Civil War tokens were issued between 1861 and 1864 because there was a total scarcity of coinage. This happened because people began hoarding coins and by mid-1862 all coinage had disappeared from commerce. Although several different types of paper substitutes were issued by the government, the lack of coinage presented a serious problem. The vast majority of Civil War tokens were struck from pure copper and measured 19 to 20 millimeters in diameter although many examples of 23 millimeter tokens exist. It is estimated that more than 6,000 different Civil War tokens were issued, most of them with some patriotic theme. Two of the more popular depictions on CWT are Liberty in her Phrygian cap or an Indian with a headband similar to the Indian Head Cent of 1859.
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