The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 5, Number 24, June 9, 2002:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2002, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  We have no new subscribers this week.  Our subscriber
  count holds at 469.


  In response top last week's piece about nude models for
  numismatic medals, Tom DeLorey writes: "I didn't know
  you used to work for MedArtCo."

  [Well, I didn't.  It was Dick Johnson who submitted that
  piece, and I somehow forgot to attribute it to him.
  I guess the subject just got me all aquiver....  Sorry!


  Fred Lake writes: "Our sale #64, which closes on July 9,
  2002, is now available for viewing on our web site at:

  The sale features selections from the numismatic libraries of
  Bill Weber and David Lange.  You will find reference books
  on a wide variety of subjects, including works on Early
  Copper (particularly Half Cents and Large Cents) and also
  many of Dave Lange's manuscripts showing work in progress.
  The 583 lots are arranged by subject matter so that you may
  select areas of interest more readily."


  Likewise, George Frederick Kolbe's 88th sale closes
  June 14th, 2002.   For more information, see the web
  site ( or contact George at


  NBS Vice President John Adams writes: "Does our readership
  include anyone facile in Latin ?  What meaneth "AMAT AUREA
  CONDERE SAECLA" ?  All and any help appreciated."
  [Latin's all Greek to me - can any of our readers help?  I did
  find an online Latin-English dictionary, but came up empty.  -Editor]


  In a posting to the Pittsburgh Numismatic Society newsgroup,
  Kavan Ratanuga writes: "I find it interesting that the U.S. had
  experimented with Bakelite Patterns in 1942 and Aluminum
  Patterns in 1974 at the same time, for the same reasons as in
  Ceylon Patterns of 1942 1 cent in Bakelite, 1971 in Steel,
  Nickel-Brass Clad Steel and Aluminum and 1975.  Aluminum
  was adopted in 1978 for these Sri Lanka 5 cent and 10 cent

  All these are very very rare with only 2 or 3 known to exist.
  The SriLanka patterns are imaged and discussed in and links from it
  as in

  Thanks to information in the U.S. pattern book by Andrew
  Pollock lent to me by Wayne I have added a few comments
  on the corresponding U.S. patterns and give online links for
  more details."

  [I was pleased to have Kavan visit last weekend.  While I
  toiled on The E-Sylum, he was researching the bakelite
  pieces in my library.  You never know when having the 1942
  volume of The Numismatist on the shelf will come in handy.
  Please take some time to peruse his web site.

  Also, Kavan would like to contact Gary Alt with a question
  about the patterns - does anyone have an address for him?


  Darryl Atchison writes: "I need to find out the title and
  publication date of Quarterman Publication's Volume 5
  of  "Gleanings From The Numismatist".  I know that there
  are at least 8 titles in this series and I have identified 7 of
  the 8 - but not volume 5.

  Some of the other titles from the Quarterman "Gleanings
  from the Numismatist" series are as follows:

  Token collector's pages. ? Boston : Quarterman Publications,
  1972. ? (8), 253, (3) p., ill. ? Gleanings from the Numismatist
  : Vol. 3

  Canadian tokens and medals : an anthology. ? Lawrence, Mass.
  : Quarterman Publications, 1974. ? 331 p., ill. ? Gleanings
  from the Numismatist : Vol. 4

  World countermarks on medieval and modern coins : an
  anthology. ? Lawrence, Mass. : Quarterman publications, 1976.
  ? 401 p., ill. ? Gleanings from the Numismatist : Vol. 8

  Any help in identifying Volume 5 would be greatly appreciated."

  [Darryl notes that there is an article in the Vol 9, No. 3 issue
  of The Asylum.   Written by Charles Davis, it is titled
  "Quarterman Publications Trial List".   The list included nos.
  1,2,3,6 and 7 in the "Gleanings from The Numismatist" series.
  A peek in my library produced no. 5:

  The Coinages of Latin American and the Caribbean
  Quarterman Publications, Inc., Lawrence, Mass, 1974
  486p., ill. - Gleanings from the Numismatist : Vol. 5

  So now the Gleanings list is complete... unless someone
  knows of a volume 9 or 10?   After ten years it's time
  for an update to the trial list. If anyone's game, please
  contact me or The Asylum editors.  Thanks  -Editor]


  On a related note, Darryl Atchison adds: "Do you have any
  suggestions on where I could obtain a listing of TAMS
  publications - not an index to their journal but stand-alone
  publications such as the Julian text on U.S. medals."


  Your Editor is getting numismatic Altzheimer's - I forget
  what's in my own library.  I was excited to review my copy
  of Crosby's Early Coins of America and see it has the rare
  1873 title page and introduction.  But  inside I found a card for
  an exhibit I did at an ANA convention a  few years ago,
  and I had written up the fact about the title page.  I'm still
  excited, but not as much....


  On the topic of library insurance, David Block adds:
  "Chubb is in the business of specialized insurance. Another
  possibility is State Farm, but State Farm  might only add a
  rider to an existing policy."


  Mark Borckardt writes: "While conducting research for his
  New Hampshire currency project, Dave Bowers found
  an interesting article in the October 1881 issue of The
  Granite Monthly, reproducing the journal of Frederick G.
  Stark, who traveled from Manchester, NH to New York
  and Philadelphia in October 1828. The entire article, soon
  to be reprinted in The Coin Collector, provides an intriguing
  view of travel 174 years ago. Part of the travel was by steam
  ship. "She travels at the rate of about eight or nine miles an
  hour with the steam alone, and ten or twelve when she has
  the advantage of a fair wind."

  On October 14, 1828, after attending a Quaker funeral,
  Stark continued to the United States Mint. "There they were,
  striking off half dollars in one room, and cents in another. The
  other part of the works were not in operation.  I enquired how
  many half dollars they struck off in a minute, and they said 43.
  The pieces of silver were plated out and cut to the right size
  previously, so that they were only given the impression.  It
  took three men to do this; all of them had hold of the machine
  at a time, and it appeared to be pretty hard labour."

  This was in the days of the first Mint in Philadelphia, with
  coinage still conducted by screw press.  The rate of coinage
  seems to be considerable, given the technology then in use."


  Adrián González Salinas of  Monterrey, N.L. México writes:
  "As always, it's a pleasure to read every Monday's morning
  The E-Sylum.  I have noticed that The E-Sylum continuously
  contains more and more valuable information.  Just a one
  word: Congratulations!  Even though I'm a mexican numismatic
  literature collector I enjoy all of topics included in this
  electronic  publication.

  I would like to take advantage of this e-mail to ask for you
  help. I read in The Asylum an article in which Walter Breen
  appeared.   Could you recommend to me a publication that
  contains a biography of this numismatic scholar?"

  [See "American Numismatic Biographies" by NBS President
  Pete Smith, (Gold Leaf Press, 1992).  Some highlights:  Breen
  was born September 5, 1930 in San Antonio, Texas. He was
  abandoned and adopted; He entered the Air Force in 1946,
  using a phony birth certificate.   He met Wayte Raymond in
  1950.  Raymond hired him to do numismatic research in the
  National Archives.   The entry goes on to include a list of
  his employment affiliations and publications.   -Editor]


  Paul Withers writes: "A heart-felt plea, but it is almost
  surely too late.   I read with horror your item:
  "Volume 1, Number 1 of American Numismatic Society
  Magazine has appeared."

  Why, oh why Volume 1  Number 1 ?

  Why don't the people who get these ideas learn that
  numbers are (a) sequential and (b) unique, so only ONE
  number is necessary for identification ?

  You might wonder why I am concerned enough to write
  about this - well, as a cataloguer of books for sale,  I have
  to deal with journals of various societies.  The one that I
  hate most is the Journal of the Society of Antiquaries of
  Scotland.  The society's Journal has issue and volume
  numbers.   Then it got late, and out of phase and several
  issues were bundled together - thus, to identify one that
  you want, with absolute accuracy you have to give the
  issue number, the volume number, the date of publication
  and the year when it should have been published.  All of
  this is incredibly confusing - and all because a wazzock
  who thought that they'd make their journal look posh and
  give it two numbers when only one was really necessary.
  Now you have to quote four numbers to be absolutely sure
  that you are giving the client what he needs.

  Those who collect communion tokens will know what I
  mean !"


  I pity major coin dealers and societies for the endless
  barrage of stupid questions that arrive from the public by
  phone and email.   Here's one that came through my own
  web site:

  Subject line:  "reason penny is copper and all others are
  silver. (for a college assignment)"

  Text:  "I need to give the reason why and I heard that it
  is because of the following:  Lincoln betrayed the Americans
  by freeing slaves, therefore all coins are silver and the penny
  is copper, facing the opposite direction of the other coins,
  and is the lowest worth."

  My first inclination was to ask which college the writer
  was attending so I could be sure not to send my own kids
  there.   But out of curiosity I did a web search looking for
  decent information on the history of the cent.  I found two
  things of interest.

  The first is a decent 1999 article  by Gerald Tebben in
  The Columbus Dispatch, including quotes from ANS
  Curator Alan Stahl.  But I'm not sure of the accuracy
  of Stahl's last comment, that Victor David Brenner
  "sunk back to poverty."

  The second items are from a pro-cent lobbying group.
  The slant is naturally bias, but the basic facts seem
  correct, and the pages are nicely laid out.


  David F. Fanning, Editor-in-Chief of our print journal, The
  Asylum, writes: "Your comments on the article on Albert
  Richardson and the Civil War which appeared in the latest
  Rare Coin Review made me remember a question I've been
  meaning to ask the E-Sylum's consortium of online experts for
  some time:

  Are there any numismatic publications, no matter how
  insignificant, which were published in what was the
  Confederate States of America during the war years?
  The Civil War in the United States happens to
  chronologically coincide with the beginnings of the
  numismatic hobby in this country. Any ideas, anyone?"


  David Lange writes: "I remember that after Jack's death an
  effort was made to publish his book through voluntary
  contributions.  As with most such calls, the results were
  disappointing, and nothing more was heard. I believe Michael
  Hodder was the driving force behind this quest."

  The grass-roots efforts weren't for naught.  NBS Board
  member P. Scott Rubin writes: "About Jack Collins book
  on 1794 Dollars, George Kolbe is working on getting the
  book published,  I am working on updating the list of 1794
  Dollars.  If anyone has any recent information (i.e.. last 5
  years) about recently discovered 1794 dollars or know the
  present ownership of known 1794 dollars the help would be
  greatly appreciated."


  In response to the item about the International Bank Note
  Society lending its library to the American Numismatics
  Association library, Geoff Bell writes: "Thought you might be
  interested to know that the Canadian Paper Money Society
  donated its library to the Canadian Numismatic Association
  Library several years ago with the arrangement that CPMS
  members could access the CNA Library even though they
  may not be CNA members. IBNS, then, is not the first to
  do this."


  From a June 3, 2002 article in the Financial Times:
  "Framed on Jack McMaster's wall is one of his proudest
  possessions: a stock certificate for shares in KPNQwest,
  the Dutch data network operator.

  The company's president and chief executive paid $500,000
  for it two years ago; today it is worthless.

  For the past month staff had worked without pay in what
  ultimately proved a fruitless effort to keep the cash-starved
  telecoms carrier alive. On Friday, lacking funds, shareholder
  support and a saviour, it went bust.  Founded in November
  1998 and worth 40bn ($37bn)  at its peak two years ago,
  it will be broken up and sold for next to nothing.

  A 25,000km glass-fibre backbone, stretching from Ireland
  to Romania and Spain to Finland, is to be shut down within
  less than three months."


  Last week we mentioned Mark Van Winkle's article in
  the June 3, 2002 Coin World on "The Last Double Eagle"
  which pictures a printing of the executive order recalling
  "all gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates."

  Mark Van Winkle writes: "The Gold Recall Announcement
  in my article is a reproduction of an original 11 x 17
  broadside.  These were distributed to post offices throughout
  the nation in 1933.  I got the item from Barney Marus, who is
  the head of Heritage's Tangible Investment Division.  When he
  first had these reproduced some twenty years ago, he sent a
  copy to one of his clients who worked in a post office.  Just for
  grins he put his copy up on the bulletin board along with the
  wanted posters, etc.  One day a lady came in, who must have
  been at least 80 years old.  She looked the poster over very
  carefully and then exclaimed, "Oh damn! Not again!"


  This week's featured web site is Roy Davies' listing of
  "General Sources on Monetary History".

Wayne Homren
Numismatic Bibliomania Society

Content presented in The E-Sylum is not necessarily researched or independently fact-checked, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the 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.  Visit the Membership page. Those wishing to become new E-Sylum subscribers (or wishing to Unsubscribe) can go to the following web page link.

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