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The E-Sylum: Volume 17, Number 10, March 9, 2014, Article 9

DOWNIES TO SELL WILLIAM D. CRAIG COLLECTION

Dr K.A. Rodgers forwarded this news from down under. Thanks! -Editor

craig coin cover small In late February Downies announced they had scored a major coup for their July auction, the sale of the William D. Craig collection of world coins.

It is regrettable that Craig’s name may mean little to too many readers. For the benefit of those with a lot less grey hair than myself, long before there was a Standard Catalog of World Coins, there was Craig and Yeoman. These two authors compiled the coin catalogs that became the principle source of information on world coins for thousands of collectors around the globe. Their C- and Y- catalogue numbers are still used by SCWC for a number of countries. Yeoman dealt with issues post-1850. Craig catalogued the coins of 1750-1850. In his Coins of the World 1750-1850 Craig states, “This catalog is designed to extend Richard S. Yeoman’s A Catalog of Modern World Coins backward another century” …

William D. Craig was born in the USA c. 1920. He became an attorney. Somewhere along the way he fell in love with Germanic coins. His first enterprise in numismatic authorship came in 1954 with his privately published Germanic coinages (Charlemagne through Wilhelm II). It became the standard reference in the field.

His world coin book first appeared in 1966 with the lengthy title: Coins of the World 1750-1850 I: Coins of the Western World; II: Coins of Africa and Asia. I always assumed that more volumes had been intended.

After four and half years of research a corrected and enlarged version in a larger format appeared in 1971 having the shortened title. A third updated edition was published in 1976.

In 1966 Craig upped-sticks and moved to Hobart, Tasmania. Here he discovered a new passion: Australian revenue stamps. Over thirty years he complied, edited and published nine comprehensive catalogues of Commonwealth and Australian States revenue stamps. The first on Tasmania appeared in 1978; the last for Victoria in 1999. The most recent update was issued in 2002.

Each catalogue was a scholarly work. Each came annotated and included newly researched information that had not been published previously. Like his Germanic coinage work these were privately published by Craig under the moniker Revenue and Railstamp Publications.

Today at a highly respectable 95 he resides in a nursing home on the Aussie mainland. His collection will comprise a major segment of Downies sale 317 on July 8-10 to be held in their Block Arcade auction rooms, 98 –100 Elizabeth Street, Melbourne. The catalog for this sale is currently being compiled. Interested readers wanting details will need to keep a weather eye on the Downies website: www.downies.com/aca.

Catalogs can be ordered now from phone: +613 8677 8800; fax: +613 8677 8899; email: auctions@downies.com

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Wayne Homren, Editor

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