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THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Sunday, February 24. 1957
Sunday, February 24, 1957
THE MICHIGAN DAILY
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I Live in a Dorm
THE ART OF COIN
An Intimate, Eye-Witness Account of Mass Living
By VERNON NAHRGANG doesn't stop at the sixth or eighth
Daily staff Writer floors, either, but residents know
LIVE in a dorm. their way around and visitors learn
It's a tall, red brick-and-glass quickly.
structure stretching its six arms Tuic .a.
across a hill from Madison to
Monroe Streets (another way of
saying Fourth and Fifth Streets,
if you know your presidents).
Because the building is on a hill,
there are seven floors at one end
and ten at the other. The roof is
I live on the fourth floor in the
end of the building where it is the
third floor, or second floor if you
call the street level the gt ound
floor, which it is not because the
ground floor is below it.
If I lived on the fourth floor in
the other end of the dorm, it would
be the sixth floor,
But this is never confusing be-
cause dorm residents know their
way around and visitors use the
Of course, you can't get to the
fourth floor on an elevator. It
y!ialways use Lne stairs-.
AS FOR my room, it has a desk,
a chair, a lounge chair, a shelf,
a closet, a medicine cabinet, a
telephone, a washbowl (this costs
extra), a bed, four walls, a window,
drapes, and the prescribed number
of cubic feet of air.
The room also has a maid who
comes at 9 a.m. every Tuesday.
That's because I get up at 9:30
If I get up at 8:30 a.m., she
would come patting on the door
at 8 a.m.
She always pats the door softly
and unlocks it quietly because she's
See Picture on Page 1"
afraid she might wake me up or
disturb me if she knocked. But l
she leaves right away if I'm indis-
Then I hear her pushing her
cart down the hall, stopping to
pat the other doors. The cart has
square wheels so it can be heard
from a good distance.
When she does get into the
room, she makes the dust fly.
When she leaves, the dust settles.
She cleans the washbowl and
washes the mirror on the medicine
cabinet. She even folds the towels
neatly on their rack so they look
clean and new and I never have to
If you don't believe she cleans
well, ask her. She'll tell you. At
THREE days after the maid
makes her rounds the house
mother makes hers-to see that
the room stays clean.
By title she is the associate ad-
visor, but she doesn't fool anyone.
There's also a resident adviser,
an assistant resident adviser, and
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six little staff assistants. Each
house (seven to the dorm) has its
The staff people work hard all
year long enforcing rules, keeping
order and counselling residents,
then, near the end of the year they
pass out "staff evaluation" forms
asking for the resident's idea of
what the staff's job is.
The housemother is aristocratic
and, at all times, proper. After
many years of living near male
students she knows when not to be
outside her room and how to keep
her eyes dead ahead.
She encourages the presence of
women, but in the lounge and not
the men's rooms.
THE resident adviser is aristo-
cratic and, at alltimes, proper.
He is also an artist, and his back
room that no one ever sees is really
He encourages the presence of
women, even in the men's rooms,
as long as he can come along, too.
OFTEN the inescapable feeling
of dorm residents is that the
other members of the staff are
But they have to be able to get
along with the 200-odd house
residents who are invariably 200
One of the stand-out residents
-because he doesn't stay around
long-is the fraternity fellow,
eager to rid himself of the stigma
of living in a dorm as soon as he
Quite often he is a very decent
chap, but just when you get to
know him, he runs off to join the
brothers at ATO, becomes an of-
ficer of the IFC, wins a seat on
SGC-and never looks back.
His leaving produces two di-
vergent groups of dorm residents,
those who know why they con-
tinue to live, there and those who
THREE TIMES daily, twice for
most, these residents converge
on that recent world scene, the
Waiting in line for meals, the
residents watch the dorm business
manager watching them.
He started a dinner-hour patrol
for some reason last December
and shows no indication of giving
In the food line students join
in the "time-honored tradition of
griping about the food," knowing
full well it is prepared attractively
and economically three times daily
in the spotless kitchens of the
But the food really isn't bad.
No one could possibly like every-
thing there is to eat, anyway.
And after the meal one can al-
ways retire to the house lounge
for an invigorating round of bridge
or a glance at the latest magazines
Therein lies another type-the
HE HAS so much free time he
sits for hours trying to think
of ways to use it. He is adept in
Near him there's always a fra-
ternity pledge who hasn't yet got-
ten his release from the dorm.
This is the fellow who contin-
ually asks, "You're not going to
live here for four years, are you?"
with one eyebrow raised as if he
suspected you of being an atheist
or a sex pervert.
This question, of course, is
laughed off at once.
There is no reasoning with some
But at the same time there is
the house government, a group of
students serious about dorm life
and convinced everyone else is
just as eager.
This group organizes the house
and maintains an order of sorts.
It tries to build "house spirit" and
set up social and athletic activi-
ties, which a few members seem
But no matter how far house
government or activities go, they
never please anyone except the
officers or committee chairmen
who work them out.
Anyway, there are two different
groups, the residents who guide
the house and the residents who
scheme to leave as soon as they
Both extremes are similar be-
cause each knows where it is go-
All the rest of the students, who
fit in between the extremes, just
BESIDES, all dorm dwellers like
to get back to the sanctuary
of their rooms whether they ad-
mit it or not.
The rooms are even more at-
tractive now that the dirty white
plaster walls are being patched
and transformed into clear color-
ed walls-different colors, too.
Then there's always the maid,
who comes patting on the door
once weekly, and the house mother
who comes along a few days later.
The people are interesting, and
you never get bored seeing the
same ones every year.
It's not so bad. Really.
By WILLIAM HANEY
Daily Staff Writer
NUMISMATICs-or coin collect-
ing is celebrating its centen-
nial birthday in the United States
this year. In 1857, when the large-
sized cent was discontinued, many
persons not formerly interested in
coins except for their purchasing
power attempted to accumulate
a complete set of the pieces as a
hobby while they were still in cir-
culation. Since then American
coin - collectors have increased
Only the very wealthy can af-
fdrd a collection containing a coin
from each year's mint since the
striking of the first American coin,
the half-dime (disme), at Phila-
delphia in 1792. But the well-to-do
collector seldom gets more enjoy-
ment from his hobby, though he
can purchase rarer varieties than
the amateur who buys rolls of
pennies and nickels from the bank
or corner drug store, searching
for the many rare coins passing
through the hands of people un-
aware they may be putting a
nickel or dime worth several hund-
red dollars in a candy machine or
DETERMINING value of a coin
requires familiarity with only
a few basic principles and numis-
matic terms. Age is probably the
most unreliable way to judge the
worth of coins. A one-hundred-
year-old silver dollar may be worth
only one dollar if it does not sat-
isfy other requirements necessary
for a coin to be considered a rare
Condition is one of the most im-
portant factors in determining
the value of a coin as a "collect-
or's item." The most perfect classi-
fication of a coin is "proof"; these
are coins that have been struck
from polished dies leaving a sur-
face almost mirrorlike and un-
touched by human hands. Phila-
delphia is the only United States
mint striking proof coins that are
sold at the premium to the public
through the mail.
Uncirculated specimens of the
earliest American coins' are found
in many European collections
which have been retained through
intervening years. Uncirculated
pieces of almost every American
coin have been preserved through
generations because they have
been tucked away in attics, vaults
GRAING OF COINS goes from
classifications of "extra fine"
to "poor," entirely depending upon
whether the specimen has surviv-
ed circulation. A "poor" coin, one
very worn or mutilated, is worth
only "face value" unless it is of
a type of which few have been
Quantity minting is the next
most dependable criteria for the
economic value of a coin. Because
over one million half-cents were
minted in 1804 that coin is worth
only two or three dollars, even in'
"fine" condition. But when only
18 half-cents were struck 48 years
later, that particular variety be-
came one of the rarest American
coins and each specimen is worth
several hundred dollars in any
condition. Judging the worth of
a coin solely by the quantity mint-
ed can be very misleading, how-
ever, and a few freaks of Ameri-
can domestic policy have produc-
ed some outstanding rarities in
the numismatic society.
Under the Pittman Act of April,
1918, 270,232,722 silver dollars
were melted down; 259,121,554
were exported to India and 11,-
111,168 melted and divided into
domestic subsidiary coins. Since
most of the dollars in circulation
at that time were 1903 yarieties
minted at New Orleans and San
Francisco, both specimens became
quite rare though almost six mil-
lion were struck.
COIN VALUE in many cases can
be directly correlated with the
size and importance of the mint
where the piece was struck. Be-
cause Philadelphia is the oldest
and largest American mint and
struck far more coins than other
mints, proportionally fewer rari-
ties have come from Philadelphia.
On the other hand, Charlotte,
North Carolina, and Carson City,j
Nevada, coins are almost always
in great demand because the mints
lasted only a few years and struck
comparatively few coins during
Besides the obvious classifica-
tions a coin falls under by con-
dition and denomination, it is
even further distinguished by its
"mint mark," an initial or two of
the mint that struck the coin.
Coins struck at Philadelphia (with
the exceptions of 1942 to 1945
five-cent pieces) do not bear a
mint mark. Branch mints how-
ever, carry the following initials:
"S," San Francisco, in operation
since 1854; "D," Denver, minting
since 1906; "CC", Carson City,
1870 to 1893; "D," Dahlonega,
Georgia, gold coins only, from
1838 to 1861; "O," New Orleans,
1838 to 1861; "C," Charlotte, 1838
Mint marks on the Lincoln head
cent are located under the date
on the obverse, "heads" side of
the coins; on the Buffalo nickel
the mark is under the "five cents"
beneath the Buffalo on the re-
verse, "tails" side; on the Mercury
dime the mark is on the reverse
side to the left of the fasces, the
staff in the middle of the coin.
The beginning collector should be
careful to locate the mint mark
before he tries to evaluate the
worth of the specimen.
,y to-be in soft, rosy tone
you can sel
in a serene atmosp
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1107 SOUTH UNIVERSITY
THERE ARE also other distin-
guishing marks; initials of
the designer, imperfect specimens
produced by faulty or aging dies,
and overstrikes that make other-
wise common varities rare. For-
geries of these unusual specimens
are quite commonplace and in
some cases almost impossible to
distinguish from the legal pieces.
Probably the most familiar pe-
culiarity is the 1909-S-VDB. The
"S" of course is the mint mark,
but two varieties of "S" coins were
struck at San Francisco in 1909,
one bearing the initials of Victor
D. Brenner, the designer of the
Lincoln head cent, the other with-
out the initials. A magnifying
glass is sometimes necessary to
locate the "VDB" on the bottom
of the reverse side of the coin,
and such specimens in even "poor"
condition are valuable to collect-
ors or coin dealers.
In 1864, when the bronze In-
dian head cent was introduced,
some pennies carried the initial
"L" of the designer Longacre, on
the headdress ribbon of Sarah
Longacre, a white girl wearing an
Indian headdress. Those speci-
mens with the "L" on the ribbon
are the rarest of the Indian head
Large cents, from 1793 to 1857,
one of the most popular denomi-
nations in numismatics circles, are
the subject of most frequent al-
tering. Fake cents of the rare 1804
piece are made by altering the
1801. A fake was manufactured in
the U.S. mint in 1860 by some
employees seeking to profit from
the tremendous demand for that
coin. However, they used an 1818
die for the reverse side and the
fake can be easily distinguished
from the original.
SOME OF the rarest coins still
in circulation are the Liberty
standing quarters minted from
1916 to 1924 which are scarce in
any condition. The quarters struck
during this period had the date
in the same position as in later
issues, but because the date was
raised from the face of the coin
it wore quickly and is almost al-
ways obliterated after a few years
in circulation. The 1918-S is es-
pecially rare for a few of the coins
were struck at the mint with an
"8" over the "7."
While the regular issue coins,
pennies through silver dollars,
can be collected by the average
person at little expense, commem-
orative coins and silver dollars
can become an extensive hobby
to very few people because most
of these specimens were produced
See THE SCIENCE, Page 11
Photographed in our new Bridal Salon, the lovely gow
BRIDE'S MAGAZINE. By Miss Sonia of Bridal Creation
alencon lace, studded with sequins and pearls, yokes I
slightly elongated basque bodice. Lace motifs outline
yoke that forms an apron effect at the back of the c
Cupioni and silk.
Scalloped halo of lace and pleated tulle, accented w
drops and pearl outline.
...when expressed with a fine
Orange Blossom diamond ring
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717 No. University -- Near Hill Auditorium
Other Gowns, 49.95 to 135.00
9 A.M. --5 P.M.
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