1923: nickel and birth-year.

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1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mi 12.09.18 09:08

One of the many occasions—great and small—that coins get linked with are birth-years. I got to thinking about Buffalo nickels and birth-years while I was thinking about the “nickel-squeezer” and his son, the WWII infantryman. That, and something I’d read, got me to thinking about 1923 nickels like this one…
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villa66
 
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mi 12.09.18 09:12

American nickels were kid’s coins through and through, and 1923 nickels like this one worked hard during the ‘20s and ‘30s helping to entertain the kids born that particular year.

But 1923 was an unlucky birth-year for a lot of young men—not only for Americans, but around the world. Buffalo nickels, though, were the coins that American boys were spending when Pearl Harbor was attacked in December, 1941. By New Year’s Day, 1942, the American boys born in 1923 were all 18-year-olds.

It’s a great age, 18. Well, usually. But in wartime? For folks caught up in the shitty arithmetic of total war, 18 can be pretty tough.

Author Phil Nordyke wrote a 2006 book about the paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne called The All Americans in World War II. Something he wrote really stuck in my mind. Right after the close of the war in Europe, in the Spring of 1945, while the troops were still in place, and still unsure whether they would be going to the Pacific to fight more, came this, from an interview—

“Staff sergeant Ross Carter, with Company C, 504th [Parachute Infantry], was one of the very lucky men who served in a rifle company in the 82nd Airborne Division from North Africa to Germany. ‘My friends call me a refugee from the law of averages. My regiment still exists as a name, but the regiment in which I trained, fought, and almost died, now lies buried in obscure army cemeteries in ten countries.’”

The boys born in 1923? The 18-year-olds of 1942? For too many of them, by 1945 it was something like “Now…buried in obscure army cemeteries in ten countries.”

The lucky ones got home, and probably had reason to put a nickel into a payphone to call ahead to their wives, or their folks, or maybe to phone a taxi from the airport, dock, or train station….
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villa66
 
Registriert: Do 15.10.09 14:13

Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mi 12.09.18 09:16

But the unlucky ones? The paratroopers of the 82nd who lay “buried in obscure army cemeteries in ten countries,” what had been in their pockets? What coins of theirs went to Kansas City?

(During WWII Kansas City, Missouri, was the collection point for the personal effects of the American soldiers, sailors and airmen who were killed or missing. Into the middle of the country would come the train-cars, in from the coasts, in from the war in the Pacific, in from the war in Europe.)

The ten countries spoken of by Staff-sergeant Ross Carter of Charlie Company? The possibilities, I think, are these: the U.S., Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Italy (Sicily), Italy (mainland), U.K., France, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany.

So here’s one candidate for the trip through Kansa City, and then home to a family with a Gold Star in their window. An aluminum-bronze 5-franc piece coined in Paris in 1939 for use in Algeria, found in the U.S. and hardly touched. But touched, nevertheless.

v.
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon Mynter » Do 13.09.18 16:47

When the US-boys where stationed in the UK in early 1942 , this " Rocking Horse Crown " could have been put aside as a souvenir.
Unfortuanatly I could not find a direct link to the very episode of " Foyles War " (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33XatWuJH70 ) dealing with the arrival of the US- troops in rural Hastings, an entry wich to many a tradition- loving Englishman might have seemed like a " Clash of Cultures ". Anyway, here is a surview of this particular part of one of the greatest detective-dramashows ever :

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foyle%27s_War_(series_4)#%22Invasion%22

Rocking horse crown 1935 001 - Kopi.JPG
Rocking horse crown 1935 002 - Kopi.JPG
Rocking horse crown 1935 002 - Kopi.JPG (30.49 KiB) 961-mal betrachtet
Zuletzt geändert von Mynter am Sa 15.09.18 14:20, insgesamt 1-mal geändert.
Grüsse, Mynter
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Sa 15.09.18 08:53

I can't get started on the British and the folks they sometimes called "The Occupying Power;" I won't stop. :D Too much fun. (And not--the number of left-side-driving Britons killed by the right-side-driving Americans in WWII traffic accidents, for example.)

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The Rocking Horse crown is an inspired choice for the topic here. Here's part of my notebook entry for the '37 crown:

A few years afterward, during the war, these 1937 Coronation crowns (and those of the 1935 Jubilee) were being snapped up by American servicemen at a pound apiece. The London correspondent of The Sydney Morning Herald reported that “American servicemen, inveterate coin collectors, have done much to stimulate interest in England…[and]…American soldiers are sending up values.”

Sending up values? More like driving up prices, which was a common theme in Anglo-American relations at the time.

Good choice!

;) v.
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » So 16.09.18 09:01

Thinking about all this today I finally made a connection (thanks Mynter), and added this to my entry for Australia's 1938 crown:

This particular coin came from a militaria shop. Which made sense, once I remembered the London correspondent of The Sydney Morning Herald had reported that “American servicemen, inveterate coin collectors,” were snapping up modern British crowns at a pound apiece. That news would have been of interest back home, because American servicemen were then flooding into Australia like they were into the U.K. Prices for crowns like this one, I’ll bet, soon went to a pound—if they weren’t there already.

:) v.
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon Mynter » So 16.09.18 17:02

Nice Aussie- Crown.I believe 1938 is the scarcer year?
I am adding the british Coronation Crown. designed for Edward VIII the Coat of Arms- reverse was now realised for George VI who soon should be the voice who gave Britons strength during bleak wardays of sweat and blood :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHY2UzOonig

Crown 1937 001 – Kopi.JPG
Crown 1937 002 – Kopi.JPG
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mo 17.09.18 08:04

Mynter hat geschrieben:Nice Aussie- Crown.I believe 1938 is the scarcer year?



It is a pretty tough coin, that I was really happy to have lucked into. Somewhat controversial too--often criticized for diluting the meaning of the 1937 crown of identical design. (My favorite homegrown theory is that it's a silent commemorative of the 1938 Australian Sesquicentennial--but that's just me talking to myself.)

And "silent commemorative," by the way, is something I learned from you, in our conversations here...thanks.

Anyway, here's the Aussie crown, I'm sure, that most American servicemen came home from the Pacific with, the 1937:

:) v.
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villa66
 
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mo 17.09.18 08:11

And please let me backtrack a moment to say your '37 Coronation crown is a beautiful thing. My two Australian crowns, on the other hand, had careless owners somewhere along the way.

:wink: v.
villa66
 
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon Mynter » Di 18.09.18 19:56

villa66 hat geschrieben:And please let me backtrack a moment to say your '37 Coronation crown is a beautiful thing. My two Australian crowns, on the other hand, had careless owners somewhere along the way.

:wink: v.

Thanks. A lucky and modestly priced ebay- find.
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon Mynter » Di 18.09.18 20:00

villa66 hat geschrieben:
Mynter hat geschrieben:Nice Aussie- Crown.I believe 1938 is the scarcer year?



It is a pretty tough coin, that I was really happy to have lucked into. Somewhat controversial too--often criticized for diluting the meaning of the 1937 crown of identical design. (My favorite homegrown theory is that it's a silent commemorative of the 1938 Australian Sesquicentennial--but that's just me talking to myself.)

And "silent commemorative," by the way, is something I learned from you, in our conversations here...thanks.
:) v.

Or perhaps the last batch of the " 1937- Crown- order " was not struck before 1938 and , by a misunderstanding , issued with the date of the actual year, as hapend with the finish Olympia- coin of 1951 ?
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Mo 24.09.18 08:50

Mynter hat geschrieben:Or perhaps the last batch of the " 1937- Crown- order " was not struck before 1938 and , by a misunderstanding , issued with the date of the actual year, as hapend with the finish Olympia- coin of 1951 ?


Sounds like a possibility—also kind of like the 10M Canadian cents ordered in 1858. Only a small portion of the order could be produced in ’58, so the large majority is dated 1859. Today the 1858 is scarce, and the 1859 is very common.

The 1937 Australian crown is known to have been intended as a circulating commem, and was supposed to have been merely the first of this new addition to the stable of circulating Australian coin denominations.

I did see a rather random mention of a 1M-coin mintage of the 1938, most of which was melted because the new crown wasn’t making it as a circulation coin. I’ll try to find out more—because at this point I don’t know quite what to believe.

(My granddaughter is again safely back home, so maybe there’ll be some extra time around here.)

:D v.
villa66
 
Registriert: Do 15.10.09 14:13

Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon Mynter » Mo 24.09.18 16:16

The 1937/38 beeing an addition to the coinrun would make sense, regarding the huge gap between the florin and the 10- shilling-note. For reasons unknwon to me, Australia never issued a halfcrown, so a fiveshilling -piece could have made payments easier,but also heavier. Perhaps the extra weight of extra large coins was the reason why an alleged project of introducing the crown failed ?
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Di 25.09.18 10:19

I agree...I too think the large size and heavy weight of the new "Casey's Cartwheel" (as it was sometimes called) were the cause of its ultimate failure as a circulation coin.

And I wonder--can't help it, after the 1902j 1-pfennig conversation--if maybe a desire for complete year-sets didm't somehow figure into the 1938 pieces. The 1937 crowns were the only Australian coins dated 1937. The new George VI coinage didn't debut until 1938, so some new crowns of that date would've been needed to complete sets of the new series.

Just a thought.

I like your observation re the Australians and their non-existent half-crown. Strikes me that they may have been decimally-minded early-on.

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Turning back to the coins in soldiers pockets, a German 50-pfennig sitting on my desk (and heisted, temporarily, by my little girl) reminded me of some family history that made it into my notebook some 30 years or so ago (some 20+ years after I found the coin it described).

I left the entry intact (and apologize for it in advance). I fished out the particular coin and photographed it.

Keeping with the idea of unlucky birth-years, I note the 1921 date of this coin--the 18-year-olds of 1939:
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Zuletzt geändert von villa66 am Di 25.09.18 10:35, insgesamt 1-mal geändert.
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Re: 1923: nickel and birth-year.

Beitragvon villa66 » Di 25.09.18 10:21

x: This 1921d 50-pfennig rolled out of Granny’s clothes hamper at 407 Grand while I was helping her during a summer visit. (It was their first summer in the new house.) I had no idea what this coin was. Scoured my ‘65 edition of Stack’s little catalog of buy-prices. It wasn’t there. I just knew my fortune was made. But it turned out to be dirt common and valueless, to most people anyway. I can’t agree. Granny decided it must have come back to the U.S. with her brother Richard who was a B-17 ball-gunner shot down over Germany during WWII. A German girl hid Richard and a buddy for three days in a wine cellar. Later she helped them find the Allied lines. Their next Fort was shot up too, but that wasn’t unusual, sad to say. Of the 12,731 Flying Fortresses built, fully 4,750 were combat losses. There were eight or ten men in each one. Remember Richard’s and Granny’s code, too. She used to like telling that story so much, especially the part about his having had a hot dog (aka frankfurter, i.e. Frankfurt) or a cheeseburger (i.e. Hamburg) at the mess hall. I’ve since read, of course, that a lot of families worked out private codes in attempts to evade the WWII censors. And that the censors were very aware of it, too. (65)

v.
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