PCNS Program Videos Online
To further the educational goals of PCNS, we are recording our meeting programs on topics of interest. Once again, as we did at the 1915 PPIE…
San Francisco Welcomes The World!
New presentations are added at the top of this list as they become available, soon after each meeting. Presentations are hosted on the PCNS Channel at YouTube. Click directly on a video’s preview image in the list below to view the presentation.
Half Unions, Half Measures, and Hidden Treasures
- Douglas Ward — August 23, 2023 — 51 mins.
- Doug tells the story of the patterns for the gold Half Union $50 pieces struck by the US Mint. Along the way he reveals the scandals, confiscation, conflicts of interests, and eventual settlement of the question: Was it legal for any US Pattern Coinage to be privately owned?
Early Toy Coins
- John Duff — July 26, 2023 — 61 mins.
- John gives an introduction to the vast field of Toy Coins — everything from Model Pennies and Spiel Marke to medieval Counters and Jetons. His main focus is on the Victorian era in Great Britain and Germany — where many were produced — particularly in Nuremberg.
Isaac F. Wood Satirical Medals:
A Work in Progress
- Wiliam D. Hyder — May 24, 2023 — 57 mins.
- Isaac F. Wood was a well-known numismatist in the late 19th Century. He was instrumental in getting the American Numismatic Society back on its feet after the Civil War, and he commissioned a number of medals relating to politics, often satirical. Bill discusses his recent research into Wood’s medals.
You Can't Take It With You:
Planning the future of your collection
- Jeff Pritchard — April 26, 2023 — 38 mins.
- Jeff gives a crash course on the various ways you can and should plan what happens when you are - inevitably - done with your collection. Specific ideas for alternatives and what to watch out for so it's not all lost to mistakes or taxes. Informative and non-technical — for every collector.
The Tokens of Thomas Spence
- Charlie Catlett — March 22, 2023 — 38 mins.
- Charlie gives a biography of Thomas Spense, noting his political pamphleteering and his use of Conders — trade tokens — to promote his ideals. Includes a discussion of his many muling varieties and the ongoing issue of tokens struck from his dies by others in the years following his death.
Chinese American Tokens
- Michael Wehner — Feb. 26, 2023 — 27 mins.
- Michael presented two short talks for February's meeting - Part 1 is a tribute to PCNS Fellow Jerry Schimmel, based on Jerry's own collection of Chinese American tokens. Includes discussion of the challenges in translating and attributing this series.
(see below for Part 2 of this program)
The Prima Ballerina Claude Bessy medal
- Michael Wehner — Feb. 26, 2023 — 7 mins.
- Michael presents the second of two short talks for February - a discussion of an art medal for star ballerina Claude Bessy, with discussion of her life and career, and a film clip of her dancing with Gene Kelly.
(see above for Part 1 of this program)
The Rise of Rome in Judaea: 161-37 BCE
- Harold Tuchfeld — Jan. 25, 2023 — 59 mins.
- From a war against Seleukid Syria to the appointment of client kings by Rome, the struggle and coinage of ancient Judaea is presented by PCNS Member Harold Tuchfeld. Includes the source of Hanukkah, and explains the phrase: to draw a line in the sand.
Joe Beeler’s Native American Portrait Medals
- William D. Hyder — Dec. 28, 2022 — 65 mins.
- PCNS Fellow Bill Hyder's examination of the portrait medals of Cowboy Artist Joe Beeler. Produced as gifts and donor awards over several deciades, his portrait medals represent different groups as well as individual portraits. Beeler's stylistic changes and techniques are also discussed. (As presented at the Newman Numismatic Portal Symposium)
Suez Canal Medals
- Paul V. Turner — Nov. 30, 2022 — 50 mins.
- PCNS Member Paul Turner's history of the Suez Canal, its failed plans, challenges and eventual success, and its commemorative medals. How a Frenchman came to lead the project and be recognized during the multi-day opening voyage.
The Nobel Prize & Other Medals of Erik Lindberg
- Michael Wehner — Oct. 26, 2022 — 40 mins.
- Past-President Michael Wehner presents an overview of the Nobel Prize, its founding, history, controversies, and its many medals. Then he takes a look at some less-famous medals by Erik Lindberg, the accomplished medalist who created the original Nobel design.
The Influence of North American Numismatics on Latin American Exonumia
- Federico Castillo — Sept. 28, 2022 — 34 mins.
- PCNS Member Federico Castillo presents an overview of Latin American tokens which feature design elements from North American Numismatics, such as Indian-head designs on coffee plantation tokens.
So-Called Dollars in the Mega Red Book
- Jeff Shevlin — Aug. 24, 2022 — 49 mins.
- PCNS Member Jeff Shevlin, the So-Called Dollar Guy, presents an introduction to the So-Called Dollars and historical medals which have become a feature addition to recent issues of the Mega Red Book. As a major contributor, Jeff also discusses the process of adding these to the book.
The 1933 Santa Monica Breakwater So-Called Dollar
- Charlie Catlett — July 27, 2022 — 32 mins.
- PCNS Secretary Charlie Catlett takes us on a tour of the full 20th Century around Southern California's Venice Beach, Pacific Ocean Park (POP), and the Santa Monica Breakwater, including the piers, their attractions, tokens, and the promoters who tried to keep them all afloat.
Tales from the Crypt:
What's Buried in the PCNS Archives
- Stephen Huston — May 25, 2022 — 44 mins.
- PCNS Fellow Stephen Huston provides a look into the goodies buried in the PCNS Archives. This presentation focuses on the physical objects housed in our collections rather than the printed records, including some unique medals, awards to and from PCNS, and some pieces with curious pedigrees.
The Henry F. Muller Token Hoard
- Michael Wehner — April 27, 2022 — 31 mins.
- PCNS Past President Michael Wehner tells the story of a contemporary collection — or hoard — of slot machine tokens kept by Henry F. Muller, a San Francisco saloon keeper. He presents evidence that the tokens circulated across town and even wider.
U.S. Grant's Farewell Dinner at San Francisco's Palace Hotel
- Herb Miles — March 23, 2022 — 47 mins.
- PCNS Past President Herb Miles presents a brief biography of the 18th President, Ulysses S. Grant, focussing on his post-presidential years as an ambassador on a world tour, culminating in his return to the US at San Francisco, where he was the guest of honor at a lavish banquet at the Palace Hotel.
The Swiss Hotel: Hospitality for Swiss Immigrants in Santa Cruz, California
- William D. Hyder — February 23, 2022 — 40 mins.
- PCNS Fellow Bill Hyder presents a summary of the history, ownership, and tokens of The Swiss Hotel in Santa Cruz from the 1860s to the 1940s, linking its various owners and operators to the hotel’s tokens, and the saloon it housed — even during Prohibition.
The Double Deuce Proof —
An Arguement for Provenance
- Douglas Ward — January 26, 2022 — 55 mins.
- PCNS Member Douglas Ward discusses the recorded and likely provenances of the 11 known 1922 Proof Dollars struck at San Francisco, probably for Farran Zerbe. These rarities — now selling for hundreds of thousands of dollars — may have all been at one PCNS meeting back in 1922!
December 2021, the annual business meeting, had no educational program or video presentation.
Hunting for Hidden Gold
- Jason Macario — November 24, 2021 — 30 mins.
- PCNS President Jason Macario tells the story of missing gold at The Old Mint in San Francisco, back in 1901 — $30,000 worth! This is the next piece of his Hardy Boys-themed Stories of the Old Mint.
Medals of the Mexican-American War Generals
- Michael Wehner — October 27, 2021 — 35 mins.
- PCNS past-president Michael Wehner explores the Mexican-American War of 1846–48 through the medals awarded to the US Generals, and also of the foremost Mexican General, Santa Ana. (An expanded version of his presentation at World of Coins 2021)
Sheep Shearing Tokens in the United States
- Federico Castillo — August 25, 2021 — 63 mins.
- The job of shearing sheep is difficult and requires considerable skill. In the Americas, sheep shearers were typically paid by the number of sheep they sheared and/or the amount of wool produced, rather than the hours worked. This pay took the form of tokens, which were redeemed on payday. Federico presents an overview of the process and tokens issued in the West.
World War II Token Coinage of the Lodz/Litzmannstadt Ghetto
- Charlie Catlett — July 28, 2021 — 45 mins.
- Charlie Catlett discusses WWII ghetto money and tokens of Lodz Poland, along with some numismatic materials relating to WWII, and Prisoner of War camps around the world.
Storming the Capitol: The Birth of our Nation's First Official Currency
- Donald Kagin — June 23, 2021 — 35 mins.
- Dr. Donald Kagin explores US paper money issued during the War of 1812 — the first banknotes authorized by the government of the USA — to finanace the defense of the US Capitol against the British during the War of 1812. A close look at these rarely seen examples of early US paper money.
Women Personified as the Nation or as Liberty on Coins
- Deven Kane — May 26, 2021 — 62 mins.
- Deven Kane presents a roundup from ancient Greek and Roman times to the modern era with examples of coinage using images of women to personify Cities, Nations, and Liberty.. Rome, France, and the USA figure large in this group.
Close Trans-Pacific Commercial Embrace: San Francisco & Hawaii - 1876 to 1916
- Harold Tuchfeld — April 28, 2021 — 58 mins.
- Harold Tuchfeld outlines the personal, political, and business alliances between San Francisco interests (i.e. Spreckles) and the Kingdom of Hawaii in the late 1800s. He follows it through from the business deal to mint royal coins to the overthrown of the Hawaiian monarchy and the annexation of the islands by the USA.
So-Called Dollars and the William H. Warner & Bro. Company
- Robert A. Jesinger — Mar 24, 2021 — 71 mins.
- Bob Jesinger explains the "Philadephia style" of so-called dollars and other medals of the late 19th century. He also discusses the relationships between the local diesinkers and engravers of the US mint, and some previously unrecorded engravers' initials on the dollars themselves.
A Lie in a Medal:
Monte de las Cruces in 1810
The Most Controversial Medal of Mexico
- Ricardo de León Tallavas — Feb 24, 2021 — 65 mins.
- Guest speaker Ricardo de León Tallavas provides the history of a Mexican medal which records a famous victory which never happened, and the recently uncovered contemporary document which tells who, when, and where it was minted.
The Star Provision Co. Ltd. Bread Token
- Dean Neald — Jan. 27, 2021 — 34 mins.
- Long-time PCNS member Dean Neald provides the history and dating information for a Canadian Trade Token which was previously unrecord and unreported. At the time of this presentation, only the single piece he illustrates is known to have survived. Learn how he researched and dated this previously unknown token.
Coinage of the Plague Years
- Stephen Huston — Dec. 23, 2020 — 58 mins.
- For 2500 years, Plagues have had a serious impact on human society, including economies and coinage. From ancient Athens right on up to 2020, plagues and pandemics have taken their tolls on lives, trade and coinage around the world. This presentation examines them in order from the first historically-recorded plagues in Greece, Rome, and Byzantium, through The Black Death, Spanish Flu, and into the 21st Century.
Lingering Wisps of Blue Smoke: Santa Cruz, California Cigar Tokens
- Wiliam D. Hyder — Nov. 25, 2020 — 58 mins.
- The stories behind the Santa Cruz cigar tokens from those days when downtown backrooms were full of political deals, slot machines, and cigar smoke. How the tokens changed before, during, and after Prohibition, and why efforts to outlaw slot machine gambling were generally ineffective.
Gone to Pike's Peak: A Mountain of Numismatic Discovery
- Scott Safe — Oct. 28, 2020 — 48 mins.
- An overview of the private coinage, tokens, and mining relatied numismatic products which came out of the Pike's Peak region during the first century after the mountain's "official discovery" around 1806. Private Gold, Exonumia, Local Dollars, etc.
The Travels of the 1841 Lattice Cuban 2 Reales CM
- Federico Castillo — Sept. 30, 2020 — 46 mins.
- An examination of the Cuban Lattice countermarks on 2 Reales Spanish coins, including where they circulated or turned up with additional countermarks, including Costa Rica and San Francisco.
The Little Rock Nine
- Herb Miles — August 26, 2020 — 27 mins.
- The story of the integration of the largest public High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1957, and the coins issued 50 years later to commemorate those historic events.
The Architectural Design of San Francisco's Second Mint
- Paul V. Turner — July 22, 2020 — 53 mins.
- Examination of the architectural design of San Francisco's historic second mint, The Granite Lady. A first look at previously unpublished original plans.
The Great Cornerstone Mystery
- Jason Macario — June 24, 2020 — 39 mins.
- The laying of the Second San Francisco Mint’s cornerstone in 1870, along with info on some rare-to-unique coins that were supposed to be stashed in its casket…if it can ever be found.
Big Trouble on Lower State Street: Santa Barbara, California
- William D. Hyder — May 27, 2020 — 51 mins.
- Saloon tokens and history of the lower State Street district of Santa Barbara, California, from the late 1800s to the 1930s. Special focus on The Lacey Saloon — the most notorious dive in the area. Riots and Arson and Drunks…Oh! My!
The Society thanks member Michael Wehner for preparing and posting these videos to the PCNS YouTube Channel.
We also thank ours speakers for preparing these programs and agreeing to be recorded and published.