The collecting of tokens, is called "exonumia". Generally they have a merchants name, sometimes a town and state, and also the required "good for 5¢" (or other denomination) legend somewhere on the token. Trade tokens are often made from aluminum, or brass. Some are seen in nickel, fiber, celluloid and vulcanite. The most desirable tokens have the town and state on the token. Many factors affect value of tokens, including if the town and state are on the token, the rarity, condition and type of business. Another important factor is the number of tokens known from the town.
Token collecting combines the aesthetic appreciations of a coin collector with the study of the past that interests historians. - Jerry Adams
Tokens came in all sizes and shape. They were; round, rectangular, triangle, scalloped,oval, square, pentagon, octogon and pentagon . Some were as small as a dime while others were as large as a 50 cent piece. Most were nickel to quarter size. They ranged in value from 2 1/2c to 12 1/2c or were good for one drink, a cigar or a smile.
I have read that a "smile" was either a small whiskey or a small bottle of whiskey. At this time, I don't know which is correct or if both are. Maybe someone reading this has specific knowledge and will share it so we can all learn.
The materials used in the manufacturing of a token was as varied as the size, shape and value of tokens. Brass and aluminum (back then Aluminum was the "new" metal and considered precious) were the most common but not the only materials used. Bronze, nickel (a.k.a. German Nickel or White Metal), copper, lead, fiber, pewter, cardboard and vulcanite (hard rubber) were also used.