Everett Phillips - Attorney and Celebrated Numismatist

In addition to being the 1972 President of the California Numismatic Society, Everett Phillips was also a long-time member of the Fresno Numismatic Society and a winner of the California State Numismatic Association Medal of Merit.

On Friday, July 14, 1972, Phillips and his wife Ruth, had plans to attend the dinner celebration of the reopening of the historic San Francisco Mint.

On the day before, Phillips volunteered to Paul Endler that he could save Wilkins’ having to make the round trip from Fresno to the San Francisco Airport by offering to pick up the Mystery Cent when it arrived on July 14th from Cincinnati.

Wilkins gratefully accepted Phillips’ offer. Little did anyone know how an innocent act of kindness would lead to a series of events that would end up playing a major role in the Mystery Cent’s Legacy.

That evening at the dinner, Phillips showed the coin to Mary Brooks (Director of the U.S. Mint) and Roy Cahoon (Assistant Director). Impressed, Brooks and Cahoon volunteered to autograph the 2” x 2” cardboard coin holder and each did so on opposite sides.

Unfortunately, powerful people in Numismatics interpreted Brooks’ and Cahoon’s autographs as their authentication of the mysterious Cent that no one in the hobby had had a chance to examine. Therefore, the apparent bypassing of the Numismatic Society’s standard authenticating process caused such a stir that Brooks demanded the Mystery Cent’s autographed coin holder be sent back to her.

Mr. Phillips definitely played an interesting and integral part in the Mystery Cent’s Legacy.