Civil War Tokens

Civil War Tokens are a popular and exciting field of Exonomia.  Civil War Tokens appeared in the early 1860s due to a shortage of government issued coinage.  First gold and silver vanished, then cents were hoarded. Commerce was suffering, as a result private individuals started striking small copper tokens as substitutes to cents. Eventually the government intervened and Civil War Tokens all but disappeared.

Civil War Tokens can generally be divided into two groups: Patriotic and Store Cards.  Patriotic Tokens display political and patriotic themes with particular emphasis on the Civil War like “The Federal Union – it must and shall be preserved” or “No compromise with traitors” or even abolitionist themes like “No Slavery” … always very collectible.

Store Cards were used by merchants to advertise their business or products.  Typically one die was a standard one, perhaps a patriotic die, or a common die provided by the die manufacturer, and the second die would be customized for the business. These are often collected topically by theme, or by region, with some areas like NYC putting out dozens of tokens and other areas like Whitehall, NY having only one token-issuing store.

Collecting opportunities abound with Civil War Tokens. Please examine my offerings, email with any questions. Enjoy!

Showing 1–12 of 19 results