Alaska Miner One
Alaska Miner 1/2
Alaska Miner 1/4
Alaska Miner tokens are dated 1909 and are denominated as 1/4, 1/2, or One Alaska Gold.
The design features a gold miner on the obverse, with a pick swung over his shoulder.
Between his legs is a shovel and a gold pan.
The reverse displays a wreath, a shield, and a denomination. DWT is an abbreviation for pennyweight.
The tokens were issued by Jules Charbneau at the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, held in Seattle, Washington, in 1909.
The tokens were a commercial success.
Similar to Farran Zerbe's Louisiana and Oregon Gold tokens, the Alaska Miner tokens were struck in 1/4 and 1/2 denominations, but a One denomination was also issued.
First mention of the tokens in The Numismatist was in the May 1909 issue, where they were described by Numismatist publisher Farran Zerbe as "superior to any previous emissions in their class and should have a large sale."
In a January 2013 Numismatist article, Jeff Shevlin and William D. Hyder state that the Alaska Miner tokens were the official souvenir "coin" of the A.Y.P.E., and that jewelry manufacturer Joseph Mayer & Brothers probably struck the tokens for Charbneau.
That firm also struck the official A.Y.P.E. medal (HK-353).
Shevlin and Hyder wrote the book Discover the World of Charbneau So-Called Dollars, which includes a biography of Charbneau, known for his so-called gold dollar tokens (HK-488, etc.) issued at the 1939-1940 Golden Gate International Exposition.
Charbneau secured U.S. Design Patent #39,866 for his Alaska Miner token design.
Charbneau was a guest speaker at the September 27, 1939 meeting of the Pacific Coast Numismatic Society.
The Alaska Miner series was later included in the M.E. Hart's Coins of the Golden West set formed by Farran Zerbe, and sold during (or shortly after) the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition.