Tag Archives: trade token

Good In Trade

9 Jan

I just love trade tokens! I went looking for silver at lunch time with Maurice –my Deus metal detector, and I found a trade token instead.



I thought I had a shield nickel for a split second. My heart did a flip but then my subconscious took over and brought me back to reality. Rubbing off some of the dirt revealed the words around the edge.





The obverse has the words Good For 5¢ In Trade and the reverse has the number 3413 and nothing else.

The token also has a small hole in the middle. The hole seems to be part of the token’s original design as it blends very well with the token unlike holes bored after the production of the piece. The hole is a curious thing though as it cuts through the middle of some of the characters. I wonder what the function of it is. I also wonder what the number on the reverse means. How did the token system worked? Who issued tokens like this with no identifying information? When was this token issued?

I found this token where I found the Walking Liberty in the last days of 2012. I have found several old tokens there including other trade tokens of a different design. I know other hunters have found trade tokens here as well which leads me to believe that there may have been a store at the site in the past.

At any rate, after finding this and other tokens, me thinks more silver coins are hiding at this spot.

Thank you for looking!


The first Barber of 2012

15 Oct

Phew! I thought I was going to go all through 2012 without finding a Barber coin. Luckily, the XP Deus metal detector is a monster in iron. I returned for an hour to the 100 year old school that I hunted yesterday and was able to pull a trade token and an 1897 Barber quarter.

The token is about the size of a U.S. nickel and thanks to Steveouke, I know that it was made by a company called Mills between 1913 and 1932. The token was used in slot machines that were designed to prove that the machines themselves were not gambling machines!  They did this by telling the gambler (gamer?) how many coins he or she would win on the next spin. If the number shown was zero, then you would put your coin in anyway because the next number  shown could be something other than zero. The machines also dispensed gum for your coin, thus making the machine a combination of vending and gambling machine. Interesting to say the least.

trade token and Barber quarter

Not a bad haul

The Barber quarter gave a dime signal. I wonder if the reason for that is that the quarter is very worn. The coin was about 5 inches deep.

Although the spot where I found these two (and the 1881 Indian Head and 1920 Merc yesterday) is iron infested, the Deus was able to pick up their signal nice and clear. I think I will hit it one more time before I move on to my other spot where I think I will find silver.

Thank you for looking!

A token kind of day

19 Jul

I spent two hours very early this morning metal detecting with the XP Deus metal detector. I returned to the site where I found my very first ever trade token and I found two more of the same except the number in the back was different. Then I found two additional but different tokens and a numbered lead seal.

This leads me to believe that this may have been the site of a store at some time in the past. I found no coins though, at least not yet.

various old tokens

A fistful of tokens

Trade token

The numbers on the reverse are different

Trade token obverse

This one is in much better shape than the last one

The two other tokens are in poor shape. I have seen the Palmolive token many times before so I know what it is for (a cake of soap). The Ranch El Campo token is a different story. I’ve never seen one before.

I found other things at the site including a copper spoon that I broke while extracting it from the hard, dry ground and a number of house parts made of brass and copper.

I still have hopes of finding coins there but I may wait for more rain (we got some rain today but not nearly enough).

Thank you for looking!