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The purpose of this token?

Started by brandm24, April 01, 2020, 12:51:22 PM

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brandm24

This is an odd trade token who's purpose is not clear to me. The manufacturer was C.A. Klinkner & Co. of San Francisco who advertises on the  obverse, but the reverse shows a 5 cent value "Good at Bar" No indication of at who's bar or anything else. My thought is that it's either a generic token sold in bulk, later to be counterstamped with a value, or just a sample of Klinkner's work. Maybe a salesman's piece. I came across numerous examples of tokens made by the company and none were like this one. Any thoughts?

C. A. Klinkner & Co. was a mass producer of trade tokens beginning in 1889. Although Charles Klinkner died in 1893 production  continued until 1897 when all assets were bought out by a former employee named L. H. Moise. He re-branded it the Moise, Klinkner Co.and continued manufacturing until 1930 when it was bought out by Patrick & Co. At that time it became the Patrick & Moise-Klinkner Co.

Although it would seem easy to date this piece, that's not the case. After the purchase of the firm from Klinkner's heirs in 1897, Moise continued using Klinkner's old dies and struck many thousands of tokens with them. Theoretically, this token could be dated anywhere from 1893 until 1930. By style though I surmise it dates from the 1890's. This is likely an early issue of the firm.

The attached picture shows Charles Klinkner himself sitting in one of his "air conditioned" delivery wagons.

Bruce
Always Faithful

malj1

I would expect this to be a salesman's sample.  Some of course could be sold as generic tokens to whoever wanted to use them as is. this is done today with the Eagle / no cash value tokens.

See these 3 threads for other samples and makers: a sample plastic token  Salesman's samples  Woollen signs
Malcolm
Have a look at  my tokens and my banknotes.

brandm24

I like sample products, not only tokens. Some are miniature reproductions of larger items. I've seen many while doing research on a counterstamp or other token. They're usually well made and closely resembles the actual product...just a lot smaller.

You've confirmed what I was thinking about the Klinkner piece...sample or generic.

Bruce
Always Faithful

Figleaf

I am wondering about the value side. I can think of two solutions. One I have see in practice: a buffet restaurant where drinks were not included in the price of the buffet. You'd go to the cashier and buy tokens that could be spent at the bar. The other solution is that around 1900 mechanical games popped up in eating and drinking places. The gambling worried certain governments, that moved them to restrict prizes. Hence tokens with "no cash prizes" and the like. It was not unusual that prizes would consist of anything from a pack of chewing gums to a free drink. This reverse could be meant as a prize that would consist of a discount at the bar.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

brandm24

I've seen that too. Gambling was frowned on , so businesses found innovative ways to get around that by offering "gifts." Apparently, it was enough of a distinction to ward off the gambling police. Maybe that's what this token was used for then.

Bruce
Always Faithful

malj1

It does look as though the value was applied later, it probably started life as a valueless sample then was counter-marked with a value for use by someone later.
Malcolm
Have a look at  my tokens and my banknotes.

brandm24

Quote from: malj1 on April 01, 2020, 11:07:01 PM
It does look as though the value was applied later, it probably started life as a valueless sample then was counter-marked with a value for use by someone later.
Agreed, the counterstamp was added later. If the token were generic, then any value could be added to it by the issuer.

Bruce
Always Faithful

brandm24

I thought the value was added later but that doesn't seem to be the case. I looked further into Klinkner tokens and found a lot of salesman's samples in an auction. One in particular was also stamped with a 5 cent value good at the bar. The obverse was just like mine but the value side was slightly different. I suppose all samples would be struck with the same amount just to make things simple. As we suspected, it is a sample token. It's listed in the Kappen reference as K-1335.

The seller, who seemed knowledgeable about California tokens, considered his lot pre-1899. I've attached an image of his tokens plus ones of a Moise-Klinkner token and a catalog c1900-1915.

Bruce
Always Faithful

Figleaf

Great research! More clues: established 1873 and two addresses. Maybe there is a way to find out when the business relocated? Also, Charles and Moïse (Moses) are French names, but the last name is German. There is a chance that the immigration trail will lead to the Alsace region.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

brandm24

I found some personal information on Charles Klinkner but nothing at all on L. H. Moise...don't even know what L.H. stands for.
Klinkner was born in Surbruechen on the Rhine in 1852 and came to the US when a "young man". That's the best I could do for a date. He moved to San Francisco in 1872 and held a variety of jobs before going into the rubber stamp business. Initially, he was employed at a general merchandise and novelty store called Van Schaack & Co., but later was a successful salesman for various companies. The money he made in sales would later fuel the establishment of C.A. Klinkner

Like I say, nothing turned up in regard to Moise's personal life so I don't know where he was born. His business dealings were a bit easier to trace. He was a foreman at C. A. Klinkner & Co. and in 1897, four years after Klinkner's death , bought out his assets and changed the name of the company to Moise, Klinkner Co. In 1930 a competitor named James M. Patrick bought out Moise and combined companies changing the name to Patrick & Moise-Klinkner.

The progression of addresses for MK is as follows. Moved to 417 Market in 1905 and temporarily to 915 Fulton after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake destroyed the building at 417 Market. In 1907 he moved to 1212 Market, the address listed on his catalog.

The 1873 date on the cover was apparently the supposed founding of C. A. Klinkner. We know that's incorrect, but may have been used to give MK a more robust "history". A bit of enterprising merchandising I suppose. I come across that during previous research projects.

Bruce
Always Faithful

Figleaf

Van Schaack is highly likely to be a spelling error. The name Schaack (chess) occurs in the Netherlands - without Van (from), but the name Van Schaick (a town in North Brabant) is common.

I thought Moïse was a first name. Sorry. As a last name, it is originally from Haïti, but it has spread over much of the francophone world and the US. I would expect it to lose the diaeresis (the two dots over the i) in English, but not in French.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

malj1

Quotehe 1873 date on the cover was apparently the supposed founding of C. A. Klinkner. We know that's incorrect, but may have been used to give MK a more robust "history".

I see his date of a arrival in San Francisco is 1872 so once he was employed he could use 1873 as his establishment!

Quotenothing at all on L. H. Moise...don't even know what L.H. stands for.

His full name should appear on the contract of sale when he bought out Klinkner's assets I wonder if there is any trace of this? ???
Malcolm
Have a look at  my tokens and my banknotes.

brandm24

After a little more digging this morning, I found that rascal hiding on the internet.

His full name was Lionel Henry Moise. I couldn't get access to US census data to confirm his date and place of birth, occupation or other family members who may have lived with him. I did discover that he married a woman named Harriet Dixon in 1883 though.

USPO records indicate that he held a number of patents, including two awarded in 1910. One for a hand-stamp holder and the other for an illuminated sign. I found at least three or four more, but have no details on them.

That's about all I have on the slippery little fella. :(

Bruce

Always Faithful

brandm24

Quote from: Figleaf on April 04, 2020, 06:08:05 PM
Van Schaack is highly likely to be a spelling error. The name Schaack (chess) occurs in the Netherlands - without Van (from), but the name Van Schaick (a town in North Brabant) is common.

I thought Moïse was a first name. Sorry. As a last name, it is originally from Haïti, but it has spread over much of the francophone world and the US. I would expect it to lose the diaeresis (the two dots over the i) in English, but not in French.

Peter
I've seen cases of Moise being used as a first name too. Maybe LH was Haitian which is why it would be important to review US census data that generally lists a person's place of birth. Surprisingly. I came across a fair number of people with the surname Moise.
Always Faithful

brandm24

Quote from: malj1 on April 05, 2020, 01:06:34 AM
I see his date of a arrival in San Francisco is 1872 so once he was employed he could use 1873 as his establishment!

His full name should appear on the contract of sale when he bought out Klinkner's assets I wonder if there is any trace of this? ???
I don't recall coming across an example of Klinkner using a founding date while in business as C.A. Klinkner & Co. The catalog cover I posted was from Moise, Klinkner Co. the firm established in 1897 after Moise acquired the assets from Klinkner's family.

I came across a vague reference to Moise having his own business prior to working for Klinkner, but couldn't really confirm it. If such a business existed, it may have been organized in 1873.

Bruce
Always Faithful