ONE OF THE GREATEST JOYS a collector of tax tokens gets is the day in which the quarterly A.T.T.S. newsletter arrives in the mail. This may sound like mere pandering to the non-member, but I assure you that it isn’t. The A.T.T.S. newsletter is produced by a dedicated group of collectors who are committed to sharing their knowledge on the subject as well as promoting and preserving the hobby.

OUR EXEMPLARY NEWSLETTER is in full color and contains a wide array of historical articles with a seasoned blend of personal ones. There are frequently photos and discussions regarding new discoveries as well as informational articles. There is a regular feature documenting the price trends on eBay for our hobby, which help our members make informed decisions when purchasing new pieces or selling duplicates. There is a free section for classifieds and… well, I could go on, but why not just take a look? Here are a couple of recent issues for your enjoyment.



SO WHAT DO YOU THINK? Now that you’ve taken the time to read some newsletters and explore this site, I’m sure you’re becoming interested in this hobby, right? Why not click on the “Join” tab above and consider becoming a member?

2 thoughts on “Newsletter

  1. Monte

    The majority of counterstamps found on Missouri blank-backed “milk tops” have been verified and reported, often many decades ago. Information on when and who reported most of these can be found in the section marked Additional Details. Up until recently (the last 5-7 years) these counterstamps languished in the $25-$60 range, except on occasion for a unique piece. Given those facts, I’ve never seen or heard of a report of any C/s ever having been doubtful as far as authenticity. Too, the business counterstamps, which are the most prevalent, can almost all be traced to a when and a where that would eliminate the veracity of something that is reported new but does not match those historic records, which are easy to check.

    Now that more collectors in more fields have focused their attention on obtaining a small collection of these counterstamps, it is possible that the problem you suggest might occur, although it has not yet. However, having watched auction lots on eBay for some 17 years, not only in the sales tax token category, but in dozens of associated categories, and even specialty categories, such as REAL milkcaps from Missouri, which might rarely have a C/s, the problem you suggest has not shown itself. Should a seller begin advertising groups, as you mention, with a “goodie” included in the pile, it would only take a few of those for some doubt to develop. It is simply a fact that in any given year their has never been more than 8 C/s listed on eBay, to include those relatively common (R5 and R6). An examination of an uncertain C/s could be verified in a number of ways, most from simple examination of the type and color of the ink used, consistency of the stamp, edge delineation of the stamp (old time, pre 1950’s stamps usually are raised on the pressure detail at the center for a more even ink impression), and type of script employed. If you examine the majority of the C/s you will see that the number of font types is relatively small.

    Taking an example or a picture of a previously used stamp somewhere to have one made would involve a number of steps that might not even be possible. Does the type of font used on the original even exist for the new stamp type? Possibly not. Can a replica of the font be made? Maybe. Can you reproduce the predominant purple ink color so often found? With a heck of a lot of work and trial, I would guess. How much does such a stamp cost? I don’t know, but I’d guess a custom stamp would have to cost a good $40 or so. Then getting the ink right. Then getting the tokens. Then stamping them so that they were like those previously used before. What are the chances that all of that could be done to duplicate a previously used stamp? Assuming someone wanted to be dishonest enough to try such a charade, I don’t think it would end up being terribly profitable, even if they sold 10 of these counterfeit counterstamped pieces.

    In almost all instances of trickery in ANY collectible field the likelihood of such occurring is always dictated by the potential for false profit. In this instance, it remains a possibility to be aware of, but has not made entrance into this field thus far. Given that the vast majority of the collectors in these fields have a high propensity for honesty and a sincere love of history it likewise reduces the potential for such devious shenanigans.

  2. John P

    WOW! Missouri Counterstamped “Milk Cap” Tokens in the Summer 2013 is a great article.

    I do have one questions that you did not seem to address. What about counterfeit pieces? Seems that this would be a prime target for counterfeiters. As you said in your article, uncirculated, near perfect, unstamped tokens are readily available for $2. Make a rubber stamp copying some of the images in your article or M&D. Sell them on ebay in mixed lots with the counterfeit counterstamp visible in the photo and at prices that seem high for a mixed lot but tempt the collector…..

    But then again I may have spent too much time listening to the military paper currency collectors. Seems like at least half of the paper currency that is counterstamped and available on ebay turns out to be counterfeit on close examination, i.e. when you have bought it and have it in our hand.

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