Author Archives: R.W. Julian

The misunderstood dollar: Gobrecht coins cause confusion

The Gobrecht silver dollars of 1836-1839 have proven to be among the most contentious and, at the same time, the least understood coins of our numismatic history. Actually the story is rather straightforward but the clash of conflicting theories has … Continue reading

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Counterfeit cent story unusual one

Counterfeiting in the United States has generally been confined to the paper money. In the early days of the Republic this usually meant that engravers worked on private bank notes but the target changed after the introduction of the greenbacks in the Civil War and the abolition of private notes. Continue reading

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Preble honored for beating pirates

The end of the Revolutionary War in 1783 meant that the United States was now a free and independent nation but with freedom came added problems. Prior to 1776 American vessels were well defended by the British Royal Navy and it was a brave pirate indeed who chose to attack merchant shipping flying the British flag. Continue reading

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Medals honor War of 1812 leaders

The War of 1812, which began in June of that year, was to produce several gold medals honoring victorious leaders of that conflict. This year marks the 200th anniversary of that conflict and the medal under discussion here was awarded to Kentucky Governor Isaac Shelby for his critical role in the resounding victory at the Battle of the Thames in Canada. Continue reading

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Croghan medal last for War of 1812

This year marks the bicentennial of the War of 1812, which began in June of that year. The British refusal to honor the neutral rights of American ships on the high seas led to a declaration of war by Congress and until the peace treaty was signed in late 1814, a series of battles on land and sea marked the struggle between Britain and the United States. Continue reading

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San Francisco Mint began with gold

When the average collector thinks of California and the San Francisco Mint, one of the first images that may come to mind is that of the discovery of gold by James Marshall in January 1848. In reality, however, gold had been discovered in what is now California while it was still part of Mexico. Continue reading

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First Carson City coins dated 1870

The Carson City Mint has long attracted numismatists because of its mystique in being an odd player in the world of coinage. It struck coins for only 23 years, from 1870 to 1893. The CC mintmark is, to many, an interesting alternative to modern coins with little history. Continue reading

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King of Siam set hit of 1962 ANA

Because numismatics first became a national hobby more than 150 years ago, there has been a sufficient amount of time for myths and legends to grow about the coinage of the United States. Continue reading

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More coin myths analyzed by author

Because numismatics first became a national hobby more than 150 years ago, there has been a sufficient amount of time for myths and legends to grow about the coinage of the United States. Some of these stories are of course quite true, but others are not and it is the aim of this article and a prior one in the Oct. 11 issue to correct some of the misinformation which occurs from time to time. Continue reading

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Some facts are really hobby myths

Because numismatics first became a national hobby more than 150 years ago, there has been a sufficient amount of time for myths and legends to grow about the coinage of the United States. Some of these stories are of course quite true but others are not and it is my aim to correct some of the misinformation which occurs from time to time. Continue reading

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