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MD TAMS Issued Sherlockian Elongated Coin to Celebrate 10th Anniversary in 1989

MD TAMS Issued Sherlockian Elongated Coin to Celebrate 10th Anniversary in 1989

“I was only ten years of age at the time …”

– The Adventure of Black Peter (BLAC)

The Maryland Token and Medal Society (MD TAMS) celebrated its 10th anniversary in 1989 and held their annual meeting in conjunction with the annual Convention of the Maryland State Numismatic Association (MSNA) on June 17, 1989 at Festival Hall in Baltimore. MD TAMS was founded on April 22, 1979 at the MSNA Convention in New Carrollton, Maryland.

The two founders of MD TAMS, Millard W. Hajek and A. Vernon Taylor, started a tradition of issuing a souvenir for the annual meeting starting in 1980, which has continued since then. For the 1989 souvenir, Hajek (the group’s first president and first life member) created a design for an elongated coin that features a Sherlock Holmes-like character. His initials, MH, can be seen below the feet of the character.

OBVERSE: (star) / MD TAMS / SALUTES / TOKENEERS / ON OUR / 10TH YEAR (Sherlock Holmes character, facing left, with a large magnifying glass) / 1979 / 1989

This design was rolled on 50 Jefferson Nickels for distribution to those in attendance at the 1989 Annual Meeting and 250 were rolled on Lincoln Cents for distribution to all members and for sale to the general public.  There are also examples known to have been rolled on dimes and quarters. The coins were rolled by Ray Dillard, the then president of The Elongated Collectors (TEC), from Flint, Michigan.

This elongated coin has many fond memories for your editor. Ye Olde Editor was the Convention Chairman for MSNA that year and was a Director of MD TAMS at this time. Festival Hall (later demolished in 1993) was part of the Baltimore Convention Center, where your editor was gainfully employed for ten years starting in 2000.

In addition, this elongated coin was the impetus to forming The Fourth Garrideb. At the 1994 American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money in Detroit, Michigan, Edward C. Rochette, the 5th Garrideb) asked me for assistance in acquiring one of these. We discussed how he owned several pieces of Sherlockian numismatica and that he wanted to form a club of Sherlockian coin collectors. Twenty years later, I acted upon those discussions. In an ironic twist, I gave my copy of this coin to Ed and I have been looking the last 2 years to find a replacement for my collection.

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