The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 3, Number 45, October 29, 2000: 
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society. 
Copyright (c) 2000, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society. 


   We have no new subscribers this week. Our subscriber count 
   remains at 348. 


   Paul Withers writes: "The sad news had to come and I am 
   sorry to say that Patrick Finn died on Friday. 

   Another shock death, though it had been known for some 
   time that he was ill, is that of John Kent, author and editor 
   of several RIC volumes, and former Keeper of Coins at the 
   British Museum." 


   Dan Demeo  writes: "On Monday, Oct. 23, I attended the 
   service for John Bergman, who passed away last week at 
   age 56.  The service and interment were at Forest Lawn, 
   Cypress, CA, a few miles east of John's home in Lakewood. 
   In attendance were his parents, wife, son and daughter, and 
   grandson.  A number of John's former co-workers also 
   attended, as well as numerous friends and neighbors. 

   The foyer of the church had several displays of Bergman family 
   photos, spanning over 50 years, from photos of young John, to 
   recent photos with his grandson, Brett.  Dr. Paul Estebo of 
   New Hope Community Church in Santa Ana, CA officiated. 

   As a bibliophile and coin collector, I recognized a few faces, 
   but fewer names.  George Kolbe and I saw each other and 
   talked awhile, and reminisced with John's dad about the 
   drawings of past numismatic personalities he had done a few 
   years ago.  From my collecting of ancient coins,  I recognized 
   Dr. Paul Rynearson, a local dealer and author, and his wife, 
   and Catharine Lorber, author and respected researcher.  A 
   reception at the family home followed, but I did not attend." 

   [Editor's note:  The editor of our print journal, The Asylum has 
   received over 20 tributes to John, to be published in our 2000 
   No. 4 issue.  He writes: "The quality of the man is measured 
   by how people miss him."  Tom is still accepting material - he 
   can be reached at] 


   Reid Goldsborough writes: "I'm a journalist doing research on 
   Draped Bust coins, specifically on the model that many, though 
   not all, numismatic authors believe was used for Liberty, Anne 
   Willing Bingham. I'm wondering if any of your readers might 
   know the earliest reference to Anne Bingham as being the 
   Draped Bust Liberty. 

   I do know that this is mentioned in Walter Breen's Complete 
   Encyclopedia of  U.S. and Colonial Coins, copyright 1988. 
   In documenting this, Breen in a footnote references page 177 
   of the book Washington and National Medals by former U.S. 
   Mint director James Snowden, copyright 1861. However, 
   Snowden does not make this connection at all. All Snowden 
   does is suggest that Gilbert Stuart created the sketch that was 
   used by Mint engraver Robert Scot in designing the Draped 
   Bust coins. 

   There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that Anne Bingham 
   was the model. But I'm trying to uncover proof in the form of 
   early references to Anne Bingham and Draped Bust coins. I 
   thought one or more of the eminently edified participants 
   NBS's e-mail list might know. 

   P.S. I'll be happy to share with the participants of your list, 
   all the information about this that I turn up." 

   A previous issue of The E-Sylum (Volume 3, Number 6, 
   February 6, 2000) references an article by Red Henry in the 
   January 15, 2000 issue of  "Penny Wise", the journal of 
   the EAC - perhaps that article can shed some light. 
   Mr. Goldsborough can be reached at: 


   Paul Withers writes:  "I am pleased to announce the birth of a 
   new book :  LEAD WEIGHTS The David Rogers Collection 
   by Norman Biggs and Paul Withers, with a foreword by Geoff 

   The book is A4 format with card covers and has 70 pages with 
   a separate 4 page supplement which has prices and a guide for 
   collectors.  Lead weights might at first seem to be unconnected 
   with numismatics, but David Rogers the late owner of the 
   collection was a keen numismatist and some of the weights are 
   clearly intended to check the weights of coins, or to weigh coins 
   as bullion.  A few goldsmiths weights, intended to weigh precious 
   metal, are also included.  Price 15 GBP.  Post extra. 

   Lead weights have been used in Britain for about 2000 years, 
   but very little has been written about them and what does 
   appear is usually buried deep in archaeological reports. The 
   late David Rogers was collecting at a time when the advance 
   of metal detecting meant that large numbers of new finds were 
   turning up in greater profusion than ever before, or have since. 
   His collection, due to his dedication to the subject, was by far 
   the largest and most important assembled.  Nearly 300 items 
   are arranged, described and illustrated.  Geoff Egan writes in 
   his foreword : 

   "The David Rogers Collection of lead weights, here published 
   in a catalogue raisonne, is probably the largest and most 
   diverse in existence in England for the period it represents. 
   It was assembled over some fifteen years, at a time that turns 
   out to have been uniquely provident of uncharted excavated 
   material, then available in unprecedented quantity.  This 
   combination of chance factors was fortunately exploited by 
   a shrewd collector's instinct, so that with this present work 
   the subject is now advanced significantly......  This present 
   guide is a milestone in the rational, carefully considered 
   interpretation of a most difficult topic." 

   Galata Print Ltd., 
   The Old White Lion, 
   Market Street, 
   UK     SY22 5BX 

   Those in the US may obtain the book through the US 
   distributor, Allan Davisson, who may be contacted at" 


   In response to last week's "Gee honey, it's not as bad as 
   collecting <fill in the blank here>", David Lange writes: 

   "Here's my "blank." I collect any and all coin albums and 
   folders, excepting those made entirely or mostly of plastic. 
   When asked why I do this (and I get that question a lot), 
   I simply say, "because no one else does." 

   While this is not enough to satisfy my girlfriend, who 
   derisively refers to my treasured archive as "dust collectors," 
   it does usually prompt most coin people to pause for a moment 
   and reflect on what is being lost.  Dealers routinely buy 
   collections in albums, pop out the coins (damaging the albums 
   in the process) and then discard the albums as just so much 
   junk. Those that are saved for resale are usually marred further 
   by the dealer writing what he paid for each piece below the 
   holes or applying some irremovable price sticker on the 
   album's front cover. 

   My attempt to preserve these relics of our hobby's past has 
   proved to be a fascinating treasure hunt.  Many dealers know 
   of my interest and simply hand me any albums they can't sell. 
   While some brands, particularly the Library of Coins series, 
   are still sought by collectors for the storing of coins (why 
   would someone do that?), most old albums and folders have 
   little secondary value.  The most obscure brands are usually 
   the least valued, and I can acquire very rare items for a dollar 
   or so. I've amassed a large collection of boards, folders and 
   albums, saving them by title, edition, printing variants, and so 
   on. Nothing has been published on this subject, other than my 
   own articles, and only the most prominent brands ran 
   advertisements that help me to reconstruct their history. For all 
   the others, all that is known is what may be gleaned from the 
   albums themselves. 

   There seems to be no area of numismatics remaining in which 
   one can still be a pioneer, so I'm enjoying this opportunity to 
   collect and catalog items that are otherwise disregarded by 
   the numismatic community.  I hope it remains that way for 
   many years. I don't want to be priced out of yet another 
   collecting field!" 


   Dave's quest to assemble a collection of coin albums is not 
   unlike the quest of earlier numismatic pioneers such as 
   Thomas Cleneay, who was mentioned in the catalog of 
   The Harry W. Bass Jr. Collection - Part IV (Bowers and 
   Merena, November 20-21, 2000, Lot 610) 

   "... In the annals of gold coins, he looms as a very 
   significant figure - a numismatist of the stripe of Virgil 
   Brand: buying one piece is nice, having two is nicer yet, 
   and having three is even better... No doubt we can all thank 
   Thomas Cleneay for preserving for numismatic posterity 
   many gold coins that he was able to acquire from banks 
   and elsewhere in the late 19th century, in an era when the 
   series did not draw a wide circle of interest.  Collectors 
   of Civil War Tokens may know that Cleaneay is one of the 
   most important figures who collected these tokens in the 
   1860's, in the time when they were produced." 

   Many thanks to the cataloguer (QDB?) for mention of 
   The Asylum and the Numismatic Bibliomania Society 
   later in the lot description. 


  One of your editor's favorite coins is the Confederate Half 
  dollar.  A visitor to my web site wrote about a coin in their 

   "It is an 1861 Confederate Half Dollar.  Now please don't think 
   I'm crazy,  I know the chances are 5 billion to 1, if not more, 
   but there you go. How else can you tell (other than weight) if it 
   is a copy, and are the whereabouts of the real coins known? 
   Why would someone make a copy of this?  If it is a copy is it 
   worth about 2cents? Even if it is a copy, I learned a bit of 
   history last night, and it was great fun.  Thank you so much for 
   replying, and if its real, hey; you can help us celebrate!!" 
   My response: 

   "Well, there are restrikes and there are copies.  Copies are a 
   dime a dozen, but the restrikes are actually collectible and 
   worth $2,000 - $3,000.  I had two at one time, but sold one. 

   There were only four originals made and all are accounted 
   for, although I don't personally know the whereabouts of 
   the fourth specimen.  One is in the collection of the American 
   Numismatic Society in New York, one in the hands of a St. 
   Louis collector, and the Jefferson Davis specimen is in the 
   hands of an Arizona collector.  The fourth was sold to a 
   private collector about 25 years ago.  [Perhaps one of our 
   readers knows its whereabouts - Editor] 

   The restrikes were made from the original dies by striking 
   them on a planed-off 1861 Half Dollar.  The diagnostics are: 

    1. Lighter in weight than a real 1861 Half 
    2. Reverse shows pitting from die rust 
    3. Obverse is flattened from the blow of the reverse die. 

   Here's an illustration of the Confederate Half RESTRIKE 
   in the ANS collection:" 


   This week's featured web site is Douglas Bell's Military 
   Payment Certificate site: 

  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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