The "Cal-Gold" Reverse Series of California Gold Tokens posted by Cal Gold "Token" Guy

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These "Cal-Gold" reverse design tokens are the bridge between California Gold Tokens and California Denominated Gold pieces...


Howdy Again:

Another series within the California Gold Token world is the "Cal-Gold" reverse tokens, many made by Herman J. Brand of San Francisco. Brand was a major producer of California souvenir gold tokens as well as the better-known denominated pieces.

Brand was one of the manufacturers who was targeted by the Secret Service for his production of token pieces. The Second Edition of the book "California Pioneer Fractional Gold" by Breen, Gillio, Leonard, Jay Roe, and others, has a good description of Brand's encounters with the Secret Service (pages 111-112). It is quite an interesting story, and quite a useful book if you can find one (out-of-print).

These "Cal-Gold" reverse pieces were produced to avoid prosecution under the Private Coinages Act. The denomination was removed and replaced by "Cal-Gold." This theory didn't work and Brand then moved to the Miner pieces which I chatted about in an earlier journal.

One thing is for sure, these pieces cause NGC problems in attribution. I have submitted a number of these to NGC and sometimes they come back not encapsulated with a "back-dated souvenir" designation. I resubmit (once I resubmitted three times) and they all eventually come back graded. In fact, two of them came back attributed and graded as BG denominated pieces!! I left them that way. It was a good way to demonstrate that a number of these "tokens" share an identical obverse with certain denominated pieces (same maker).

These pieces are generally less expensive than the Miner with Pick pieces (there are more of them). They usually cost about the same as the "Arms of California" pieces. They are a visual "bridge" between the "token" clan and the donominated clan. Later. CGTG


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