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erickso1 commem collection : #4 Oregon 1926 - s

11 posts in this topic

Welcome. After reading Llafoes post ATS about pics and descriptions for registry sets and how much people enjoyed looking and learning from these, and also taking a cue from current member LeeG, I decided to create a post that over time will feature all 50 of my commems (as I add them). The posts will contain pics, who I acquired it from, who took the pics, my written descriptions, facts about there creation (usually pulled from my Breen/Swiatek or Bowers Encyclopedia), and typically a fun fact related to the coin that you may not have known.


New coins will be added to the original post, and the title will be updated. Grades will not be posted as I want the focus to be on the coins and facts, not the grade. If you really want to know, shoot me a pm. Other questions I will try to answer within the thread.


If a coin is upgraded as I go along, the new coin will replace the old coin, relevant info will be updated and the coin and info will be moved to the top.


The format may change a bit over time as I work through it, but for know this should be a good structure.


On to the first coin.

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#4 – Oregon – 1926 - s





Acquired from Commemdude PCGS BST , Photography by Broadstruck


Obverse (Native American) - dark blue covers the left third. Has a steel blue tint to it, very pretty when combined w/ the luster. The rest of the coin is covered in goldish orange toning spots (some might call it mottled).


Reverse (wagon ) - Incidently the reverse toning is essentially the same: dark blue covers the left third. Has a steel blue tint to it, very pretty when combined w/ the luster. The rest of the coin is covered in goldish orange toning spots (some might call it mottled).


Stats (only for this particular year and mint, as there are 8 years of coinage from 1926 thru 1939 and three different mints were used). 100,055 struck, 55 reserved for assay, 17,000 returned for re-melting. (S/B)


Artist/Sculptor : Obverse, Laura Gardin Fraser. Reverse : Drawings by James Earle Fraser, completed by Laura Gardin Fraser. (S/B)


Obverse : Native American adorns the obverse (non tribe specific). A blanket is draped over his shoulder and bow in hand, but as Swiatek/Breen noted, no peace pipe, indicating a possible defensive posture. To the left of the Native American, on the US map, a line of wagons heads to the coast along the Oregon Trail. (S/B)

Reverse : A Conestoga wagon led by a pioneer w/ wife and baby, and drawn by oxen heads to the setting sun in the west. It is not known what the five stars represent. (S/B)


Fun Facts : If you think frisbees were invented in the 1960s, you're wrong--by about a hundred years. Children on the Oregon Trail threw frisbee-like devices back in the mid-1800s. But they weren't made of plastic--they were made of buffalo dung.

During the great western migration, the entire Great Plains region was covered with buffalo chips--they were unavoidable. And yes, kids occasionally tossed them about in a frisbee-like manner. But the chips had a much more practical purpose for the emigrants--they were burned for fuel.

There was no firewood along much of the Trail, so the only alternative was dried buffalo dung. Even though the pioneers were hardy, they didn't much enjoy gathering up bushels of chips every night.

The chips burned surprisingly well, and produced an odor-free flame. Usually, each family had its own campfire, but sometimes everyone contributed their chips for one big bonfire. source




Laura Gardin Fraser won the design contest for the new Washington Quarter, but was ignored by then Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon disregarded her design.



Civil War Football Game : Oregon Agricultural College defeated University of Oregon 16-0. source


And someone always died of dysentery




#3 – Stone Mountain – 1925




Acquired from Northeast Numismatics, Photography by Northeast Numismatics


Obverse (Jackson and Lee) : Golden reddish toning encircles the two riders like a fiery sunset going from light gold to reddish gold at the rims. Luster isn’t overwhelming but adds greatly to the character of the toning, giving the color the effect of silver flecked paint.

Reverse (eagle) : Toning is more of a goldish/blue/purple mix, heavier, with the luster more subdued then the reverse, but pretty in its own right and in its own way.


Stats : 5,000,000 authorized, 2,314,709 struck, 4709 held for assay, 1,000,000 melted. (S/B)

Artist/Sculptor : Gutzon Borglum


Obverse : The riders are General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson and General Robert E. Lee. The thirteen stars at the top represent the thirteen seceding Southern states.

Reverse : An eagle is perched upon Stone Mountain (whom is reference on the obverse) (Bowers). There are 35 stars scattered in the background although there exact meaning is not quite known. The inscription reads “MEMORIAL TO THE VALOR OF THE SOLDIER OF THE SOUTH”. (S/B and Bowers)


Fun Fact: While Borglum designed the coin, and was commissioned to sculpt the actual Stone Mountain, he did not finish it. He finished Lee’s head, but was apparently quite a prikly sort and quit the job, leaving to go carve Mount Rushmore.

June 13 - Charles Francis Jenkins achieves the first synchronized transmission of pictures and sound, using 48 lines, and a mechanical system. A 10-minute film of a miniature windmill in motion is sent across 5 miles from Anacostia to Washington, DC. The images are viewed by representatives of the Bureau of Standards, the U.S. Navy, the Department of Commerce and others. Jenkins calls this "the first public demonstration of radiovision.source


In baseball Jimmie Foxx doubles in his first major league at bat. Lou Gehrig pinch hits to begin his 2130 consecutive games played streak and Ty Cobb was mean to everyone (see below). source






#2 - San Diego – 1936 D (actually known as the California-Pacific International Exposition Half)





Acquired from Kyrptonitecomics on PCGS/Ebay. Photograph by Kyrptonitecomics


Obverse (Minerva) – Rim toning that goes from golden redish/orange to blue to green to yellow as it moves out to the rim. Lots of luster that has a slightly rosy/gold tint to it (at least under my light)

Reverse - (tower) – More vibrant rim toning on the reverse in essentially the same color patterns as the obverse. The toning on the reverse though reach’s further into the center of the coin. Lots of luster.


Stats: 1935-s, 250,132 for distribution, 132 held for assay. 180,000 returned for recoinage. 1936-d 180,092 for distribution, 92 held for assay. 150,000 melted. (Swiatek/Breen)

Artist/Sculptor: Robert Aitken (S/B)


Obverse: Minerva, goddess of wisdom, holding shield and spear. Draped over shield is a cornucopia. Face on shield is Medusa and slogan above face is Evreka (Eureka) . To Minerva’s right is the California Grizzly Bear. In the background is a miner and a ship. (S/B)

Reverse: The dome is the Chapel of St. Francis, the tower is the California Tower. (S/B)


Fun Fact:

Minerva is the virgin goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, crafts,magic, and the inventor of music. She is often depicted with her sacred creature, an owl, which symbolizes her ties to wisdom

A statue in Guadalajara, MX, and on the Medal of Honor.



California Grizzly :

The legend of the great bear.

A giant grizzly bear, which had been threatening both man and cattle, was killed near the home of James and Ada Lovett in 1866. Lovett and several men dragged the giant animal to where it could be loaded onto a wagon and drove eight miles to the Vineyard Ranch of Col. A.E. Maxcy who had been offering a reward for the capture of the bear. The bear was hoisted onto Maxcy’s cattle scales where it weighed 2,200 pounds and was declared to be the largest grizzly bear ever killed in California.

The bear was skinned and cut up, with more than one pound of lead found inside its head. Col. Maxcy kept the skull of the bear as a souvenir until around 1900 when it was reportedly sold to a museum in the south, believed to be either Georgia or Tennessee. Efforts in recent years to locate the skull have been unsuccessful.



#1 – Iowa - 1946





Acquired from Broadstruck on the PCGS BST. Photograph by Heritage.


Obverse (eagle) – golden orange is the main color, with hints of green and yellow peaking through. The rim in the upper left quadrant has a nice red glow to it and the date 1846 has reds and blues .


Reverse (building) – the lower right quadrant has the same golden orange toning with hints of yellow, green and red showing through. The upper left quadrant has a smoky appearance to it when tilted in light. The toning pattern is most likely caused by a fingerprint, but I like to think it was a tiny man with an eraser.


Stats: 100,057 struck for distribution, 57 reserved for assay. 99,000 sold at issue, 500 reserved to be distributed in 1996 and 500 in 2046. (Swiatek/Breen)

Artist : Adam Pietz (Swiatek/Breen)


Obverse: Eagle with state moto “OUR LIBERTIES WE PRIZE AND OUR RIGHTS WE WILL MAINTAIN” 29 stars depicting Iowa as the 29th state

Reverse: the Old Stone Capital in Iowa City


Fun fact: 1946 was the first year of the Big 9 conference for football. The Hawkeye team was led by future pro football hall of famer Emlen Tunnell.




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Love the idea behind your post! (thumbs u


A very nice Iowa example and I look forward to watching your collection and this thread grow! :)






Courtesy of the U. S. Commission of Fine Arts:

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Great thread!! I will enjoy this as I have just started this set too and my first coin, 1925 Stone Mountain, is on the way!

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Very nice so far! :)


There are many interesting "stories" around the Stone Mountain Half.

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There will be a brief hiatus in this thread as I have commems 5 and 6 lined up, w/ # 5 in hand and # 6 on deck. I just don't have photos at this particular juncture but will in the near future (a couple weeks at most).


But, I can tell you that # 5 will be a colorful Grant, and # 6 will be a very nice Lafayette.


In the mean time if anyone has any suggestions, comments, concerns, etc, please feel free to either post or pm me.

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