Saturday, November 5, 2011

Treasures uncovered...New-Century Club of Wilmington

More about my recent discoveries.

My next find a few days later at the Stoud Sunday Market in Adamstown, PA, was found buried among a full box of old papers from the late 1890s to early 1900s. This issued, uncanceled certificate, in incredible condition except for the two folds, is from the New-Century Club of Wilmington dated 1912. From Wikipedia, "The New Century Club was a progressive upper class woman's group dedicated to social improvement and charity as well as woman's suffrage issues. Notable members of the Club included Emily P. Bissell, a Red Cross campaigner against tuberculosis who has a state hospital named after her" as well as a US postage stamp, "and Emalea Pusey Warner, who successfully campaigned for public vocational education and has a local elementary school named in her honor. Speakers at the club included future president Woodrow Wilson and birth control advocate Margaret Sanger." The $30,000 capital was used to create a meeting place for the ladies which stands today used as a theater for children.

New-Century Club of Wilmington dated 1912

I posted a question on the group account of LinkedIn for Scripophily last week asking about the smallest capital issued for a stock and I think Terry Cox has the provided the details of the issue. As per Terry, "The Middletown & Northeastern Railway Co of Columbus, OH was incorporated in 1913 with a capitalization of $1000. Par value was $100. Certificate #1 was issued for 6 shares and therefore represented controlling interest." Thanks Terry. Anyone own one?

Selim Chanderli wrote "I have one of 5'000 Swiss francs from 1933, but I don't know what was the exchange rate CHF/$ at this time..." So what would it be worth in USD in 1933? After some research and math, made easier since both companies were on a different but standard gold measure, 5'000 CHF converts in 1933 to $2184.33.  

Please look though your collections and contribute to this discussion on LinkedIn. 


  1. any body know if Lancaster caramel company blank stocks are worth from 1894.

  2. Hello Charles,

    Lancaster Caramel Company Stock Certificate, 1894

    Milton Hershey started the Lancaster Caramel Company in 1886 after he returned to Lancaster, Pennsylvania following the failure of his New York City candy business. The Lancaster business would be his third confectionery venture.

    The Lancaster Caramel Company was incorporated on February 8, 1894. It was at this time that Hershey Chocolate Company was formally organized as a subsidiary of the Lancaster Caramel Company. Stock was issued to a small group of men as part of the legal requirements of incorporation. Milton Hershey, of course, owned the majority of the stock. Other holders included: William. L. Blair, Edward M. Robinsion, Carl Kleinbeck, of Chicago, and Frank B. Snavely, of Chicago. The Hershey Chocolate Company was listed as a subsidiary of the Caramel Company. When Milton Hershey sold the Lancaster Caramel Company on August 10, 1900 to the American Caramel Company for $1 million, he retained the rights to the Hershey Chocolate Company.
    Credit: Courtesy of the Hershey Community Archives

    Therefore, I suspect that since there were only 5 stock holders, the odds of finding an issued certificate are pretty unlikely so your "remainder" certificate is all that is available. I would suggest that this certificate would have interest to cross collectables and would be desirable to many fans of Hershey.

    How many certificates exist will have an effect on the price. A retail price guide based on other similar items that have been for sale and sold over the last several years, if there are less than a few, I estimate the retail value between $75 - $130 that assumes you advertise and are willing to hold the certificates for a few years. At the wholesale price, I would put the price between $45 and $55 dollars. If you have more than a few but not the whole book of remainders, I would lower all of the prices by 20-25%. Hope that helps.

    If you are interested in selling or have other questions, please contact me at

    Best wishes,

  3. I have a 1894 Lancaster Caramel stock certificate that is not signed. I'm interested in selling

    1. You can contact me at

    2. You can contact me at