Rarity is important because it is one of several factors affecting the price of a token. The
rarity of Civil War Tokens is, at best, an educated guess based on the experience of collectors
and scholars in the field. The Fulds have developed a scale that has been in use for more than
fifteen years and ranges from R-1 (very common) to R-10 (unique--only one known). The complete
rarity scale is presented below :
FULD RARITY SCALE
||ESTIMATED NUMBER IN EXISTENCE
|R - 1
||Greater than 5000 (Very Common)
|R - 2
||2001 to 5000
|R - 3
||501 to 2000
|R - 4
||201 to 500
|R - 5
||76 to 200
|R - 6
||21 to 75
|R - 7
||11 to 20
|R - 8
||5 to 10
|R - 9
||2 to 4 (1 to 4 for Sutler Tokens)
|R - 10
||1 Only (N/A for Sutler Tokens)
This rarity scale is based on the assumption that about 1 million Civil War tokens are still in
existence. Even if this is not a good estimate, the ratings will still have the same relative
meaning. This is especially true of rarities of R-7 or higher, which are based on actual
surveys of the largest collections still in existence and include most of the off-metals known.
Rarity is a relative term. The total number of specimens of the most common varieties is less
than the total number of 1909-S VDB Lincoln cents. However, since Civil War Token are far less
sought-after by collectors, compared to the 1909-S VDB Lincoln cent, they sell for much less.
Rarity defines supply, but collectors establish the demand.
Civil War Tokens were struck in a variety of metals. The table below lists the code (for Store
Cards), metallic abbreviation, and the metal composition :
CIVIL WAR TOKEN COMPOSITION
The amateur collector often has great difficulty distinguishing between the various metals.
The best solution to this problem is to consult a reputable dealer.
(Above information extracted from Fuld's