At this year's World's Fair of Money in Chicago, I had the immense honor of visiting William Burd's impressive numismatic library. I had not originally thought I was going to be able to attend considering the fast pace of the show and was so delighted to learn that I could that I literally ran out the door (ask anyone!)
Mr. Burd has obviously spent a significant amount of time and love putting together his library, evident by the wide range of topics and exquisite condition of his books. I had the pleasure of seeing items that any library would be proud to have.
To Mr. Burd directly - Thank you so much, sir, for extending this invitation and sharing what is clearly a source of passion and pride with all of us. Hats off!
I was one of the lucky bibliophiles able to attend the tour of Bill Burd's numismatic library during the Chicago ANA. Bill provided transportation as well as ample food and drink for the event (indeed, we were all so busy looking at his books that I'm afraid the food was rather neglected). Those of us on the tour were treated to a casual inspection of Bill's considerable library, being encouraged to take books off the shelves and examine them. It was a very enjoyable afternoon.
Bill's library differs from most numismatic libraries due to its depth. While many bibliophiles choose to form a library that provides an intense focus on one or two specific numismatic areas, Bill has cast a wide net. It is a tremendous working library, with it being difficult to imagine a coin, from any part of the world and from any time period, that could not be attributed using his books. Some of the books in the library are common standard references; others are very obscure titles rarely seen and little known. The works are well-organized in an attractive yet practical setting.
This is no mere dealer's reference library, however. It is salted through with a number of rarities and other items important less for their reference value than for their bibliographical significance. I was personally pleased to see a number of wonderful books that had passed through the hands of Kolbe & Fanning and through my own earlier sales: it was like unexpectedly running across an old friend on the bourse floor.
Many thanks to Mr. Burd and I look forward to my next visit!