~ NOTE ~
(The map printed in the latest NOW News is in error)
The 58th Annual Spring Coin
Show of the Fox Valley Coin Club
will take place on
Sunday, March 24
The Darboy Club
N9695 County Rd, N
(Corner of County N and County KK in Darboy)
Admission to the show is free!!
November 24, 2012 was a sad day for Numismatists of Wisconsin when we lost a dedicated, long-time member of our organization.
Gene Johnson, age 84, a life-time resident of Wisconsin Rapids, died in Palm Springs, California. Earlier that week, he had left from their winter home in Palm Springs to do what he loved doing… going to a ?ea market searching for tokens.
A founding member of Numismatists of Wisconsin Gene became NOW member #41 on July 8, 1960. He served in all the elective officces of our organization, and he and his wife, Irene, edited NOW News for many years.
Gene’s numismatic expertise was tokens and the stories behind those little pieces of history. He was an avid collector of “data”, and he compiled and generated the 25th and 40th NOW Anniversary booklets.
At NOW’s 50th anniversary held in Iola on May 21, 2010, Gene and ?ve other living Charter members were honored with a 5-medal set of silver NOW Medals from the events held in Iola. In 2000 Gene became NOW’s Historian, archiving all the historical records of our organization.
A nationally known historian and numismatic writer, in 1967 he published the ?rst state trade token book, “Trade Tokens of Wisconsin,” a pioneer cataloging effort that led to listings that now encompass token catalogs from 32 states nationally. Frequently honored for his writings, Johnson received the Fare Box Literary award in 1966 and 1977, the Seigel Literary Award in 1979, the Numismatic Ambassador’s Award in 1980 and in 1995 was honored by the Literary Guild for the best numismatic article published in the United States.
Gene was born March 5, 1928, the 4th son of John & Tena Johnson. On July 28, 1951 he married Irene Bautz and was employed at the Biron Division of Consolidated Papers. He worked 43 years in the Quality Control Department until his retirement in 1990.
Drafted into the army in 1950, Gene served as a combat mortar man in Korea. He was a life member of the VFW, DAV and Korean War Veterans Association, was active in the Red Dragons of the 2nd Chemical Mortar Battalion and the 330th FABn veterans association.
Gene was active in his home community, serving on the Wisconsin Rapids District School Board from 1967 to 1971 and served on the board of the Camp Five Museum from 1977 to 1988.
A memorial service was held December 8th in Wisconsin Rapids. Military rites were rendered by VFW Post #2534.
Survivors include his wife, Irene, daughter Susan Johnson of Slinger, WI; a son, Greg (Pamela) Johnson of Wisconsin Rapids, 3 grandchildren, Heather Wachsmuth of Plover, William and Jon Cleveland of Colgate and two great-granddaughters, Skyler and Peyton Wachsmuth.
Gene will be greatly missed – His dedication and support to NOW was obvious. He was my reliable backup… whenever I needed information on a token or a picture, a story for the News or an obituary, I could always rely on Gene’s help.
“Pennies from heaven??"
-- he’s probably collecting “tokens from
heaven” if I know Gene.
In The News
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