ETCETERA - 1875 $5 bill will get you $161,000 at auction

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Jim McGuinn, owner of Hot Poop on Main Street, has a league of friends in all the right places, it seems, who send him the greatest tidbits.

Take Garry Shrum, a friend of his dating back to grade school, who tipped Jim off to the sale of a First National Bank of Walla Walla $5 bill from 1875 with, Washington Territory, on it.

The rare five-spot sold for $161,000 at the Heritage Memphis Currency Auction June 17-19 in Memphis, Tenn. The auction was in conjunction with the Memphis International Paper Money Show, which demonstrated "continued strength in the rare currency market, successfully realizing $5.1 million."

"This auction contained a wide variety of significant U.S. and world notes," said Allen Mincho, director of Currency Auctions at Heritage. "Savvy collectors - both at the show and online - were more than happy to take advantage of the offerings."

How'd the Walla Walla fiver do when compared with other offerings? An exceedingly rare green ink Russian-American Company 1 Ruble (1816-1867, one of two known, finished at $18,975; and a Hawaii Republic of Hawaii Silver Certificate of Deposit $10 1895 (1897) realized $17,250.

A press release notes tha t the highest price realized in the auction came near the end of Session Three with the sale of the Walla Walla, Washington Territory $5 bill.

Jim suggested I check my desk at work because "You might have one of these stuffed in the back! I always heard that ‘five'll get you 10' was Walla Walla prison sentence lingo," Jim said. "It would now seem that ‘five'll get you $161,00.00' is the new Walla Walla ultimate Eureka yell when cleaning your great-grandparent's attic."

Tom Chao, who blogs as nutmegcollector, noted online that the Walla Walla $5 is "a wonderful note, which is new to the market and offered here to the collecting community for the first time. It comes from the only bank in the state of Washington to have issued First Charter Territorial examples, and becomes only the third First Charter Territorial reported from Washington state. The other two examples have been ensconced in major private collections for some years, with one grading Very Good and the other Extremely Fine.

"Neither has ever been offered at public sale, but we do know that the higher-grade specimen traded hands several years ago at a number well into the six figure range.

The example offered for sale in June was "outstanding in every respect, displaying bright paper, a vivid red overprint, and superb colors which look nearly as nice as they did on the day this note was printed 130 years ago," nutmegcollector continued.

"For the collector putting together a set of Territorial notes, for the Washington collector assembling an ultimate state type set, or for the collector who simply appreciates the very finest in National Bank Note rarities from all states, this note is one which absolutely should be brought home tonight," he wrote.

Jim's friend Garry said, "What I've discovered is it's mind-boggling how many people are into collecting. The prices that we're realizing for rare pieces are mind-blowing." For example, one nickel sold recently for about $3 million.

"You wonder when people are paying this kind of money for this one piece, what's the rest of their collection like? Is it worth $100 million or more for the whole collection?"

He sees many things auctioned off, items he termed as "all the wild stuff," such as Jack Ruby's hat that last year sold for about $48,000. Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald, after Oswald assassinated President John F. Kennedy. And the flag patch off the jacket Peter Fonda wore in "Easy Rider" sold for $89,625.

There are more than two million pieces on the Heritage Auction archives website, Garry said. "Go on the archives to see what's sold," Garry urged.

•••

Chris Cooper, CASA program manager for Umatilla and Morrow County Head Start, talked about the program during the July 13 Milton-Freewater Rotary Club meeting, said member Robby Robbins.

The Court Appointed Special Advocate program began about 30 years ago when a judge became concerned about making decisions on behalf of abused and neglected children without enough information. He conceived the idea of appointing community volunteers to speak up for the best interests of the child in the courtroom.

CASA serves four distinct functions: Investigator, advocate, facilitator and monitor. It investigates all relevant facts in the situation, interviews all concerned parties including the parents, the child, welfare workers, foster families, and counselors; ensures that all relevant facts are presented to the court and recommends what appears to be in the best interest of the child; expedites the placement of the child in a safe permanent home on a timely basis; and continues to report on the child's situation during the duration of the case, ensuring that court-ordered services are being provided. CASA participants are ordinary men and women from all walks of life who volunteer to serve as advocates for children entering the welfare system. Each volunteer commits to 10-20 hours per month over a period of approximately two years. CASA applicants must pass a fingerprint and criminal history background check, complete 36 hours of initial training and orientation, and be sworn in as officers of the court. There are about 250 children currently in foster care and CASA volunteers are always needed, Chris told the group. For more details, contact Chris at 541-922-3482 or ccooper@umchs.org .

•••

Helping others through unity of service is what Walla Walla Exchange Club is all about. During the regular Monday meeting July 12 members handed out $38,000 to various programs in the community. Before an address by National Exchange Club President Claude Carmack, the Exchange presented a $25,000 check to the Home Team of Children's Home Society and large checks to Campfire, Walla Walla Community Hospice and the CART and Friends programs.

•••

An Eagle Court of Honor June 26 recognized Alex Naylor, 16, of Dayton, who earned his Eagle Scout badge on Jan. 12.

The event feted his scouting accomplishments with friends, family and the community.

For his Eagle project, Alex replaced a wildlife water guzzler that had been destroyed in the Columbia Complex Fire on the Umatilla National Forest in Columbia County.

Alex worked with Bill Dowdy, a U.S. Forest Service wildlife biologist, to plan the replacement, arrange and secure all materials from the Forest Service. He scheduled and supervised a volunteer crew and oversaw all aspects of construction.

At his Eagle ceremony, six members of Cub Scout Pack 313 presented and retired the colors. Jasmine Helm, Pack 313 cubmaster, also participated. Alex was joined by older brothers Tom Naylor of Forest Grove, Ore., who received his Eagle Scout badge in 2003, and Jack Naylor of Salem, who received his Eagle Scout badge in 2006. Brian Houdak, an Eagle Scout and scoutmaster of Dayton's Boy Scout Troop 332, presented the badge.

Dayton farmer Eric Thorn, Thorn Farms, shared Rudyard Kilpling's poem, "If," including his reflections on a young man's future. Paul Naylor, Alex's father, spoke of service beyond scouting and commended the community for supporting the local Boy Scout troop.

Alex began as a Cub Scout in 2001 with Pack 332, Pioneer District, Blue Mountain Council, Dayton. He earned Cub Scouting's highest rank, The Arrow of Light Award on May 18, 2005.

On that same day, Alex joined Troop 332. He worked through the ranks of Scout, Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star and then made Life rank on June 24, 2008. To date, he has earned 27 merit badges. His leadership positions have included Patrol Leader and Senior Patrol Leader.

A sophomore this fall at Dayton High School, Alex is active on the football and baseball teams, Youth and Government, Knowledge Bowl and Future Business Leaders of America. He is a ski cross racer with the United States of America Snowboard Association, competes on the Dayton Swim Team and is a new life member of the National Eagle Scout Association.

His parents are Paul and Lisa Naylor, who reside with him in Dayton. Paul is retired a U.S. Forest Service employee and fly fisherman and Lisa works with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Dayton.

•••

Ashley Schirmer, 15, College Place, attended a summer camp counseling training offered through Pioneer United Methodist Church.

The weeklong session was at Camp F ne ar Ellensburg. Paired with experienced counselors, Ashley worked in Project Purple, a camping experience for 61 children whose parents, either one or both, had been deployed in the military to the Middle East.

Once she returned home, she told grandparents Bill and Jody Schirmer of Walla Walla that it was "very, very wonderful" and she wants to be a counselor there again next summer.

The counselors took first- through third-graders in the Primary Adventure group to a camp at Ocean Park on the Washington coast for five days. Ashley co-counseled a group of seven kids.

"We're so proud of her to be responsible and take charge," Jody said. Ashley took the initiative to apply for the training program and completed it with flying colors. And she was invited to stay an extra day to celebrate with the older counselors after camp was over, Jody added.

Ashley is the daughter of Jack Page of College Place, and the late Jayne Schirmer. She will be a sophomore at Walla Walla High School where she enjoys participating in the JROTC program.

•••

Walla Wallans Don and Jean Parker's son-in-law Dr. Larry Over was instrumental in an effort to reconstruct a Milwaukie, Ore., woman's horribly disfigured face.

Larry, a Eugene dentist who specializes in facial prosthetics, is married to the Parkers' daughter, Walla Walla native Beth Anne Parker Over.

On July 8, Larry's patient, Chrissy Steltz, removed a black concealing mask in order to model a new prosthetic face for the first time at Larry's Eugene office. The mask had concealed a crater where her cheeks, eyes and nose had been prior to a devastating accident 11 years ago. She was 16 and at a party where other teenagers were drinking heavily. A shotgun blast blew away her cheeks, eyes and nose, a July 11 article in The Sunday Oregonian reported. She is unable to open her rebuilt jaw wide enough to eat a sandwich.

At 17 she met partner Geoffrey Dilger, also blind. Now 27, she and Geoffrey have a 1-year-old son, Geoffrey Jr.

When Chrissy sought to have her face reconstructed, Larry came up with the idea to make a face that would imitate her original features using acrylic eyes and silicone nose and skin that would fit over her scars like a realistic mask, The Oregonian reported.

Surgeons worked for years gradually grafting bone on, Jean said. Four surgeries prepared Chrissy for the prosthesis, which snaps into implants and uses tiny magnets. Larry, Dr. Eric Dierks, a Portland head-and-neck surgeon, and Dr. David Trainer, a Florida-based prosthetist specializing in faces, collaborated on the remarkable project. Although Larry and Eric have worked together on many cases, this was the most complicated, the article noted. They took great pains to make it natural looking, to make sure it looked like photos of her, matched her skin color and and gave her eyes a normal gaze. The unveiling of Chrissy's new prosthesis was held for media and family, Jean said. "It was very emotional for everyone involved," Jean remarked. Beth told her there wasn't a dry eye in the place. When Chrissy revealed her face to her son for the first time, he smiled, giggled and moved off toward the family cat. A relief for Chrissy, who had worried about how he'd react.

This story has also been shared in many newspapers, on TV's "Nightline," "2020" and "Inside Edition" and in "People" magazine. After watching the "Nightline" report, Jean said she had never been so touched by a story and by a person.

A 1980 Walla Walla High School graduate, Beth met Larry while attending Oregon Health Sciences University Dental School. She trained as a dental hygienist and Larry went for additional training at the University of Indiana. Beth is currently an at-home mom to their three children, Maggie, 15, Gwen, 13, and John Wylie, 8.

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or 526-8313.

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