Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Winter is a good time to Read: Guidebook are Available

Lots of tokens in the mail! Yea Man!
(My wife is rolling her eyes.)
A great guidebook, too!
Winter is time to read. And, every season is a good time to add a few more CTs to the collection.
     There are few collecting pleasures finer than getting a plump package in the mail, marked with UK and Canadian ink, colorful stamps, odd placenames -- all judiciously taped so that industrial scissors are needed to get past the stables, foam, cardboard -- just to get a peek inside.
     It is also a good time to get my Communion Tokens Guidebook if you are still without one. I have been selling them at my cost to produce, package, and mail. Check out ebay to find it. It is inexpensive. New and seasoned collectors will find it enjoyable. Plus you can lend it out as a quick way to introduce your specialty to others.
     If you are from Canada or the UK, you can get the book from this link: Books123.org.
     The books are also available at the big Internet booksellers. There is a UK bookseller -- Waterstones -- that has some listed between 12 & 15 BPs. This is what it would cost me to send at my reduced ebay prices, so it is a good deal -- but check out the link above to compare. I have 30 books left.
     As the education chairperson for my local coin club, I am preparing a powerpoint presentation for this month (next Monday). In talking with folks beforehand, I am pleased by their interest. Few folks know anything about these tokens, but when I describe them, they light up.
     Just wait until they see the collecting field spread out before them: squares, rounds, ovals, octagons, hearts -- not to mention, old dates that are hand-cut in archaic styles.
     So here is another reason to get a guidebook. Give a presentation about the CTs you love and pass around the Guidebook. Lend it out. Or just give one as a gift to someone who likes tokens.
     The book is a welcome mat, a hearty handshake, a conversation about one of the greatest secrets of exonumia. Get one before the weather gets warm and you have to mow the lawn instead of read.


  1. Best of luck with your presentation! After your book, of course, and Burns and Burzinski (if you can find one), what are the must have books for the new or experienced CT collector?

    1. Mike,
      Why not post your powerpoint slides - sure they'd be of interest. Best wishes for the night.

      Scottish series - The main texts on which Cresswell & Burzinski draw are Dick - 'Scottish Communion Tokens Other Than Those of the Established Church' This is not to best of my knowledge available online. The rest of the series is covered by the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland - Brook vol 41(excellent line illustrations); Kerr & Lockie/Lamb vols 75,77,79,81(80/81) & a single unusual token in vol 129. These are all online as is Copinger (English tokens). Milne (Ireland) has recently been reissued as a paperback and is well worth having. I leave it to others to advise on the literature for North America & the rest of the world.
      Apart from the above listings my two recommendations would be a good gazeteer of Scotland and the Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae which gives bibliographial details and helps with identification of unlisted tokens. Both online. If you have any difficulty finding any of above let me know - Mike you might want to post links as permanent feature under 'pages'.
      Trust this is of some use - if you are looking for 'original' hard copy books email me for details of where to look but be advised these are weighty volumes and even surface post is now very expensive.
      I finish with a request to others - there was a concordance of CTs available on disk some years ago - does anyone have a copy for sale?

  2. Hey Bud, I agree with sunnyleith: go and get Brook and Kerr & Lockie/Lamb straightaway. You can find Brook on ebay and Amazon if you want a bound copy. Or you can print it from the Internet as sunnyleith advises. Also, the ANA library has these references, plus Burzinski -- if you are a member, it is free to check out. I am just getting familiar with the Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticannae (thanks to sunnyleith); it promises to be a great resource for identifying ministers and providing some history on them. You have probably seen my last post on maps and travel guides -- they have been a great help and a source of enjoyment. I also have a post coming up on some other "back story" references about the old Kirk in Scotland. For the Canadian CTs, the Charlton Guidebook (2000) is recommended; this reference has photos of every token and a price guide that seems quite accurate -- a reader of this blog has told me that there are some unlisted Canadian tokens that he will be including in an upcoming guide. As for USA CTs, Bason is your only choice -- again, it is available at the ANA library, but I see one for sale on ebay. I will profile some of these guides eventually. As for the CT presentation, I will see if I can get the slides on this site -- some of the photos are ones already posted. I will work on the links in pages -- good idea!!

  3. Thanks guys. I downloaded the Proceedings references yesterday and have bought Brooks and Charlton. I'm not sure I have the pocketbook for U.S. tokens, so I'll wait on Bason. And Burzinski is impossible to find/buy, but I have borrowed it from the ANA. And will again. I love the idea of mapping my tokens and researching the history and contemporary circumstances of the churches that issued them. Looking forward to more posts. Maybe one on how to store/display my collection. I keep my U.S. coins in capsules in a small cabinet made for them, but that won't work, of course, for my tokens. Are the so-called museum quality flips really safe for them?