The E-Sylum:  Volume 3, Number 36, September 3, 2000, Article 2


   The present issue is the 100th  E-Sylum issued since 
   we started on September 4th, 1998.  That issue 
   began as follows: 

   "This message is being sent to members and friends of the 
   Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS).  ... 

   In a Press Release going out soon to the numismatic press, 
   we describe the purpose of the mailing list as follows: 

       Numismatic Bibliomania Society Vice President Wayne 
       Homren is collecting email addresses for NBS 
       members,  a process which began at the national 
       meeting at the Portland  ANA convention.  The 
       resulting mailing list will be used to keep members and 
       interested parties updated on NBS events and  changes 
       to the NBS web site. ... 

      A number of folks signed up at the meeting in Portland. 
      To that initial group we've added the addresses of other 
      current and former members that the Board is aware of, 
      plus a few numismatic pen pals we thought might be 

      This is intended to be a moderated, low-volume mailing 
      list, with no more than one message every week or so. 
      Its purpose and use will evolve over time - please send 
      us your comments and suggestions." 

   Well, we've come a long way since then.  The newsletter 
   didn't even have a name until the February 8, 1999 issue, 
   when we announced: 

      "These email missives are in their sixth month now, but 
      they've never had a formal name.  To remedy that 
      situation, we've decided on "The E-sylum", an obvious 
      play on our print journal "The Asylum". " 

   The NBS Board had lengthy email deliberations about the 
   name before deciding on The E-Sylum.  We voted on a 
   list of about a dozen suggestions.  I believe E-Sylum was 
   my idea, but it was my second choice - I lobbied for 
   "The Babbler", that being what members of an Asylum 
   are wont to do.  But saner heads prevailed, and The 
   E-Sylum was born. 

   That first email message went to 49 people.  Less verbose 
   announcements were also sent to the COINS and 
   BIBLIONUMIS mailing lists, as well the the Early American 
   Coppers "Region 8" mailing list. 

   By noon subscription requests began arriving from around the 
   world.   Peter Gaspar of St. Louis, MO was the first.  Jere 
   Bacharach of the University of Washington in Seattle, was 
   second, with Dr. Hubert Emmerig of Austria a close third. 
   Over the course of the Labor Day weekend another twenty 
   people subscribed, mostly from the U.S., but from as far afield 
   as Italy, Poland, and the Russian Federation.  Today we 
   have grown to 335 subscribers. 

   We've far exceeded our original expectations.  The E-Sylum 
   serves not only as a vehicle to promote NBS and serve its 
   members, but has also become a clearinghouse of sorts for 
   numismatic research.  We're a community of kindred souls 
   who work together to further our numismatic knowledge. 
   It's always gratifying to see articles, monographs, and books 
   which credit The E-Sylum and its readers with inspiration and 
   research assistance.  It is the internet serving its highest 
   purpose -  bringing together people across geographic 
   boundaries, 24 hours a day.  We're in a place that didn't exist 
   for most people just a few years ago, and now most of us don't 
   know how we ever muddled along without it. 

   I'll have to admit, I was wary of being able to come  up with 
   enough material to fill a weekly publication, although that was 
   always my goal.   It's never easy, but some issues almost 
   write themselves with the help of our readers.   So keep those 
   emails coming, folks -  you're the backbone of The E-Sylum, 
   and your editor couldn't do it without you. 

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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