ICTA Task Force to Combat the Counterfeiting of Coins

ICTA Task Force to Combat the Counterfeiting of Coins

This article was first published online January 30, 2017 on Coin World and is available here.

Beth Deisher | Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force

Former Coin World editor Beth Deisher has been named director of an Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force committee formed by the Industry Council for Tangible Assets. Portrait provided by ICTA; coin image courtesy of ANACS.ICTA Task Force

ICTA Task Force

The Industry Council for Tangible Assets board of directors approved at their Jan. 4 board meeting the formation of an Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force committee to mobilize law enforcement resources to protect the integrity of U.S. coinage by educating officials on the economic impact and growing threat counterfeit circulating, collectible, and bullion coins pose to the collecting community as well as the public at large.

The board also approved the hiring of Beth Deisher as director of anti-counterfeiting. The committee and Beth’s salary will be financed by donations to a separate, dedicated fund. Continue reading

George Washington Half Dollar Leads Renewed Program

George Washington Half Dollar Leads Renewed Program
From the Memory Bank: After 28-year hiatus, nation’s first president is called upon to launch new series

This article From the Memory Bank series was first published online February 14, 2017 and in the February 17, 2017 issue of Coin World available here.

George Washington Half Dollar Leads Renewed Program
1982 George Washing Half Dollar Commemorative Coin

The 1982 George Washington half dollar was the first U.S. commemorative coin since the 1950s. Coin World file images.

From a marketing perspective, the U.S. Mint had to play catch-up when, after a 28-year hiatus, it began striking modern commemorative coins in 1982, like the George Washington Half Dollar.

Donna Pope, shortly after being confirmed as Mint director, visited the San Francisco Assay Office, then the Mint’s fulfillment center. She was exasperated to find mailed paper orders for Proof and Mint sets being moved from wire basket to wire basket. The average time for a customer to receive shipment of an order was six to eight months. Continue reading

Citizen Coin Review Panel

Citizen Coin Review Panel floated during 1991 interview
From the Memory Bank: Editor proposes idea to subcommittee head

This article From the Memory Bank series was first published online January 12, 2017 and in the January 20, 2017 issue of Coin World available here.

Citizen Coin Review Panel floated during 1991 interview

Citizen Coin Review Panel - Cash In Your CoinsRep. Esteban E. Torres, D-Calif., took the reins as chairman of the House Banking Subcommittee on Consumer Affairs and Coinage at the beginning of the 102nd Congress and immediately began to identify issues and problems that needed to be dealt with relating to coinage.

During my first interview with him in May of 1991, Chairman Torres and his staff said they were already being courted by various special interest groups seeking commemorative coin programs that could generate millions of dollars in surcharges from coin sales to fund their projects. Continue reading

Congress Holds The Real Coinage Power

Congress Holds The Real Coinage Power, When it’s Interested
From the Memory Bank: Powerful chairmen of oversight committees can sway coinage matters

This article From the Memory Bank series was first published online November 10, 2016 and in the December 21, 2016 issue of Coin World available here.

congress holds the real coinage power

Republicans occupied the White House in the 1980s and early 1990s, but Democrats controlled the House of Representatives. Democratic chairmen of the subcommittee with jurisdiction over coinage included Esteban E. Torres, left, Richard H. Lehman, middle, and Frank D. Annunzio, right.
Coin World file photos, and public domain image.

While presidential candidates garner most of the headlines every four years, the elections that most affect the numismatic community are in the House of Representatives and the Senate, most specifically the party that controls each chamber and the committees of jurisdiction.

Republican presidents occupied the White House throughout the decade of the 1980s and into the early 1990s, but Democrats controlled the House and held sway over committees and subcommittees.

When I joined Coin World in 1981, Rep. Frank D. Annunzio, D-Ill., was chairman of the House Banking Subcommittee on Coinage and Consumer Affairs, which had oversight jurisdiction over the U.S. Mint and all matters pertaining to coinage. Continue reading

Statue of Liberty Gold $5 Commemorative Coin

Statue of Liberty Gold $5 Commemorative Coin Flawless by Design
From the Memory Bank: Perfection in grade a result of U.S. Mint efforts

This article From the Memory Bank series was first published online November 10, 2016 and in the November 21, 2016 issue of Coin World available here.

1986 Statue of Liberty $5 gold commemorative coin

Designer of the 1986 Statue of Liberty gold $5 coin, Elizabeth Jones shows the one she struck on Oct. 18, 1985, during a first-strike ceremony at the West Point Bullion Depository.

The coin collecting community was stunned when both Uncircu­lated and Proof versions of the 1986 Statue of Liberty gold $5 commemorative coin were de­clared perfect and assigned the grade 70 in July 1986.

While most of the attention centered on the revolution underway in grading, it was evident that more factors than grading were at play.

Grading professionals and seasoned numismatists pointed to the balance in obverse and reverse design elements as the primary factor leading to the perfect coin. That achievement was singly attributable to the knowledge and expertise of the coin’s designer and sculptor, Chief Sculptor-Engraver Elizabeth Jones, appointed by President Reagan in 1981.

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Grading The First ‘Perfect’ Coin

Remember when grading the first ‘perfect’ coin was considered shocking?
From the Memory Bank: Statue of Liberty commemorative gold $5 half eagle makes history

This article From the Memory Bank series was first published in the October 24, 2016 issue of Coin World available here.

Grading the Perfect 1986 Statue of Liberty Gold 5-Dollar Coins - Cash In Your Coins

The 1986 Statue of Liberty gold $5 series was the first documented to achieve perfection, with specimens graded MS-70 and Proof 70 in late June 1986. Images shown illustrate the grades, but are not the first coins to receive the top grade. Coin images courtesy of Heritage Auctions and eBay seller NJI Coins.

Question: What U.S. coin was first to be documented “perfect” and the first to be graded Mint State 70 and Proof 70? With literally millions of coins encased in plastic holders today bearing the grades MS-70 and Proof 70, some may question, “Why is this important or worth a mention?’’

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