Princeton University Curator of Numismatics Alan Stahl forwarded this press release about an
upcoming talk in conjunction with their "Capping Liberty" exhibition. Thanks!
On Sunday, May 6, the Friends of Princeton University Library will sponsor a public lecture by the
noted scholar of early American coinage, Louis Jordan, entitled "Transformations in Numismatic
Iconography during the American Revolution." The talk will take place at 4 p.m. in 101
McCormick Hall on the Princeton campus. The lecture will be preceded at 2:30 by a curatorial tour
of the exhibition "Capping Liberty: The Invention of a Numismatic Iconography for the New
American Republic" by Alan M. Stahl, Princeton's Curator of Numismatics, in the Leonard L.
Milberg Gallery of Firestone Library, Princeton University.
Louis Jordan is one of the pre-eminent experts on the coinage of the early American Republic. In
addition to his many public lectures and publications on the topic, he maintains an extensive
scholarly website: "The Coins of Colonial and Early America"
Dr. Jordan is Librarian and Director of Special Collections, University of Notre Dame Libraries,
the institution from which he received his Ph.D. in Medieval Studies in 1980. He is co-editor of
and a frequent contributor to The Colonial Newsletter: A Research Journal in Early American
Numismatics, and author of John Hull: The Mint and the Economics of Massachusetts Coinage
(2002) and Lord Baltimore Coinage and Daily Exchange in Early Maryland, currently in
In his talk at Princeton, Jordan will trace the various attempts by the Continental Congress to
devise a symbol for the new Republic, including the devices of a linked chain and a sundial
invented by Benjamin Franklin, which were adopted on the 1776 Continental Currency patterns and on
the 1787 Fugio coppers. Another common motif, the circle of stars representing the colonies and
then states, appeared on the Nova Constellatio coppers and became the basis of the first United
The lecture is being held in conjunction with the exhibition "Capping Liberty," which is running
through July 8, 2012, in the Leonard L. Milberg Gallery of Firestone Library, Princeton
University. Hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, noon to 5
p.m., closed holidays.
The exhibition and its associated events are free and open to the public. A website devoted to the
exhibition, including high-resolution images of both sides of all coins on display and images from
associated books, manuscripts, and graphic arts, is online at
http://rbsc.princeton.edu/capping-liberty and will remain on the site after the close of the
exhibition. Further information can be obtained from Alan Stahl, Curator of Numismatics, at
email@example.com or (609) 258-9127.
Our website is now ready for prime-time. We've replaced all of the coin photographs and, thanks to
helpful comments from some E-Sylum readers, have made corrections to some of the text. The
website is an ongoing publication, so further comments and corrections will be greatly
To view the updated web site, see:
Wayne Homren, Editor
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