Did Augustus Saint-Gaudens serve on a Mint Design Selection Committee before he designed the 1907 gold coins?
Saint-Gaudens was a member of the committee that rejected all of the new coin designs submitted by U.S. artists (but boycotted by the Mint engraving staff) on June 3, 1891.
Would it be alright to store my zinc cents in a jar of motor oil to help them retain their luster?
This would be high on my list of methods not to use to protect coins. Besides the hazards of unknown chemicals in the oil, as well as the ever-present sulfur, you are only postponing an inevitable “degreasing” with potential harmful effects on the coin.
Did the gold discoveries in California help our trade with the Orient?
While it created a demand for goods from the Orient, it also created a financial problem. The Oriental merchants would accept only silver coin, as they had a poor regard for gold dust or gold coins.
What’s the story on the controversy about the Virginia 1773 half penny or penny?
The coin is struck on an oversize planchet and often referred to as a penny. However, Eric Newman indicates that it is on a planchet cut to the same dimensions as an Irish half penny, slightly larger than the English half penny size pieces that are more common. Newman considers the piece a trial strike.
I have a Canadian 1959 half dollar that has the incorrect color on the coat of arms. Is this a valuable error?
Under the rules of heraldry, a white field is plain, but the 1959 halves have horizontal lines (blue) in the bottom panel of the arms. The lines were removed in 1960, making the 1959 a one-year type, but since all 3.1 million of the coins were minted that way it has no effect on the value.