The Michigan State Numismatic Society


What you never knew about the 1804 Dollar and 1913 Nickel by Gary Adkins

The 1804 Draped Bust Dollar and the 1913 Liberty Head nickel, both struck in mystery and intrigue, provide a high stakes look inside the U.S. Mint and the historical aspects of the time period.  This fall, MSNS is exceptionally proud to announce a historic first in the State of Michigan.  Through a cooperative project with our national club, the American Numismatic Association (ANA), and its Edward Rochette Money Museum, we will be hosting a display of two very rare and historic coins, the 1804 Draped Bust silver dollar (15 known to exist)  and the 1913 Liberty Nickel (5 known to exist).  Gary Adkins, ANA Board Member, will speak on the unique circumstances surrounding these two numismatic rarities.  The 1804 dollar was quietly and solely minted for collectors while the striking of the Liberty nickel is still cloaked in mystery and intrigue, a highly illegal combination.  Who could strike five coins and get away with it?  How did they get into the market place if they never were legally minted or were supposed to exist?  Why have they not been confiscated by the Secret Service - other illegal coins have been?  The viewing of these two rarities, valued at over $5 million dollars, is a once in a lifetime experience for most people and certainly a first in the State of Michigan.  This is an event which will not likely be repeated in the foreseeable future.  Attend the lecture hosted by Gary Adkins to learn the history of these truly unique numismatic rarities.

Educational Series:

Speaker #1

Contribute $100 and Make A Difference by Cliff Mishler

 Join Clifford Mishler in exploring what “belonging” means where numismatic organizations are concerned.  Mr. Mishler will explore the benefits of supporting the organized hobby by becoming a member of the ANA, CSNS and MSNS, along with one or two local and specialized groups.  This will be an inter-active talk with the audience.  Explore the knowledge that Mr. Mishler has gained from his vast experience in the world of numismatics through membership organizations.

Clifford Mishler began collecting coins in 1950 and has spent a lifetime deeply engaged in coin collecting community activities and has been involved in numismatics as an author editor, publisher, corporate manager and consultant.  In 1963, Mr. Mishler commenced a 40 year career at Krause Publications as an editor, publisher and corporate manger, culminating with retirement in 2003 following a 12 year tenure in the successive capacities of president and board chairman.  He also served Whitman Publishing in a consulting capacity as a numismatic development director from 2005 – 2011.  

   Mr. Mishler is a 50 year and life member of the American Numismatic Association, where he has served on the board of governors and as President of the organization.  He is also a founding member of the Token and Medal Society, where he served as the editor of its journal and as President.  Mr. Mishler was also a member of the coins and medals advisory panel of the American Revolution Bicentennial Commission (1970-75) and has served as a member of the Annual Assay Commission of the United States Mint (1973), the Wisconsin Commemorative Quarter Council (2001-03) and has testified before Congress on coinage issues on a number of occasions.

For a complete biography of Mr. Mishler’s accomplishments and to find information on his independent consulting service, Eclectic Pursuits of Iola, please go to Mr. Mishler’s web-site at:

Speaker #2

Mint state silver dollars: Drawing the line between collecting and hype by Mark Benvenuto

Collecting silver dollars can be a great deal of fun, but can also involve a significant expense.  What is the best way to collect these large, classic United States coins?  Can you build a collection while on a tight budget?  This talk will outline a number of different ways a person can collect Morgan and silver dollars, and discuss the collecting versus the investing angles.

Mark Benvenuto started collecting US, world, and ancient coins as a child over 40 years ago.  He put the hobby on the back burner while in college, but picked it back up while stationed overseas in the Army, and has never looked back.  He has written over 600 articles on numismatic subjects in national and regional publications, and won several literary awards for his writing.  When not collecting or writing, he is a professor of chemistry at the University of Detroit Mercy.

Speaker #3

Money of the Afterlife by Walter Ostromecki

Attendees will be treated to a fascinating overview of the Chinese history, lore and 'paper money’ collectibles of what are commonly referred to as "Hell Bank Notes." Come learn about everything you wanted to know and more about the colorful, ornate designs depicted on these unusual notes ranging in size from 2 x 3 to 19 x 21 inches. You'll even have the opportunity to meet face to face with the Emperor of Hell and hear about his bank and credit cards. This is a very inexpensive and fun hobby to get involved with for collectors of all ages and income.


Walt Ostromecki is the current president of the American Numismatic Association. and has served on the Board of Governors for nine years.  He's a prolific, researcher, author, speaker, exhibitor and youth hobby mentor of over 40 years. Professionally, he's a retired Los Angeles school district educator-administrator of 38 years. He credits his leadership success to the Boy Scouts, where he achieved his Eagle Scout rank in 1966. 

Walt's been honored nationally with countless numismatic honors and awards. He's a member of 82 hobby related organizations. His current collecting include some of the strangest fun avenues such as Funeral Money, Dumb Coins, Paranormal Coins & Currency, Penguins on Money as well as a historical focus on The Women Behind Our Money and Their Contributions to Numismatics since 1795.


American Numismatic Association Chief Exhibit Judge Joseph Boling will be conducting the ANA Judges Familiarization and Certification Program (JFCP) at the MSNS Fall 2014 Convention. This class is for persons wishing to become a certified ANA exhibits judge. There is no cost to attend, and the general public is also welcome to come and learn about the exhibiting and judging process at this lecture. You do not have to pre-register.  The 90-minute lecture session will be held at the Convention on Friday, November 28 at 11:00 am. Students who wish to become certified will subsequently go on the exhibit floor and judge the displays in the classification(s) of their own choosing the rest of the day and also on Saturday morning. A wrap-up session will be held on Sunday, November 30 at approximately 10:00 am following the awards breakfast. 

      Chief Judge Boling will also hold an "all Judges" meeting at 2:00 pm on Friday, November 28 for all persons judging exhibits at our Fall, 2014 Convention. This is to give out judging assignments and instructions. For more information or questions, please contact Joseph Boling at: