Renaissance of American Coinage 1909-1915 examines the origin, design and early production of US coins during this six-year period. Coins covered include: Lincoln cent, Buffalo nickel and all four Panama-Pacific Exposition commemoratives. These chapters have the latest and most complete information available from original sources. Although the cent and nickel have been discussed previously, notably in David W. Langeís excellent books on these two coins, Renaissance of American Coinage 1909-1915 treats the subjects in much greater depth. The book presents full versions of many key documents as well as many newly discovered documents, photos and drawings. As was shown in the 1916-1921 book, businessman Clarence Hobbs plays an important role in disrupting both artistic creativity and the mint's production plans.
In between these two familiar coins, the book delves into the mysterious tenure of mint director A. Piatt Andrew, and his crusade against pattern coins. This culminated in the temporary seizure of coins from collector John Haseltine and the senseless destruction of hundreds of pattern coin hubs and dies dating back to the 1860s. There is also the first extensive information on Charles Barberís Washington nickel designs, the Coinage Act of 1912, experiments with alloys and square and holed coins, and the sale of a secret Treasurerís hoard of gold coins for benefit of the Philadelphia Mint collection.
The book concludes with a look at the origin and design of the Panama-Pacific commemoratives. Newly discovered artistís drawings show what was initially planned for the gold dollar, fifty dollar and half dollar. There is also an interesting medal design by Barber that anticipates his quarter eagle. The PPIE information not only includes many previously unknown documents about these coins, but also presents some of the daily the reports to Washington about continuing problems with Farran Zerbe and his medal and coin sales. A final short section presents some of the correspondence of T. Louis Comparette, curator of the Philadelphia Mint collection, discussing his sale of hand-selected and pyx coins to museum collections.
Publication Date: 2007