Searching for Prices of Precious Medals

Question: I have five medals and know very little about them. I wonder what they are worth and where and to whom I might sell them for the best price. One gold medal is stamped with Rossland Carnival, 1912, B. C. Championship (British Columbia; won by I. Y. Reddin, an ice skater). I also have two other gold medals, a silver medal and a small round silver medal--each Canadian, with an ice skater on the front and 70 or more years old.--H.H.M.

Answer: Medals are more difficult to price than coins because they're specialized and not as well documented. As a rule, medals are worth 10% to 20% more than their intrinsic value. Your best bet is to sell them to a dealer who handles this sort of material (antique dealers may be of more help than coin dealers) or perhaps make some private contacts through a coin club. I notice that you live in Orange County. You might want to contact the Numismatic Council of Orange County. It meets on the third Monday of the month at 7:30 p.m. at Far West Savings & Loan, 615 East 1st St., Tustin. The mailing address is P. O. Box 10331, Santa Ana, Calif. 92711.

Q: I have a $50 bill, dated 1929, Bank of Italy National Trust & Savings Assn., San Francisco. Could you tell me what it's worth?--M.P.

A: Sorry, your bill has little or no collector value.

Q: I'd like to know the approximate value of a $20 bill I came across. It is a 1981 Series A with the seal on the back instead of the front.--L.T.

A: Your bill is an error, and it does carry a slight premium. Not as much as you might expect, however. You'll just have to shop around for the best offer.

Coin News

Auction '85, conducted by four major dealerships, will be at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago on July 26 and 27. Two thousand lots will be on the block, offered by Rarcoa, Superior, Paramount and Stack's. This is the seventh year this consortium has conducted this sale, and so far more than $50 million worth of rare coins has been moved. Classic U.S. rarities highlight this sale. Catalogues are available from Superior, 9301 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, Calif. 90210-5499.

New 1985 currency bearing the signatures of Treasury Secretary James A. Baker III and U. S. Treasurer Katherine D. Ortega will go on sale beginning July 1. The Bureau of Engraving and Printing will also continue selling Series 1981A currency with the signatures of former Treasury Secretary Donald T. Regan and Treasurer Ortega. The 1985 and 1981A sheets will be available in four-, 16- and 32-subject sizes. By mail, four-subject sheets are $9.50; 16-subject sheets are $28, and 32-subject sheets are $47. Send money orders, bank-type cashier's checks and certified checks to Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Uncut Currency/Souvenir Card Sales Program, 14th and C streets S.W., Washington, D.C. 20228.

Don Alpert cannot answer mail personally but will respond to numismatic questions of general interest in this column. Do not telephone. Write to Your Coins, You section, The Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053.

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