DISASTER RELIEF

The London Mint Office Makes Special Dambusters Presentation Porthcawl Museum

The London Mint Office, a trusted and respected partner for a large number of British coin collectors and mints across the world, has made a special donation to Porthcawl Museum to mark the area’s strong links with the famous Dambusters Raid, which flew 75 years ago during WWII.

The London Mint Office prides itself on putting history into the hands of its customers, and it did just that when their resident Historian and Cultural Ambassador Justin Robinson presented Porthcawl Museum with a special commemorative Operation Chastise Mission Pack & Limited Edition One Pound Coin. The pack contains accurate replicas of the blueprints, photographs, maps, plans, and other documents that once briefed Squadron 617 for their historic night-time mission over Nazi Germany. These will be displayed at the museum for the local community together with a beautiful commemorative coin struck to mark the anniversary.

The event also welcomed Belinda Brown, the second cousin of one of the heroes of the Dambusters Raid, Gordon Yeo. She brought along some treasured family mementoes to honour the Barry man, who was the only Welshman to take part in the mission. Belinda Brown said: “It’s an honour to be invited to talk about my second cousin Gordon Yeo and the part that he played in the Dambusters mission. I’ve spent years researching his story and so it’s wonderful to see his memory lives on thanks to The London Mint Office’s work and Porthcawl Museum. As part of his tribute, I am donating a part of the plane wreckage that was salvaged to Porthcawl Museum.”

South Wales has a unique connection to the daring Dambusters Mission, which successfully breached German dams with a new ‘bouncing bomb’. No less than fourteen of the sixteen aircraft involved in the mission, codenamed Operation Chastise, included crew who had trained at RAF Saint Athan in the Vale of Glamorgan, and RAF Stormy Down, near Pyle.

Justin Robinson said: “Gordon Yeo was born in Barry in 1922, and joined the fledgling 617 Squadron as a gunner. He was the youngest member of the crew that successfully breached the Möhne Dam. Their actions under heavy fire caused catastrophic flooding in the region and major disruption to the Nazi war machine. Sadly, all seven crew members lost their lives when their Lancaster plane was shot down over the Dutch coast as they tried to return home. Gordon was just twenty years old.

“The London Mint Office is delighted to present this commemorative pack and coin to the Museum to pay tribute to Gordon Yeo’s bravery in volunteering for one of the most dangerous missions of the war, and to remember South Wales’ close ties to the Dambusters.

Rob Taylor, of Porthcawl Museum said: “The Operation Chastise Mission Pack will enhance the small exhibition that Porthcawl Museum already has to the Dambusters as part of the RAF 100 display presently on show. The Museum is in the process of obtaining an authentic RAF Hut to make a permanent RAF exhibition in the grounds of the Museum and this pack will then become a valued part of that project.”

Three receive 2018 ACTF Al Kreuzer Memorial Award

The Industry Council for Tangible Assets recognized three individuals Aug. 15 for their outstanding work in combatting counterfeiters and those who traffic in counterfeit coins and currency in the United States.

Doug Davis, Nicholas L. Tranchitella, and Richard Weaver received ACTF’s annual Al Kreuzer Memorial Award presented during ICTA’s annual banquet held in Philadelphia during the American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money.

The ACTF award — in the form of a three-inch, antique bronze medal — is named for long-time California coin dealer Alan “Al” Kreuzer, who died in 2016. His business, Alan Kreuzer Rare Coins and Collectibles, was in Castro Valley, Calif. Kreuzer was instrumental in identifying counterfeit certified holders that made their way around the Bay Area. Kreuzer’s daughter, Chandra, upon learning about ICTA’s establishment of the Ant-Counterfeiting Task Force in January of 2017, donated $50,000 in honor of her father. The donation played a key role in launching the work of the task force.

Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent Nicholas L. Tranchitella, Delaware Valley Rare Coins President Richard Weaver, and NCIC President Doug Davis were awarded ACTF’s 2018 Al Kreuzer Memorial Award for outstanding work in combating counterfeiters and those who traffic in counterfeit coins and currency in the United States. (ICTA image by David Crenshaw)

Davis is founder and president of the Numismatic Crime Information Center and currently serves as the city manager of Pantego, Texas. He is a former Pantego chief of police and has more than 30 years of experience in law enforcement and the numismatic industry. Founded in 1987, the mission of NCIC is to serve as a national and international resource for collectors, dealers and law enforcement in the education, prevention and investigation of crimes involving coins, paper money, tokens and related numismatic items. NCIC fulfills its mission through maintaining a database of numismatic crimes and stolen property; providing technical assistance to local, state, federal and international law enforcement agencies in the investigation and prosecution of numismatic crimes; offering training to local, state, federal and international law enforcement agencies in the investigation of numismatic crimes; and educating collectors and dealers in the prevention of numismatic crimes and the important role each plays within the investigative process. Davis provides valuable leadership in two of ACTF’s Work Groups – Expert Networks and Education-Law Enforcement.

Tranchitella is a Special Agent in the Cherry Hill, N.J., office of the Homeland Security Investigations division of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. He was the lead investigator in the case against Jonathan A. Kirchner, who currently awaits sentencing on charges of falsely impersonating an agent of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and unlawfully importing counterfeit coins and bars into the United States. Special Agent Tranchitella arranged for the special loan of a selection of counterfeit coins, bars, and grading service holders confiscated in the Kirchner case for exhibit in a public display at the Pennsylvania Convention Center Aug. 14-18 during the WFOM so the public can gain an understanding of the wide range of items being counterfeited as well as the highly deceptive nature of the fakes. Items in the exhibit constitute about 20 percent of the counterfeits seized in the investigation. If the fake coins and bars in the exhibit were genuine, their current market value would be more than $10 million.

Richard Weaver, president of Delaware Valley Rare Coins in Broomall, Pa., played a crucial role in the apprehension of Jonathan A. Kirchner. Two of Kirchner’s victims, a couple, came to Weaver’s coin business seeking an evaluation of 49 Morgan dollars they had purchased from Kirchner, whom they had met via Facebook. Weaver determined that all of the Morgan dollars were counterfeit and informed the couple. They told Weaver they had trusted Kirchner because he told them he was an ATF agent who was selling coins as a side business. He displayed his ATF badge on his Facebook site and wore it when he met with them. They also told Weaver that they had a tentative appointment with Kirchner to purchase more items in a couple of days. Upon learning the details, Weaver immediately contacted ACTF’s Expert Network and ACTF alerted its contacts within federal law enforcement, who immediately identified the ATF badge on Kirchner’s Facebook site as counterfeit. Working with the couple, ATF and Homeland Security Investigations set up a sting operation with an undercover agent posing as the sister of the couple. Kirchner was arrested in the act of selling counterfeit coins to the undercover agent.

After the arrest, law enforcement officials executed a search warrant of Kirchner’s house and Customs and Border Protection intercepted packages shipped to him from China. Weaver has served as law enforcement’s numismatic expert in the Kirchner case, devoting many hours to identifying all the counterfeit coins, bars, and grading service holder components. In addition, he has provided a current market value for each item if it had been genuine so that law enforcement can determine the potential harm to victims and to the marketplace.

Weaver is a member of ACTF’s Research Work Group and is also vice president of the Professional Numismatist Guild.

United States Mint Lifts the Curtain on Designs for the 2019 America the Beautiful Quarters® Program

PHILADELPHIA – The United States Mint revealed the official designs for the 2019–dated coins in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program today. The designs were unveiled at the American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money in the Philadelphia Convention Center.

Designers in the Mint’s Artistic Infusion Program (AIP) created the new designs which will be displayed on the reverse (tails side) of quarters honoring Lowell National Historical Park (Massachusetts), American Memorial Park (Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands), War in the Pacific National Historical Park (Guam), San Antonio Missions National Historical Park (Texas), and Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness (Idaho). The designs were sculpted by the Mint’s Sculptor-Engravers.

Lowell National Historical Park

  • Designer: Joel Iskowitz
  • Sculptor-Engraver: Phebe Hemphill

This design depicts a mill girl working at a power loom with its prominent circular bobbin battery. A view of Lowell, including the Boott Mill clock tower, is seen through the window. Inscriptions are “LOWELL,” “MASSACHUSETTS,” “2019,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

American Memorial Park

  • Designer: Donna Weaver
  • Sculptor-Engraver: Phebe Hemphill

This design depicts a young Chamorro woman in traditional dress at the front of the Flag Circle and Court of Honor. She is resting her hand on the plaque whose text honors the sacrifice of those who died in the liberation of Saipan. Inscriptions are “AMERICAN MEMORIAL PARK,” “N. MARIANA ISLANDS,” “2019,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

War in the Pacific National Historical Park

  • Designer: Joel Iskowitz
  • Sculptor-Engraver: Michael Gaudioso

This design portrays American forces coming ashore at Asan Bay, strengthening the number of troops on the island in the fight for Guam and its eventual liberation. Inscriptions are “WAR IN THE PACIFIC,” “GUAM,” “2019,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

San Antonio Missions National Historical Park

  • Designer: Chris Costello
  • Sculptor-Engraver: Joseph Menna

This design depicts elements of the Spanish Colonial Real coin to pay tribute to the missions. Within the quadrants are symbols of the missions: wheat symbolizes farming, the arches and bell symbolize community, a lion represents Spanish cultural heritage, and a symbol of the San Antonio River represents irrigation methods and life-sustaining resources. Inscriptions are “SAN ANTONIO MISSIONS,” “TEXAS,” “2019,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness

  • Designer: Emily Damstra
  • Sculptor-Engraver: Renata Gordon

This design depicts a piloted drift boat on the rushing river encompassed by the trees and rock formations of the Wilderness. Inscriptions are “RIVER OF NO RETURN,” “WILDERNESS,” “IDAHO,” “2019,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.”

The obverse (heads) of the 2019 quarters will continue to feature the restored 1932 portrait of George Washington by sculptor John Flanagan. Required obverse inscriptions are “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” “LIBERTY,” “IN GOD WE TRUST,” and “QUARTER DOLLAR.”

Line art of the designs is available here.

2019 will mark the 10th year of the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program, which is authorized by Public Law 110-456—the America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 (Act). The Act directs the Mint to design, mint, and issue quarter-dollar coins emblematic of a national park or other national site in each state, the District of Columbia, and the five U.S. territories. As stipulated by the Act, the Mint is issuing five new quarters per year until 2020. The quarters will be issued in the order in which each honored site was first established. The final coin will be released in 2021.

PNG 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award Presented to Donn Pearlman

Donn Pearlman

(Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) August 13, 2018 – The Professional Numismatists Guild (www.PNGdealers.org) presented its 2018 PNG Lifetime Achievement Award to Donn Pearlman, an award-winning numismatic writer, public relations counselor and a former Chicago radio and television broadcaster. The honor was announced during the PNG’s annual awards banquet held this year in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 13.

President of Donn Pearlman & Associates in Las Vegas, Nevada, he has helped generate positive national and international headlines about the hobby and profession for almost five decades. A collector since the age of eight, Pearlman serves as the PNG’s publicist and is a former member of the American Numismatic Association Board of Governors.

Here are the other 2018 PNG awards and winners announced at the banquet.

The Robert Friedberg Award for an outstanding book or other literature was presented to author Don C. Kelly for Obsolete Paper Money – A Guide With Prices, published by The Paper Money Institute, LLC, Oxford, Ohio, 2018.

The Sol Kaplan Award, which recognizes efforts and contributions in combatting crimes against the numismatic community and is jointly presented by the PNG and the Lewis M. Reagan Foundation, was given to Richard Weaver of Delaware Valley Rare Coin in Broomall, Pennsylvania.

Weaver’s crucial work with the Industry Council for Tangible Assets’ Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force, Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives led to the successful apprehension of a suspect in New Jersey who was allegedly involved in the illegal importation and sale of counterfeit coins and ingots as well as counterfeit certification service holders. It is estimated that if the now confiscated items had been sold to unsuspecting retail customers they would have had a value of more than $48 million.

ICTA Executive Director Kathy McFadden received the Significant Contribution Award. It is given to those who have made exceptional, beneficial efforts over the years on behalf of PNG and the profession and added to the hobby. McFadden is a national leader in seeking fair legislative and regulatory authority in the marketplace as well as in the fight against counterfeits.

Anthony Terranova of New York received the Art Kagin Ambassador Award. This award is named after a former PNG President who provided distinguished service as an advocate of numismatic goodwill.

Charles “Charlie” Browne of New Hampshire, who passed away in May, was posthumously honored with the Abe Kosoff Founders Award. The Kosoff Award is presented to a PNG member-dealer with steadfast dedication to the entire numismatic community and who has made a significant contribution to the Guild or to the numismatic fraternity.

Seven veteran dealers were recognized for 25 years of membership in the PNG: Kathleen Duncan; Richard K. Duncan, Sr.; Michael Fuljenz; Todd Imhof; Dwight Manley; Maurice Rosen; and Glenn Schinke.

The Professional Numismatists Guild is a nonprofit trade association composed of the country’s top rare coin and paper money dealers who must adhere to a strict Code of Ethics in the buying and selling of numismatic merchandise. The organization also has an Accredited Precious Metals Dealer program (http://apmddealers.org).

For additional information, contact Robert Brueggeman, PNG Executive Director, 28441 Rancho California Road, Suite 106, Temecula, CA 92590. Phone: (951) 587-8300. Email: info@PNGdealers.org. Online: www.PNGdealers.org.

Bureau of Engraving and Printing and United States Mint to Participate in the American Numismatic Association’s (ANA) 2018 World’s Fair of Money

WASHINGTON, DC – The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) and the United States Mint (Mint) will share booth #218 at the American Numismatic Association’s (ANA) World’s Fair of Money, August 14–18, 2018, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, PA.

BEP Director Len Olijar and Mint Director David Ryder will participate in the official ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, August 14 at 12:30 p.m. (EDT). Mr. Olijar will sign notes.

BEP is showcasing its Billion Dollar Exhibit featuring more than $1 billion worth of rare antique currency, including sheets of $100,000 currency notes, Treasury Bonds, and Gold and Silver Certificates. A technical expert will also demonstrate currency production on a 19th century Spider Press.

In keeping with BEP’s tradition of creating distinct currency, BEP is especially excited to offer the following new products for sale:

World War I Commemorative $2 Collection – This WWI set features Series 2013 $2 notes from the Federal Reserve Banks of New York and Atlanta with matching serial numbers beginning with 2018 and a commemorative intaglio print of the back of the Series 1918 $2 Federal Reserve Bank Note which features the central vignette of the “Battleship – New York.”

$2 Lucky Panda – Symbolizing peace, harmony, and friendship, this newest addition to the Lucky Money Collection features an uncirculated $2 Federal Reserve note with a serial number beginning with “888.” It is exquisitely designed with decorative Chinese symbolism and packaged in a symbolic, red folder with embossed, gold foil.

World War I 100th Anniversary commemorative collection – “Victory” – This card is the third and final print in the 2018 Intaglio Print Subscription Program which features three cards: Entry, Homefront, and Victory. This collection highlights inspiring allegorical and historical figures featured on Liberty Loans and Victory bonds, engraved American iconography, and currency issued during the War.

BEP will also offer other unique currency-related products, including uncut currency sheets in various subject sizes and denominations. For additional information about BEP or to purchase products, please visit bep.gov and follow us on Twitter and Facebook . You may also order BEP products by telephone (1-800-456-3408), fax (1-888-891-7585), or mail (Bureau of Engraving & Printing, Mail Order Sales, Room 515M, 14th and C Streets SW, Washington, DC, 20228).

The Mint has planned several outreach activities for the Fair. Director Ryder and Director Olijar will host a meet-and-greet and autograph signing at the joint Mint/BEP booth on opening day, Tuesday, August 14, from 1 to 2:30 p.m., followed by a meeting with members of the media at 3–4 p.m. Autograph signing sessions with Director Ryder and Director Olijar also will take place on Wednesday, August 15, from 10:15 to 11:30 a.m. and from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Other activities include:

  • Unveiling designs for the 2019 America the Beautiful Quarters® Program;
  • Hosting a Collector’s Forum, where the public can share their ideas about the nation’s coinage and learn about upcoming Mint initiatives;
  • Providing an assortment of educational resources for educators;
  • Providing children the opportunity to gather information on the Mint’s H.I.P. Pocket Change website to engage in educational activities, learn about Mint programs and operations, and gain an understanding of the link between coins and American history and culture;
  • Providing attendees access to opt-in as a Mint customer to receive product updates and alerts;
  • Conducting a “Treasure Trivia” game in which children visit specific locations on the bourse floor to answer trivia questions designed to instill an appreciation for numismatics;
  • Participating in the World Mints Passport Program, an exciting program in which visitors collect coins from participating mints;
  • Providing the most recently released America the Beautiful Quarters coin for even exchange;
  • Conducting live tweets on the daily activities; and
  • Assisting visitors with downloading its mobile application, MyUSMint.
  • Additionally, the Mint will display three of the nation’s 1933 Double Eagle Gold Coins. The display will feature two of the ten pieces recovered by the government in 2004, as well as the previously undisclosed specimen that was voluntarily and unconditionally given over to the government by a private citizen who requested to remain anonymous.

An assortment of Mint products will be available for purchase over the counter, including the 2018 American Eagle Silver Proof Coin–S mint mark (beginning August 14 at 1 p.m); the new George Washington and John Adams Presidential Silver Medals (beginning August 16 at noon); and product options in the 2018 Breast Cancer Awareness Commemorative Coin Program and the 2018 World War I Commemorative Coin Program. All products are available for purchase via the Mint’s online catalog at catalog.usmint.gov/ or by calling 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). Hearing and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may order by calling 1-888-321-MINT (6468). Additional information is available at catalog.usmint.gov.

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