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The E-Sylum:  Volume 3, Number 48, November 19, 2000, Article 7

PIKE'S ARITHMETIC 

   Philip L. Mossman writes: "I'd like to comment regarding the 
   reference to "Pike's Arithmetic -- A New and Complete 
   System of  Arithmetic Composed for the Use of the Citizens 
   of the United  States." 

   I agree this is a fascinating text which explains clearly the many 
   intricacies of the colonial and early federal monetary systems. 
   I used it liberally, in addition to other resources, in my own 
   book, “Money of the American Colonies and Confederation,” 
   (New York, 1993)  for the preparation  of Appendix I.  In 
   that section, I attempted to outline the complex computations 
   used to convert currencies between the various local monies 
   of account of the period and the new federal denominations. 
   I’m glad to see that other readers appreciate Pike’s work - 
   200 plus years later!" 

   Eric P. Newman adds:  "I was delighted to have Edward A. 
   Krivoniak make reference to numismatic material in the early 
   American arithmetic books of Nicholas Pike through reading 
   Isaac Asimov who seemed to write about almost every subject. 
   This is serendipity at its best.  I have both Pike editions in my 
   library and used them and other early American mathematics 
   books and pamphlets to prepare the tables beginning on page 
   471 of the fourth edition of The Early Paper Money of America. 
   The ability of Americans to make complex money exchange 
   calculations during the American Colonial and Confederation 
   periods and beyond is astounding.  All of this points to the 
   broad and exciting scope of  numismatic literature." 

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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