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Missouri Gooseberry Collection

Gooseberries and coin collecting, what in the world do they have in common? Not much, but this collection was shared with love. Gooseberries are small tiny sour berries that make a wonderful pie, loved by my great-grandfather, a humble man but an adventuresome and mysterious man. Along with gooseberries he loved traveling the world and he loved collecting. Who knew it was even possible in the late 1800s and early 1900s to travel to so many countries, and to bring back treasures for future generations.

My great-grandfather passed on his love of collecting to his son, my grandfather, and many an evening was spent eating gooseberry pie and looking at new found treasures in a little town near the Missouri River. My grandfather shared his passion with his daughter, my Mom. “Gooseberries” became a code name for the coins they loved to study while sitting around the dining table. Mom’s two young daughters wanted to help; one spent hours looking at Buffalo nickel books, while the other (the writer) would pull herself up to the table and just be a pest, saying “Me help! Me help too?"

Since then many years have passed, and those coins and treasures, our “gooseberries” have finally come out of the dark box to be shared and admired as they were meant to be. Who knows, one of the coins you purchase today could have been among the many that were hidden in the old black tea kettle … buried under the gooseberry bush! But, that is another story…

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