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My current avatar - "Matty's Tropics"

Discussion in 'Chip Collector Gallery' started by imthatguy, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. imthatguy

    imthatguy Lifetimer/Former Mod
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    ["http://img510.imageshack.us/img510/4942/matty1dk5.jpg" missing here]

    I got a few stacks of these chips from whataboutj a year or so ago. I always thought that it was just a lucky coincidence that someone else had hotstamped my nickname onto their personal chips. :wink:

    Little did I know the history behind these chips. Nana saw a $25 chip with the same hotstamp at the CC&GTCC Convention last week, and almost bought it for me (the $100 pricetag was a little prohibitive). Seeing that made me think that there might be a chance these were casino chips. Thanks to Nana's detective work, she came across this article from a June 2001 CC&GTCC magazine:

    dsc00622my3tv0.jpg
    $25 Matty's Tropics/Las Vegas. Large crown chip manufactured in 1955, salmon with four purple edge inserts, hot-stamped, denomination on reverse. Courtesy of theTim O'Neill Chip Collection. For the novice chip-collector: There's more to this chip than meets the eye. It's a Strip chip with history, both criminal and civil. (Picture of the salmon chip inserted here in the article)

    It was from the information originally gathered by Harvey Fuller and passed on to Howard Herz, editor of Fuller's Index, that Nevada chippers first knew that a series of large crown chips manufactured by TR King in 1955 was ordered and used at a place called Matty's Tropics in Las Vegas. However, without the first findings of fact by Harvey Fuller, I doubt that few people would have given second thought or looks to a large crown chip that had been simply hot-stamped with the name "Matty".

    However, once confirmed that Matty was the abbreviated nickname for Fred Matteoni, and once the records showed that Fred Matteoni owned Matty's Tropics, then finding out that Matty's Tropics was located within a chip's throw of the Sands Hotel on the Strip in the mid-1950's, it became clear that there was more to this chip than having just a simple name stamped on it's clay surface. A Matty chip now had history. Just as the Sands next door, it had a place in the sun, during a Las Vegas time when rats packed gats, gunsels were guys, dolls were dames, and Sinatra did it his way. And the $25 Matty had rarity. Only one hundred were ever manufactured, as confirmed by it's manufacturer, TR King.

    All this info, now we know. Thanks to Harvey Fuller. And his notes on Keno cards. His index. And now his diary.


    If I've done a trade/sale with you lately, chances are good that I included one of these very collectable chips with your item. Hold onto it!

    If anybody has seen any other examples, please let me know. Just thought I'd share a little tidbit of history - big thanks to Nana for her research!
     
    #1
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 24, 2015
    NanaBanana likes this.
  2. Button Potato

    Button Potato World Series Final Table
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    Wow. Nice find. When I read the thread title, I almost thought (gasp), "another custom set?"
     
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  3. guinness

    guinness Degen Gatekeeper
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    Very cool!
     
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  4. PAZ914

    PAZ914 Well-Known Member
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    Nice chips with a great history!
     
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  5. mizuchaud

    mizuchaud Creativity Alliance

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    Oh, I was gonna keep mine anyway, due to the LG Crown mold.:heart:
    Sweet find.

    :)
     
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  6. AlbinoDragon

    AlbinoDragon Well-Known Member
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    I've got mine and never planned on parting with it before I saw this... now I KNOW I won't!

    Thanks for the background info on what is a really cool chip.
     
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  7. StevenH72

    StevenH72 Creativity Alliance

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    Wow, that is amazing, it must a great feeling to find out a chip you thought was a simple custom chip had such a history behind it.
     
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  8. links_slayer

    links_slayer Master of the 3-Putt Par
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    i couldn't agree more! :)
     
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  9. beekeeper

    beekeeper Creativity Alliance

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    Awesome chips and great history.
     
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  10. TenPercenter

    TenPercenter Administrator
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  11. NanaBanana

    NanaBanana Good Will Ambassador/Mod
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    I had forgot all about this, from back in 2008. Nice little re-read. And some cool chips. :)
     
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