• Merchant Tokens For A Summer of Sun, An Autumn of Rain

        Those on the east coast enjoyed a long 2011 summer with innumerable days of sunshine. As September began, and most days thereafter, the Fall season has been equally an innumerable span of rainy days.

        Before the days of air conditioning, swimming pools, car defrosters, and windshield wipers, the only defense against such weather were hats, parasols, and umbrellas.

        Below please find several hatter, parasol, and umbrella tokens from the mid 19th century, recently added to my cabinet.

        As with all merchant tokens, these were issued to customers as change in the value of 1-cent each, at a time when U.S. circulating coinage was limited in availability.

        Below is Miller PA-420, struck in silvered brass. Remnants of the silvering is still visible with details of the token's motto. Despite its desilvering, the specimen still exhibits EF-40 details.

        Below is Miller PA-10F, Dodd & Co hatters, brass, about VF-30. This particular specimen is a repunch. DOOD was originally struck across headband. Upon detection of error, the second 'O' was repunched with a 'D.' Upon close inspection, the left-hemisphere of the loop is still visible underneath the stem of 'D'.

        Below is Miller OH-11A, S.C. Miller, reeded, struck in brass, MS-63.

        Below is Miller Pa-424 struck in brass. Despite its reverse scratches, the specimen still exhibits Extra Fine details.

        Below is Miller PA-10, Dodd & Co hatters, silvered brass, MS-60.

        Below is Miller Pa-139, struck in brass. The specimen is Mint State.

        Below is another Miller OH-11A, S.C. Erwin, also reeded and struck in brass, AU-55.

        - Cheetah