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The E-Sylum: Volume 3, Number 51, December 10, 2000, Article 16


This week's featured web site is recommended by NBS Board member Larry Mitchell:

"The Library of Congress has updated ‘An American Time Capsule: Three Centuries of Broadsides and Other Printed Ephemera.’ First released in 1998, the collection has had more than seven thousand additional items added to it. It's available at

A keyword search on coin* will produce 16 rarely seen broadsides on the subject!"

[Editor's note: One interesting item is Ed Cogan's "Circular letter regarding sale of coins in the Randall sale", February 2, 1869. It begins: "In Mason & Co's Magazine for last month, I find a very gassy reply to a letter of mine, commenting upon the sale of coins held in Philadelphia in October last. As I could not with propriety ask to be allowed to refer again to this subject, in our New-York Journal, I have taken this means of replying to it, to put myself right with the Collectors, by showing that I was perfectly justified in what I have said in regard to the misrepresentations of the Coins in the Randall Sale. If the Editor had taken my advice, and held his tongue about the remarks in my first letter, he would have taken a much wiser course than the one he has thought proper to adopt; and if he has been driven to this course by outside pressure, I am sorry for him; but he must not blame me for it."

Another interesting item is a printing of an April 14, 1790 letter by Thomas Jefferson "certain proposals, for supplying the United States with copper coinage"

"The Secretary of State, to whom was referred by the House of Representatives the letter of John H. Mitchell, reciting certain proposals, for supplying the United States with Copper Coinage, has had the same under consideration, according to instructions, and begs leave to report thereon as follows.

THE person who wishes to undertake the supply of a Copper Coinage, sets forth, that the superiority of his apparatus and process for coining, enables him to furnish a coinage, better and cheaper than can be done by any country or person whatever: that his dies are engraved by the first artist in that line in Europe: that his apparatus for striking the edge, at the same blow with the faces, is new and singularly ingenious: that he coins by a press on a new principle, and worked by a fire engine more regularly than can be done by hand; that he will deliver any quantity of coin, of any size and device, of pure and unalloyed copper, wrapped in paper, and packed in casks ready for shipping, for fourteen pence sterling the pound." ]

Wayne Homren, Editor

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