The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 3, Number 34, August 20, 2000: 
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society. 
Copyright (c) 2000, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society. 


   We have one new subscriber this week:  Dick Duncan of 
   Lancaster, PA.  Welcome aboard!  This brings our subscriber 
   count to 334. 


   NBS Board member Pete Smith writes: "It was NBS Vice 
   President Tom Sheehan's exhibit on "Building a Set of The 
   Numismatist" that took first place in the Numismatic Literature 
   classification.  Board member Scott Rubin took second place 
   with "Auction Catalogs That Led Me to Collect Numismatic 
   Literature."  My exhibit on "An Illustrated History of Four 
   Mints in Philadelphia" took second place in the Local Interest 


   Pete Smith also sent this note about his convention experiences: 
   "My talk on literature and illustrations of the Philadelphia Mints 
   ran longer than the time suggested.  I had at least a half an 
   hour of additional material that I could have included.  As an 
   example, I did not tell of my attempt to visit the first Philadelphia 

   The current Mint shows a map of the location of previous 
   mints and mentions a marker on the Federal Building 
   commemorating the first mint.  I walked around three sides 
   of the Federal Building and could not find a marker.  I asked 
   two guards at the public entrance and they had never heard 
   of a marker for the first mint.  Another guard at the employee 
   entrance had the same reaction.  She suggested I try the GSA 
   office on the fourth floor saying they would know if anyone 
   would.  There I found two more people who had never heard 
   of a marker for the first mint.  One woman said that she had 
   worked for the government for 29 years and had worked in 
   that building since it was opened.  She assured me that there 
   was no marker on the building. 

   I talked to someone at the ANA convention who had seen 
   the marker on a previous visit.  The south end of the Federal 
   building was inaccessible because of construction.  I suspect 
   the marker, if it still exists, was behind the construction fences. 
   I wonder if any of the workers in the current Federal Building 
   are aware that they occupy the site of the first building 
   constructed by our government." 


   Last week's excerpt from the 1863 pamphlet "Something 
   About Coins"  led us to wonder if the San Francisco mint's 
   visitors logs still exist, which would enable us to pinpoint the 
   date of author Barra's visit.  Karl Moulton writes:  "I agree 
   with the view that if the San Francisco visitor register does 
   survive, it would be in the Pacific Division of the National 

   Jenny and I spent several days going through the visitor 
   registers for the Philadelphia Mint (1836-1851) and found 
   many interesting entries.  I can say with certainty that the 
   Branch Mint visitor registers are not in the Mid-Atlantic region 
   office in Philadelphia." 


   Denis Loring ferreted out a manatee coin with the help of 
   some E-Sylum readers.   He had been looking for one as 
   a gift to his wife.  Your editor consulted a local club 
   member (Corleen Chesonis) who collects images of 
   wildlife on coins.   She knew of the following issues: 

       * 1 cent from Guyana minted 1976-1980 (and maybe later) 
       * 1974 50 colones from Costa Rica - part of the Wildlife 
          Conservation series, non-circulating legal tender 

   Denis reports:  "Pete Smith not only found out about this one 
   [the Costa Rican piece], but got one for me at ANA!  I gave 
   it to Donna when she picked me up at the airport -- her grin 
   lit up the room!" 


   Paul Schultz writes: "I found the "Something About Coins" 
   pamphlet interesting, but I think the pamphlet contains and 
   perpetuates a common misquote. It cites the proverb of 
   money as the root of all evil, and goes on to defend its 
   (money's) use. The original quote is from the Bible, and it 
   states that the  LOVE of money is the root of all evil 
   (First letter of Paul to Timothy (i.e.1st Timothy), Chapter 6 
   verse 10.  Here are verses 9 and 10 together to maintain 
   the context: 

   9.  But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, 
        into a snare, into many senseless and hurtful desires 
        that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 

  10.  For the love of money is the root of all evils; it is 
         through this craving that some have wandered away 
         from the faith and pierced their hearts with many pangs. 

   Since this is about 1,950 years old, I think we can probably 
   regard it as the original source of the saying.  Obviously, 
   money is not being called evil here, but the love of it above 
   other things that are more important. The misquote, however, 
   is a very common one, and it leads to a very different meaning 
   which can easily be disputed, like in the pamphlet." 


   [Editor's note:  as mentioned previously, we generally avoid 
   referencing businesses or commercial web sites, but the 
   following submissions are sure to be of interest to bibliophiles, 
   especially those who are still new to using the net to search for 

   Howard Daniel writes: "Paper Treasures is a very large used 
   book and periodical store at 9595 Congress Street in New 
   Market, Virginia which is open seven days a week.  Their 
   mailing address is P.O. Box 1160, New Market, VA 22844 
   and their telephone number is 540-740-3135.  In their 
   "Hobby" section, they always seem to have numismatic 
   material that would be of interest to NBS members.  It is rare 
   that I find something in my area of interest (Southeast Asia), 
   but I often see old U.S. auction catalogs with and without the 
   prices realized, and many other U.S. numismatic publications. 
   Their prices are reasonable and every NBS member should 
   stop there when they are in the northern half of the Shenandoah 
   Valley of Virginia." 

   Doug Andrews of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada writes: "I am 
   an avid reader of The E-Sylum. I offer the following reviews of 
   used booksellers' websites that may well interest NBS members. 

   The first is  This site boasts a staggering 19 
   million listings from used book vendors. It bills itself as "the 
   world's largest network of independent booksellers." Online 
   payment is accepted by participating dealers. 

   A search using the keyword "numismatics" returned 4750 
   matches; "coin collecting" some 820.  These are significant 
   numbers, and represent offerings that are focused on American, 
   British, and Canadian numismatic interests. There are, however, 
   many volumes dealing with ancient and European coinage and 
   related topics. 

   The other website is It offers books sold by both 
   itself and by member dealers. Alibris guarantees the security of 
   its online payment system.  Its trademark is "Books You 
   Thought You'd Never Find," and it seems to live up to this 
   promise.  The books cover a considerable range of worldwide 
   numismatic tastes.  Searching under "numismatics" returned hits 
   for 1691 volumes. 

   Both websites offer browse, search, payment, and shipping 
   options that show the companies operating them intend to be 
   competitive  with the most advanced e-tailers on the Internet." 


   Donn Pearlman, in his "Pearlman's People" column in 
   the August 2000 issue of The Numismatist, wrote a 
   tongue-in-cheek Question & Answer segment using 
   real questions frequently submitted by hobby newcomers. 
   Here's one gem: 

   Q: Why do so many of the new golden dollars have 
        ugly spots and tarnish? 

   A: Obviously, the Mint used impure gold. 


   This week's featured web site showcases Philippine guerrilla 
   money of World War II: 

  Wayne Homren 
  Numismatic Bibliomania Society 

  The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a 
  non-profit organization promoting numismatic 
  literature.   For more information please see 
  our web site at 
  There is a membership application available on 
  the web site.  To join, print the application and 
  return it with your check to the address printed 
  on the application.   For those without web access, 
  contact Dave Hirt, NBS Secretary-Treasurer, 
  5911 Quinn Orchard Road, Frederick, MD 21704 

  (To be removed from this mailing list 
   write to me at   

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