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Civil War Tokens: Value Me As You Please

During the US Civil War, metal monies were hoarded for their value, resulting in a shortage of available coins. The Union government issued official "paper coins" that weren't backed by by gold or silver. This "faith paper" lost value quickly, and for a short while, stamps were official currency. That didn't take, either, so enterprising individuals took it upon themselves to mint their own coinage. These are now known as Civil War Tokens (CTWs), and were made and used between late 1862 and mid 1864. On April 22, 1864, Congress set the weight of coins and set punishment for counterfeiting coins of up to one thousand dollars and imprisonment up to five years. Yet there are over ten thousand varieties of tokens, representing 22 states, 400 towns and about 1500 individual merchants. Melvin and his son Dr. George Fuld wrote key books in the CWT field, creating the rarity scale and composition key used by most numismatists. Given sheer number of CWTs, starting a collection might be daunting. Enter collector Ken Bauer, whose method breaks down the vast world into smaller collections, from anvils to watches and so much more.
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 20, 2011 - 9 comments

 

The Chuck E. Cheese Ouroboros

In 1977, Nolan Bushnell allowed Gene Landrum to bring Chuck E. Cheese [yt] to life as a family-friendly access point to Atari games. This, perhaps, explains the pizza. [more inside]
posted by batmonkey on Dec 31, 2008 - 17 comments

Token Sucking

A Disgusting Practice Vanishes With the Token "Officially, the crime is classified as theft of Transit Authority property. But among transit police officers it is more accurately and less delicately known as token sucking. Unfortunately for everyone involved, it is exactly what it sounds like." (Originally from NYT. More here.)
posted by Artifice_Eternity on Apr 28, 2003 - 18 comments

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