Rare Coins

collectiblesModern numismatics is the study of the coins of the mid 17th to the 21st century, the period of machine struck coins. Their study serves more the need of collectors than historians and it is more often successfully pursued by amateur aficionados than by professional scholars. The focus of modern numismatics lies frequently in the research of production and use of money in historical contexts using mint or other records in order to determine the relative rarity of the coins they study. Varieties, mint-made errors, the results of progressive die wear, mintage figures and even the socio-political context of coin mintings are also matters of interest.
 

Paper Money

iStock_000001024738XSmallIn the early 1690s, the Massachusetts Bay Colony was the first of the Thirteen Colonies to issue permanently circulating banknotes. The use of fixed denominations and printed banknotes came into use in the 18th century.

In the early 1700s each of the thirteen colonies issued their own banknotes, called colonial scrip. Later, the Continental Congress issued continental currency to support the Revolutionary War. The federal government of the United States did not print banknotes until 1862. However, almost immediately after adoption of the United States Constitution in 1789, the United States Congress chartered the First Bank of the United States and authorized it to issue banknotes. The bank served as quasi-central bank of the United States. The bank closed in 1811 when Congress failed to renew its charter. In 1816, Congress chartered the Second Bank of the United States. When its charter expired in 1836, the bank continued to operate under a charter granted by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania until 1841.
 

Tokens & Medals

In the study of numismatics, tokens are coin-like objects used instead of coins. The field of tokens is part of exonumia. Tokens are used in place of coins and either have a denomination shown or implied by size, color or shape. "Tokens" are often made of cheaper metals: copper, pewter, aluminium, brass and tin were commonly used, while bakelite, leather, porcelain, and other less durable materials are also known.

The key point of difference between a token and a coin is that a coin is issued by a governmental local or national authority and is freely exchangeable for goods or other coins, whereas a token has a much more limited use and is often (but not always) issued by a private company, group, association or individual.

In the case of "currency tokens" issued by a company but also recognized by the State there is a convergence between tokens and currency. The best known example, the trade tokens of Strachan and Company, were issued in South Africa in 1874 and are today recognized as that country's first widely circulating indigenous currency.
A Medal, or Medallion, is generally a circular object that has been sculpted, molded, cast, struck, stamped or some way rendered with an insignia, portrait or other artistic rendering. A medal may be awarded to a person or organization as a form of recognition for athletic, military, scientific, academic or various other achievements. Medals may also be created to commemorate particular individuals or events, or even as works of artistic expression in their own right; artists who focus their talents on the creation of medals or medallions are termed a medalist. There are also devotional medals which may be worn as a matter of religious faith. Medals are popular collectible items either as a form of exonumia or of militaria phaleristics.
 

Antique Pocket Watches

iStock_000007280093XSmallThe watch was first created in the 16th century, initially in spherical (Pomander) or cylindrical cases, when the spring driven clock was invented. These watches were at first quite big and boxy and were worn around the neck. It was not for another century that it became common to wear a watch in a pocket.
 

Antique and Estate Jewelry

iStock_000005524980XSmallEstate jewelry can be divided into Antique Jewelry and vintage jewelry, but refers to items made after WWII.
 

Political Buttons & Other Campaign Items

Besides buttons, campaign memorabilia include almost everything you can think of: toys for children, sewing notions for women, hand-held fans, watch fobs, paperweights, hand mirrors, pocket combs, potholders, posters, calendars, pens and pencils
 

World's Fair and Exposition Items

Universal Exposition or Expo (short for "exposition", and also known as World Fair and World's Fair) is the name given to various large public exhibitions held since the mid-19th century. They are the third largest event in the world in terms of economic and cultural impact after the FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games. They have been organized for more than one and a half centuries — longer than both the (modern) Olympic Games and the World Cup.
 

Historical & Political Autographs

iStock_000008169134XSmallSome of the most popular categories of autograph subjects are Presidents, military figures, sports, popular culture, artists, social and religious leaders, scientists, astronauts and authors.
 

Historical Memorabilia

iStock_000008087804XSmallA souvenir (from French, for memory), memento or keepsake is an object a traveler brings home for the memories associated with it. Souvenirs include clothing such as T-shirts or hats, postcards, refrigerator magnets, miniature figures, household items such as mugs and bowls, ashtrays, egg timers, spoons, notepads, and many others.
 

Military Medals, Insignia & War Souvenirs

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A military decoration is a decoration given to military personnel or units for heroism in battle or distinguished service. They are designed to be worn on military uniform.

Today military decorations include:
  • Orders of Chivalry;
  • Bravery awards, in the form of a cross, star or medal on a ribbon;
  • Distinguished service awards, in the form of a cross, star or medal on a ribbon;
  • Campaign medals worn on a ribbon;
  • Service medals worn on a ribbon;
  • Awards for entire units.