Coin and Paper Money Collecting/JFK/RFK token?

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Question
Mr. Fern can you identify this coin?  I have a coin with the profile of Robert F. Kennedy over John F. Kenney.  The profiles face left. Around the outside of the profiles their names (John F. Kennedy - Robert F. Kennedy) are in raised letters (all capitals).  Around the edge of the coin are raised pinpoint dots.  The coin is approx 1 1/2" diameter and 1/8" thick.  It is silver in color (don't know if it is actually silver).  On the reverse side is the American Eagle (front view) facing left.  In it's beak it has a ribbon with e pluibus unum.  The breast of the eagle is covered with a banner.  The eagle clutches an olive branch in the left claw and arrows in the right claw.  Above the eagle's head is a circle of raised pin head sized dots with 50 stamped stars in it.  I do not have the capability of sending in a photo at this time.  Thanks, Michael

Answer
It's always best to provide as much information on the item you have when asking a question. A photo of your piece would also help. Things like size, diameter, thickness, metal content would all help pinpoint what you may have. I'll try to do my best, but if you want to provide added information or a photo, I'll revise my answer, if required.

I'm not specifically familiar with your piece. With the information you provided, you likely have a token or medal. There were many tokens issued both by the US mint and private mints after the passing of Robert Kennedy. Many were issued after 1968 and into the 1970's. The metals of choice were likely brass or bronze, possibly silver, and less likely gold. From Wikipedia: "Chronologically, in the United States many Exonumia items were used as currency when actual money was not easily available in the economy. A notable exception to this definition are Medals, which were generally not used as currency or exchange. See the 'for clarification' section below for distinctions between various branches of exonumia. Tokens were used both to advertise and to facilitate commerce."

For more of a description of exonumia, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exonumia

In today's market, with silver over $30 a troy ounce, and gold closing in on $1700, the metal content is critical in establishing the value of your item. Most brass or bronze tokens would likely retail in the $3 to $5 range, while medals, usually around the size of a half dollar to dollar or larger, would retail in the $15 to $25. Silver medals would likely bring $30 to $50 and gold ones, depending on the purity and size, would bring hundreds of dollars.

For examples, see: http://www.legacyamericana.com/servlet/the-Tokens-and-Medals/Categories

You may want to check eBay listings under US coins be specifically looking for political medals or tokens in the exonumia category to see if items like yours are listed and what they are going for.

Hope this helps. Please remember to go to the experts site to rate this answer. Check the nomination box on the rating page below any comments you may have.

Thank You and Good Luck in your collecting.  

Coin and Paper Money Collecting

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Ronald Fern

Expertise

I can answer most all questions relating to US coins, tokens, and currency. I'm not strong on world coins or ancients. Primary field of expertise is errors and varieties. Over 55 years experience in coin collecting. Part time dealer since 1976. Employed by McDonnell Douglas/Boeing for over 34 years as an Industrial Engineer/Technical Specialist before retiring in 2002.

Experience

Worked weekends for "Lonesome" John in the late 1960's to mid 1970's processing error coins, packaging, and preparing orders. Worked with John Devine and Fred Weinberg on several California Error A Rama's in the early 1970's. Served as display judge at annual Error-A-Rama coin shows. Opened and operated mail order coin business DBA "CAL ERRORS" in 1976. Contributor to Alan Herbert's "Official Price Guide To Mint Errors" and Fivaz/Stanton "Cherrypickers' Guide". Worked Saturdays at Huntington Beach Coin Exchange 1980-1999. Had table and sold coins at a number of coin and gun shows in So CA, AZ and NV. Sell coins, tokens and currency on Facebook. Past "Errorscope" Editor. Presently CONECA Examiner.

Organizations
ANA, CONECA, CWTS, NLG

Publications
Errorscope, Numismatic News, Civil War Token Journal, Error and Variety News

Education/Credentials
AA Degree LBCC pre Engineering, 1964 BS Degree CSULB Ind Technology, 1968

Awards and Honors
1st Place EAR Trophy for Civil War Token Errors, NLG Author of Year Award for best monthly coin column "Error News and Views" in small Numismatic paper, owned and published by Ray Anthony.

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