The Roanoker - September/October 2016 - 61
HISTORY | THE NICKEL
1913 Libery nickel.
The year 1913 saw U.S.
nickels transition from a
Liberty Head to buffalo
design. However, five
nickels with the Liberty
Head design and 1913
date were illegally minted,
launching them into
from news clippings found in the station wagon. According to the account
that ran in the Roanoke Times, Walton's coin collection "was reported to
have been scattered along the road"
in the crash. Walton's 1913 Liberty
Head Nickel was recovered; it was
near impossible to miss, stored in a
clear plastic case with a label.
However, when Walton's coins were
sent to New York auction house
Stack's Bowers Galleries to be put up
for auction, Stack's experts ruled that
his Liberty Head Nickel was a fake.
Rumor held that Walton often carried a fake version of the nickel for
security, but a search of his collections in bank vaults and storage sites
in Charlotte, North Carolina, Jacksonville, Florida, and Roanoke, Virginia, failed to turn up the authentic
News reports of Walton's death
claimed he lived in Charlotte, but
Roanoke papers claimed him as the
Star City's, and indeed he was buried
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016 | 61