types, done by the United States for the Kingdom. They were regular, circulation issues, and plantation tokens.Circulation issues were designed mostly by Charles Barber, who made Kamehameha V look like some European guy. Most, if not all of these coins had the face of the current Hawaiian Monarch slapped onto one side, and on the other side some other design. After Hawaii became a US Territory, the legality of these coins were stripped. Most were made in 1883. The 1881 Five Center is not an official issue. Buying one of these will set you back quite a bit.On the other hand, plantation tokens were private tokens issued for use in Hawaiian company stores. (Bowers, Mega Red 4th Edition, 1293), much like Civil War or hard time tokens. The odd denomination of 12-1/2 was related to the wages of workers in the sugar plantations, and was also related to the Spanish eight-Reales coin.See you later on our road trip of the states!


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