Contributed By Doug West, Ph.D.
Collecting Sales Tax Tokens has been a part of numismatics for years and can be a lot of fun. This brief article gives the collector an introduction to the origins, identification, and current prices of common tax tokens.
Background of the Tax Token
Currently there are no known tax tokens in circulation. They were mainly products of the depression of the 1930's along with wooden nickels, depression scrip, and other kinds of emergency money. They were meant to assist in the collection of consumer's sales taxes when the amount due was only a fraction of a cent. During the Great Depression people did not like the idea of paying a whole penny tax on a small purchase, say, 25 cents. The tokens served as a useful device to make the new tax laws more palatable to the buying public.