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Trade Token (US)

 Date: 1861 
 Mint mark: not apparent 
 Size: small 
 Description from requester: Woman looking to the left with Childs Maner Chicago surrounding her. On the back, the picture looks to be a beehive of sorts on a table on water maybe? It also says Jas Lewis and Co Laporte Ind. 
 [Request 705 received from Jada, Tuesday, 23-Jun-2009, answered by Paul] 
 [Reviewed by CoinQuest. Appraisal ok., Sunday, 24-Mar-2013] 

Trade Token (US) | token trade private aluminum nickel commerce co laporte woman ind lewis water beehive table chicago jas tokens toke trading usa It sounds like you are into the world of exonumia, Jada. What you probably have is a token issued by a private company, the James Lewis Company in Laporte, IN. This happened often during the Civil War era. Government money was scarce, so merchants made their own.

I am not familiar with your particular token, however, the picture shows an 1863 trade token issued by an Albany, New York fruit dealer located on 427 Broadway. Tokens like these are fascinating to collect, and they are generally desirable for a certain subculture of coin collectors. If you go on eBay and search for trade tokens, you will find thousands of individual entries. Auction bids range from a few US dollars to well over $100, with most toward the lower end of that range. As always, the older, better preserved specimens bring higher prices.

Other places to look at tokens are and

Sometimes you can learn a lot about your token by poking around the web. Jada asked about James Lewis and Company in LaPorte, IN. Go to Google, type:

token James Lewis LaPorte

and then click the Google 'image' control. If you are lucky, you will find your specific token. This is what I found about Jada's token:

JULIUS BARNKS BEE HIVE This well known house was established in 1855 by James Lewis who was succeeded in 1857 by James Lewis and Company and by the present proprietor in 1865 He has kept the Bee Hive ever since always having a large stock of dry goods and fancy goods at the lowest prices

See, I told you it is a fascinating area of coin collecting!

Tags: token trade private aluminum nickel commerce co laporte woman ind lewis water beehive table chicago jas tokens toke trading usa aluminium nichol nickle nickels nikel nichel alum exind female womans sort etind women ladies behive ladys femal feminine child females hive womens lady princess lsdy empress us sorts children childs


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Sat, 19-Apr-2014 17:03:04 GMT, unknown: 890996 AB0ZaI45gZ5Sg