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Gold Pieces Scarce

Territorial gold pieces were coins struck following the California Gold Rush in 1849 by a number of different bullion dealers. Their face values ranged up to $50, which at that time was the equivalent of two and one-half ounces of gold. All are scarce today, and most are valued at more than just their gold content.

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Old Pewter Pieces Were Often Re-Melted

The best old pewter comes from the early years of the 1800s. Unfortunately, early American pewter is difficult to find because most of it was melted down to be re-used. Some of the melt was used to make bullets for war use. The remainder was used to make new pewter pieces. Itinerant peddlers frequently collected old pewter on their rounds to recast into new products such as spoons.

Most American pewter is unmarked. When a mark does exist, it will usually be found on the bottom of a piece or on the inside of hollow ware. A light rubbing with an ink eraser will often bring out faint marks. A marked piece will usually sell for more than an unmarked one, especially if the mark is that of one of the well-known early names, such as Danforth, Boardman, Melville, Will or Bassett.

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Test Your Knowledge Of
Turn-of-the Century Fabrics

Looking for something to do on a cold and wet winter evening? Here’s a paper and pencil game to test your skill. It comes from Games for the Playground, Home School and Gymnasium, written by Jessie Bancroft in 1914.

In the following text, the names of 25 textiles that may be purchased in a dry goods store may be found. None may be repeated. Underline the textiles as you find them.
I’ll give you a hint. The first word is “denim,”and comes from the last three letters of Varden and the first two of the following word, immaculately.

Dolly Varden, immaculately dressed, sat in the window ledge and heard from the church near by the mellow chords of the organ dying slowly away. Her silken hair was well drawn back from her forehead low and broad. Clothed as she was in pink and green, she made one think of spring.

She was considered musical; I considered her brilliant in every way.

I was before the dresser, getting ready to go out, and taking a forkful of cole slaw now and then, or some mock duck.

“I want to send a line north, Henrietta,” said Dolly, bringing ham sandwiches; for she saw I felt hungry.

She then wrote this letter: “I marvel, veterans, if you pause in your good work for lack of cash, merely as is represented. You should canvas for a book or paper, Caleb, some handy volume, possibly a duodecimo. Hairsplitting terms like this I do not often employ, but, blessings on the head of Cadmus! Linguists must sometimes use their hands as well as their wit, weed gardens, if need be, but spare the mullein, for it seems to me like a flower. Always remember that, though the light burns dim, it yet will burn.”

If you give up, the 25 textiles can be found at this link. Remember, this was written in 1914. Don’t go searching for polyester.

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