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Victorian Love Tokens

February 14 - May 10, 2014


Romance, flirtation and love: while the feelings may not change, the customs of communicating them often do. This exhibit explored some of the ways Victorians expressed themselves when courting (dating) or to show affection to friends and family.  This exhibit showcased custom-made coins called “Love Tokens” designed exclusively for their recipient, paper Valentine’s and fashionable accessories such as fans or gloves used to signal romantic intentions.

The exhibit featured nearly 120 carved coins of the Victorian Era. The Victorian Love Tokens displayed in the museum were on loan from Mary Dwyer and were part of a lifelong coin collecting passion of her father Michael Dwyer, Kansas City, MO (deceased).


During his life Mr. Dwyer exhibited his collection at the Aurora History Museum in Aurora, Colorado (1996) and the John Wornall House in Kansas City, MO (2002). He gave love token lectures for coin groups and history groups in St. Louis, MO; Aurora, CO; and Kansas City, MO and wrote articles for the St. Louis Numismatic Society and Love Token Society.


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