Brasher Doubloon, American Firsts, Bebee notes headline National Money Show…

The American Numismatic Association will present a stunning Museum Showcase of numismatic treasures and rare currency worth more than $20 million at the 2015 National Money Show, held March 5-7 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon.

“The ANA Museum Showcase was created to highlight spectacular numismatic rarities at ANA conventions,” said Douglas Mudd, curator of the ANA’s Edward C. Rochette Money Museum. “It features museum-quality displays of objects rarely available for public view, making each showcase a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the legendary icons of numismatics and learn the stories behind them.”

The famed Brasher Doubloon, the first circulating gold coin struck in the United States, is one of the featured exhibits in the Museum Showcase. Its creator, Ephraim Brasher, was a neighbor of George Washington while he lived in Philadelphia. The Brasher doubloon is the first gold coin with a distinctly American design struck to the weight and purity standard that would later be adopted for U.S. gold coins. The Brasher Doubloon has been generously loaned to the ANA by Adam Crum and courtesy of Monaco Rare Coins.

“The Brasher doubloon is truly a spectacular coin – not only is it a genuine rarity with high monetary value, it is a historical treasure-trove because of what it represents as the first gold coin struck for the nascent United States,” Mudd said. “It is beautiful and historically important as a record of the early design concepts discussed in Congress for U.S. coinage as the doubloon was being struck by Ephraim Brasher just a few blocks away.”

Other features in the Museum Showcase include:

  • The American Firsts series, which includes the 1652 Pine Tree shilling, 1776 Continental dollar, 1787 Fugio cent and the 1792 half disme, all of which represent firsts in American numismatic history. The Pine Tree shillings were the first silver coins to be struck in English North America, while the Continental dollar represents the first coins struck for the United Colonies in revolt from Great Britain. The Fugio cent is the first official coinage of the United States, and the 1792 half disme is one of the first coins struck by the United States Mint.
  • The 1933 Indian Head $10 gold eagle, which is the only gold U.S. coin of 1933 that is legal to own (apart from a single 1933 double eagle). Along with the $20, most of the 312,500 eagles minted in 1933 were melted down when gold was demonetized by Executive Order #6260 shortly after their release. Only about three dozen examples are known today, and almost all are in mint state.
  • The Numismatic Legacy of Alexander the Great, which explores Alexander’s vast numismatic legacy, which would continue to his successors and later kingdoms and cities for generations.
  • Traditional Money of the Northwest: Potlatch coppers, a tradition among the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast. A potlatch is a gift-giving feast, often lasting for several days, that was a means of economic exchange.  The most significant of all gifts were large sheets of shield-shaped copper decorated with a variety of tribal crests. These objects are known collectively in English as “coppers” or “shields.” The value of these pieces was primarily measured in prestige, but they were also valued in terms of bride price, blankets or slaves to name a few.
  • The famous Bebee collection of paper money.  Featured notes include the series of 1934 $10,000 and the series of 1914 red seal $100 Federal Reserve notes, as well as the “Watermelon Note,” a Series 1890 $100 Treasury note that gets its nickname from the large, bloated zeroes that appear on its back.

The Portland National Money Show features more than 500 numismatic dealers with extensive inventories; the Collector Exhibits area; and a wide range of educational presentations and seminars. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 5, and Friday, March 6; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 7. ANA members are admitted free. Admission is free for everyone on Saturday, March 7. For more information, go to NationalMoneyShow.com.

About the American Numismatic Association

ana_medals_lgThe American Numismatic Association is a congressionally chartered nonprofit educational organization dedicated to encouraging people to study and collect money and related items. The ANA helps its 25,000 members and the public discover and explore the world of money through its vast array of education and outreach programs, as well as its museum, library, publications, conventions and seminars. For more information, call 719-632-2646 or go to www.money.org.

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