Introducing Nature Boy

By Chris Dempsey LM64 and Arturo DelFavero RM552

A few months back, I began working on a date and mintmark set of original hobo nickels. When the first coin pictured here, carved on a 1917-S nickel became available, I gave my best effort to acquire it for my set, and I was fortunate to do so. Within hours, my good friend Art DelFavero had located two other matches while perusing the OHNS archives. Upon my insistence, Art named this carver "Nature Boy," since the absence of a collar makes his carvings seem naked from the neck down.

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The carving characteristics for "Nature Boy" are listed as follows:

  1. Straight neck with no collar.
  2. Simple, shallow rounded derby with a plain, brim.
  3. Hat band comprised of vertical lines with a simple, three square hat bow.
  4. Hat is high on head, with the brim ending to the left of the "L" of LIBERTY.
  5. Standard ear, hollowed out in the center, and a small amount of metal left for the ear lobe.
  6. Beard and hair crafted with small curved cuts.
  7. Several small cuts behind the eye give the appearance of crow's feet.
  8. Primarily unaltered profile. Some examples may have a slight notch at the top of the nose.
  9. Date and LIBERTY left intact.