The Michigan State Numismatic Society

Kathy Freeland’s Love Tokens

Love tokens have been a part of collecting history for many people over the years.  Join Kathy as she discusses the history of love tokens, both abroad and here in the United States, how they were (and are) engraved, the coins they used, and what kinds of jewelry were made.  A 15 minute dvd about love tokens will be shown, and a powerpoint presentation will show examples from Kathy’s collection.  She will also be bringing some real love tokens for all to see.  Plan to join us for a look into the past at some fascinating pieces!

Peter Shireman, MD, is a pathologist who practices part-time in Muskegon Michigan.  He has collected coins since he was about 10 years old. He grew up in Kansas City, MO and his grandmother was a collector who got him interested in collecting.  In his early collecting days, he collected what he could afford, helped out by purchases made by his father, from local coin shops, mail order, and occasional coin shows.  His interest grew through the years and he worked at George Fletcher's Coin Shop in Kansas City for many years on Saturdays, until he turned 18 and started college.  Collecting went on hold through his years of college and medical school

Once he finished his pathology training at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, he began collecting again.  It was around 1993 and certification had begun.  His first purchases were higher-end type coins including an 1892 Barber Half in PCGS MS 64.  Within a few years he began a set of certified Barber halves in grades MS 64-65.  His talk will focus on the building of a top-end registry set which he completed in 2015 and sold at auction in January 2016.

Using X-rays to tell just what your coins are made of.

By Mark Benvenuto


Coins today are made with extremely precise metal formulas, and quality control is rigorous.  But throughout history, this has not always been the case.  Analyzing ancient and medieval coins by X-ray – with what is called an energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectrometer (EDXRF) – can tell a great deal about what metals are actually in a coin.  Interestingly, such an instrument can also tell counterfeits in many cases.  This talk will be an easy-to-understand seminar about how XRF can be used to help us learn more about our coins, be they ancient or modern.