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Subject Topic: Hemingway 5 peso with wrong Birthyear Post ReplyPost New Topic
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Shine KW and Me
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Posted: 04 February 2006 at 3:43pm | IP Logged Quote Shine KW and Me

I recently purchased three different 5 Peso Silver Commemorative coins minted by the Cuban Gov't in 1982. They separately depicted the "PILAR", "The Old Man and the Sea" and a likeness of Hemingway.

The coin with Hemingway's likeness on it had an incorrect birthyear of 1998. Cuba issued (1000 Brilliant Uncirculated and 5000 Uncirculated) coins with that mistaken birthyear on the coin. This mistake doesn't make them inordinatley more valuable but definately more conversational at least. (this, the reply from the coin dealer I bought them from, after I questioned him about the value of the error).

Thought it might be of interest.

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RobbieJor
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Posted: 20 February 2006 at 10:43pm | IP Logged Quote RobbieJor

I have a commemorative coin/medal that I bought at an auction before I realized it had an incorrect birth year.   It is struck 1898 - 1961.  It's not valuable - cost me five bucks.

Heads side
"Ernest Hemingway" in full beard and underneath the dates 1898 - 1961.  In the background is an oval writing desk - could be Key West scene and  underneath are the [artist's?] initials "JDL."

Tails side
[Bald?] eagle in flight under the inscription: "Acclaimed as one of America's greatest novelists and noted for his hard, terse literary style.  Ernest Hemingway was awarded the 1954 Nobel Prize for literature for 'The Old Man and the Sea.'"

Don't know how his birth year could be so
blatantly misstated in a commemorative issue.



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Shine KW and Me
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Posted: 21 February 2006 at 10:43am | IP Logged Quote Shine KW and Me

I dunno either RobbieJor, maybe it was the same ingraver or two different engravers from the same gene pool!
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Perdu
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Posted: 12 March 2006 at 3:34pm | IP Logged Quote Perdu

RobbieJor wrote:

I have a commemorative coin/medal that I bought at an auction before I realized it had an incorrect birth year.   It is struck 1898 - 1961.  It's not valuable - cost me five bucks.

Don't know how his birth year could be so
blatantly misstated in a commemorative issue.

Is that one of the 1.2 oz Sterling coins from Longines Symphonette?  The Longines coins were minted in 1972 and had the incorrect (1898) birthdate.  At first I couldn't understand how a company like Longines could have made such a gross mistake.  Then my cynicism took over and I wondered if they'd done it intentionally with the hope that the mistake would make the coins more "collectible" and thereby increase sales.  Who knows?

The mistaken birth year is a persistent error.  It shows up over and over again, seemingly unchallenged.  For example, the VHS documentary Hemingway In Cuba, produced by Silvo Berlusconi Communications, begins with a narrator's voiceover statement saying that Ernest was born in 1898.  Later, as the film continues with scenes filmed at Cojimar, the base of the Hemingway Memorial is shown in closeup and the words "Ernest Hemingway 1898 - 1961" can be clearly read in the weathered stone.

Some sources have stated that Hemingway lied about his age so that he could join the American forces in the First World War (enlistment age was nineteen).  Others posit that he had to lie about his age in order to get his job at the Kansas City Star newspaper.  I have doubts about the validity of those explanations.  The timeline and details of Ernest's life in 1917-18 are authoritatively documented and don't reveal (to me) any necessity for him to have lied about his age to secure either his position at the Star or his enlistment in the Red Cross ambulance service.

Does anyone know, for certain, the origin of the 1898 birthdate?



Edited by Perdu on 12 March 2006 at 11:29pm


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RobbieJor
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Posted: 13 March 2006 at 5:24pm | IP Logged Quote RobbieJor

Perdu wrote:

Is that one of the 1.2 oz Sterling coins from Longines Symphonette?  The Longines coins were minted in 1972 and had the incorrect (1898) birthdate.  At first I couldn't understand how a company like Longines could have made such a gross mistake.  Then my cynicism took over and I wondered if they'd done it intentionally with the hope that the mistake would make the coins more "collectible" and thereby increase sales. 

Thanx for the lead to Longines.  It's a fairly heavy coin and it could be 1.2 oz. Sterling.  It's nicely struck and shows good relief.  I can't believe that intentionally, mistaking his birth year would make the coin more valuable.  Maybe that's why I got it for $5 at eBay auction; it's a mistake and nobody wants it.  I get POed everytime I look at it and think how could an artist making a commerative coin make such a blatant error.

Oh well.



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Perdu
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Posted: 13 March 2006 at 8:01pm | IP Logged Quote Perdu

The Wittnauer Precious Metals Guild Series included the Hemingway coin and A LOT of others.  Many of them come up on eBay regularly and the ones I've noticed usually sell for more than $5.00 .  Although I too have seen the Hemingway coin offered on eBay, it isn't nearly as common as some of the others.  Also, if you do a Web search and check the inventories of dealers who have those Longines coins for sale, you'll be very lucky to find one of the Hemingway coins.  The others in the series are available many places but the Hemingway coins are scarce by comparison.

If the one you have is indeed from the Longines series, I think you got a great deal.  Enjoy it.

(BTW: Check the edge of the coin for markings. If it's one from the Longines series, it will be stamped "Longines Symphonette Sterling" along with some identification number.)



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RobbieJor
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Posted: 14 March 2006 at 11:00am | IP Logged Quote RobbieJor

Perdu wrote:

If the one you have is indeed from the Longines series, I think you got a great deal.  Enjoy it.

(BTW: Check the edge of the coin for markings. If it's one from the Longines series, it will be stamped "Longines Symphonette Sterling" along with some identification number.)

Thanx Donn,

It is a Longines Symphonette Sterling.  Not being familiar with commemorative coins I would never have thought to check the edge. 

Case closed: unless Antiques Road Show thinks it has some value greater than five bucks.

Thanx again,



Edited by RobbieJor on 14 March 2006 at 11:02am


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AtomW
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Posted: 08 June 2006 at 9:05pm | IP Logged Quote AtomW

Any idea how much teh entire 60 coin set of these coins would be worth
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RobbieJor
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Posted: 27 June 2006 at 2:09pm | IP Logged Quote RobbieJor

 

Mystery solved about EH's correct birthday:

The FBI is reporting it as July 21, 1898

http://foia.fbi.gov/foiaindex/ernesthemingway.htm

And they should know, right?  Not!



Edited by RobbieJor on 03 July 2006 at 11:01am


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hijo
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Posted: 27 June 2006 at 11:21pm | IP Logged Quote hijo

Robbie: unfortunately, they also have it as 1899 (which it actually was). Much of EH information in FBI files is from second-hand sources (as in, not him but people who were reporting on him).

Best,
hijo
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