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   Trade tokens, "good fors", bingles, scrip, chits, seco, whatever you call them, trade tokens have become a respected collectable, and an expanding branch of numismatics.  The collecting of tokens, is called "exonumia", and includes other types of tokens, including transit tokens, encased cents, and many others.  In a narrow sense, trade tokens are the "good for" tokens, issued by merchants.  Generally they have a merchants name, sometimes a town and state, and also the required "good for 5˘" (or other denomination) legend somewhere on the token.  Types of merchants that issued tokens include general stores, grocers, department stores, meat markets, drug stores, saloons, bars, taverns, barbers, coal mines, lumber mills, and many other businesses.  Trade tokens are often made from aluminum, or brass.  Some are seen in nickel, fiber, celluloid and vulcanite.  The most desirable tokens have the town and state on the token.  Many factors affect value of tokens, including if the town and state are on the token, the rarity, condition and type of business.  Another important factor is the number of tokens known from the town. 

    How can I find trade tokens to collect ?

   A good place to start, is with your friends and family.  Let your friends know you collect trade tokens, and show them one, if they don't know what tokens look like.  Carry a token around in you pocket  for this purpose.  Be sure and ask you family, aunts, uncles, grandparents, for any old tokens they might have.  Other productive places to find tokens, are flea markets, garage sales, antique shops and malls, coin shows, coin shops, second hand stores, junk shops in small towns, metal detector hobbyists, and through trades and mail bid sales in token publications.    

What do tokens look like ?

   Tokens can vary widely in appearance, and there are many fakes, fantasy tokens and other poorly made copies, that are sold to unsuspecting collectors.  Experience is the best guard against these fakes, but even the veteran collectors are taken by them now and then.  Genuine trade tokens have a certain look about them, that you will become familiar with the more you handle them.   Trade tokens discussed here were used generally between about 1867 and current day.  We do not neglect post 1950 trade tokens as many of them are not only genuine trade tokens but quite interesting, affordable and attractive to the eye.   

         This is merchant trade token from San Antonio, Texas.

    In this web site, we will reprint some of the articles that have appeared in various exonumia (token) and numismatic publications including the Tasmanian Numismatic Society Newsletter; "Talkin' Tokens" the monthly magazine of NTCA; the monthly news magazine of the American Israel Numismatic Association: "The Shekel"; the publication of the Numismatists of Wisconsin the N.O.W. News; "Mint Luster" (Oklahoma Numismatic Association); Col. Walter Caldwell’s publication “Token Talk”; the publication of the Texas Numismatic AssociationThe TNA NEWS”;  and "The Stockyard Collector".  In addition there are also several articles that appear here for the first time.  (The values shown for tokens in this website are estimated values, and are for information only, and not intended as an offer to buy or sell.)   In addition Mr. Jerry Adams has done consultant work with authors on western history and provided photographs of tokens in his collection for Texas school books, as well as “Wild West” magazine (April 2008).

Trade Token Tales web-site index:   

page  2 -  Parlor Saloon Token - El Paso, Texas ~ brothel related tokens

page 3 - Lee & Reynolds Tokens - Camp Supply, Indian Territory ~ Indian Traders, Buffalo Hunters

page  4 -  the Rosen Tokens - Ft. Worth, Texas ~ Sam Rosen, Rosen Heights

page 5 -   Alberts Saloon Token - San Antonio, Texas

page 6 - White Elephant Saloon Gunfight 1887- Ft. Worth, Texas ~ BBC tokens  

page  7 - Pickwick Hotel & Delaware Hotel tokens- Ft. Worth, Texas ~ BBC tokens

page 8 -  Menger Hotel Token - San Antonio, Texas

page 9 - P. J. Willis Token from Galveston, Texas ~ Drayage tokens

page 10 - Merchant Trade Tokens, types, uses and background

page 11 - Kleinschmidt Parking Tokens, Ft. Worth, Texas ~ Kleinschmidts Bakery on 7th Street

page 12 - Nat Kramer & the Cattle Exchange Saloon Token

page 13 - Research & Gordon, Texas - N. L. Major Token ~ BBC tokens

page 14 - Vigilant Social Club Tokens

page 15 - Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, a Token connection in 1900

page 16 - Token Illustration Techniques

page 17 - Hachita,  New Mexico military  post  exchange  Tokens


page 18 - Flame Room Tokens from San Antonio

page 19 - Doans, Texas & the Cowboy Saloon Token

page 20 - The Red Light Saloon Token - Ft. Worth

 page 21 - Thurber, Texas - Ghost Town Tokens !!! ~ Coal Mining tokens, explosive control tokens       

page 22 -under construction...         

page 23 - Camp Bowie 1917-1918 Texas

page 24 - Tokens and  the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 


 page 25 - Trade Token Values and Prices - A Personal Perspective 

 page 26-William B. Travis- Hero of the Alamo illustrated on a Texas token  

page 27-A. E. Reynolds, the other half of Lee & Reynolds, Indian Traders

page 28-The White House shown on Trade Token of A.B. Miller  

page 29-Tokens from a 1930's Utopia ! ~~ Kristenstad, Texas  

page 30-Leonard Bros. Dept. Store Tokens ! Fort Worth Texas grocer tokens of the Depression

page 31- Panzer Kantine Token of Nazi Germany ~ military tokens of Germany in World War Two~Armor & Tanks 

page 32-The James Boys-Bartenders of old Fort Worth, Texas ~ gunfights and bar-rooms

page 33-Tokens & Streetcars-the Texas Spring Palace of 1889 ~ Fort Worth, Texas tourist attraction of the day  

page 34 -Tokens from the Ghost Town at the Bottom of the Lake ~Ingle tokens

page 35-Bird's Fort to Birdville Bus Company ~ transit tokens

page 36-Tokens & Major Carswell ~ Carswell Air Force Base, Texas 

page 37- B. Max Mehl-tokens ~ Fort Worth Texas coin dealer

page 38-Pearl Harbor - tokens & History

page 39 - Theatre Comique Saloon tokens- Rowdy Joe Lowe & J T Leer -1877

page 40 - Curtis Publishing Company token- Norman Rockwell an American Artist

page 41- Texas Token collectors meeting-March 2000

page 42 - W.A. Miller -Barber token from 1890's Wise County Texas

page 43 - Token from Electra, Texas - Electra Waggoner- W.T. Waggoner & Dan Waggoner

page 44  - Tombstone Tokens & the O.K. Corral gunfight ~ Tombstone Arizona

page 45 -under construction

page 46 -How did Ft. Worth become Panther City on Tokens & medals?

page 47-R.E. Wallace ...or ...How I Started Token Collecting......

page 48 -R.H. Knox grocer & merchant trade tokens-& History of Keller, Texas ~ Ingle tokens

page 49 -Judge Roy Bean - Law West of the Pecos & related tokens 

page 50 - Sam Bass the train robber, Lorena, Texas and the gold coin ! (no tokens)

page 51 - Chinese- American trade tokens and the California connection

page 52  - Trade Tokens of Durfee & Peck, Indian Traders at Ft. Union, Dakota Territory & Ft. Buford, Dakota Territory

  page 53  C. N. Cotton-Indian Trader...  Tokens, Seco...Gallup, New Mexico  

page 54 -Baker's Transfer Tokens ~depotel tokens ~ Weatherford, Texas

page 55 - Peddler to Tycoon- the Story of Leon Blum, Galveston, Texas merchant-Drayage token

page 56 - FANTASY & FAKE TOKENS !!!!

page 57-J. K. Moore, Post Trader, Camp Brown

page 58 - Presidential Series Medals of the U.S. Mint.......and Indian Peace Medals, and Inaugural Medals,  3 inch diameter, 76 millimeter size 

 Membership application to join the best token collector club in the world, NTCA!   National Token Collectors Association club

Or if you would like to join NTCA, you may email me and I will send you a membership application in the next day's mail.  my email address is at the bottom of this page.... 

 Membership application to join the best token collector club in the world, NTCA!    

   pointer3.gif (352 bytes) Click here for links to related sites        

Who becomes a token collector ?

Many metal detector users, coin collectors, historians, bottle diggers, contractors, police officers, teachers and others become token collectors.  Some people collect tokens as related to their vocation, as the bus driver who collects transit tokens from different cities.  Many coin collectors become token collectors, as they become more interested in the history of a certain area, or type of business.  Token collecting combines the aesthetic appreciations of a coin collector with the study of the past that interests historians.   




webmaster and author is:   Mr. Jerry Adams of Fort Worth, Texas, USA (really Keller, Texas, but no one knows where that is)

member #105  National Token Collectors Association (NTCA) - USA

member #R-3142968   American Numismatic Association  (ANA)  - USA

member #363  Tasmanian Numismatic Society (TNS)- Tasmania, Australia

member #448  Worldwide Bi-Metallic Collectors Club (WBCC) - World Wide web based

member #R-6551  Texas Numismatic Association, Inc. (TNA) - USA

member #11030  American Israel Numismatic Association, Inc. (AINA)  - USA

member     Numismatic Literary Guild (NLG)  - USA

member     The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)  - USA

member # 334  Encased Collectors International (Knowledge thru Fellowship) - USA

member #R-9380  Central States Numismatic Society (CSNS)  - USA

member #1984  Numismatists of Wisconsin (NOW) - USA

member # 489  International Society of Animal License Collectors (ISALC)  - USA

member # 228   Southeastern Token Society (SETS)  - USA

member   Pennsylvania Area Token Collectors Organization (PATCO)  - USA

member   (CARTS)  Carolina Area Token Society USA

member  The Civil War Token Society  - USA





email requests for permission for reprints may be sent to      be sure include word TOKEN in header.. and please include your name, where you are located in the world (state if in the USA), and if you have a question about a token you found, you should let me know at least where it was found, the state for instance.  I am not coming to dig tokens at your secret spot, but I can't identify a token if I don't have a clue where it was found.


Free appraisals of tokens are NOT my business.  However I am generally agreeable to give brief answers to token questions.  Thanks!!


For ebay sniping, the sniping service I use for many years without problem is: 

Auction Sniper



updated: 6 august 2008 





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