The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 15, Number 35, August 19, 2012, Article 2


Ray Williams forwarded several photos from the Numismatic Bibliomania Society events at the 2012 Philadelphia American Numismatic Association convention. Thanks! -Editor

Kerry Wetterstom and Steve Roach
NBS Numismatic Literature Symposium Philadelphia August 2012

NBS General Meeting Philadelphia August 2012

For a slide show of all photos, see:

American Numismatic Society Librarian Elizabeth Hahn writes:

I'm going to be working on an article for the next Asylum that will give more detail about the NBS Symposium (specifically with the idea that such a write-up could benefit those who were unable to attend, along with my own comments). Another reason for E-Sylum readers to join the NBS, since the article will only appear in the print copy of the Asylum for members! I can say here though that both the symposium and the general meeting presentations were very interesting and there was a great deal of interest generated among those in attendance, as evidenced by the many questions for the speakers.

I did want to make a quick note about something that came up in the discussion at the NBS general meeting. There were questions about the indexing of The Celator and Coin World and copies made available digitally. I thought it would be useful to mention once again that the ANS Library has actively indexed numerous numismatic periodicals, including The Celator and Coin World, and as such the online library catalog, DONUM, is an excellent tool for researchers wishing to browse items in those journals (and more).

We have more than 1,400 article records from The Celator in DONUM and more than 6,000 from Coin World! These go all the way back to the early issues from the 1960s as well. If anyone has questions about this or how to best utilize searching the catalog, please contact me at the ANS Library.

Scott Barman writes:

NBS events went well at last week's ANA convention in Philadelphia. On Thursday, about 40 people attended the symposium which was a panel discussion about "Auction Catalogs from Various Perspectives" with Kerry Wetterstrom of The Celator and Steve Roach of Coin World.

I attended part of the NBS event on Thursday at the World's Fair of Money. I am sorry I missed the first half of the meeting and the meeting the next day as I was working for part of this show. However, during the question and answer period there was a discussion on electronic publications and the issue with archiving them for long periods of time. There were good points made for paper versus electronic, but it is a subject that should be a part of NBS's agenda now and in the future as a lot of NBS.

For those who attended the seminar, I am the one who has the computer-related background who has some background knowledge of the National Archives and Records Administration's (NARA) requirements for collecting and maintaining digital records. Part of my work is to help the agencies I have worked with to build systems to support long term record retention based on NARA guidelines.

As soon as I send my check to David Sundman (I was sitting behind David at the seminar), I will be an NBS member and would like the opportunity to participate in future discussions regarding digital archiving of numismatic materials. For the moment, I have a real paper book I bought from David Fanning that I am interested in reading, especially since I have not seen it in electronic form.

David Sundman

Regarding the fundraising auction, George Kolbe writes:

As mentioned at the NBS meeting, some months ago Kolbe & Fanning came into possession of a large paper copy of the recent award-winning Joel Orosz and Len Augsburger book on the Secret History of the U.S. Mint. It is believed to be unique, and it is also an error copy. It may possibly be the only large paper copy of a numismatic work produced in the twenty-first century. Given its many special attributes (one would want to read a regular size copy anyway, given the heft), Kolbe & Fanning expect that it will be looked upon in the future as a missed opportunity by the several underbidders.

Dan Freidus writes:

George is being a bit cryptic. The error he's referring to (or, at least, the one I noticed) is that while the book is a gorgeous huge (I'd guess about 11"x15") hardbound copy of the book with the cover illustration of the original enlarged to fit the oversize binding, the interior pages all seem to be blank, making the history of the U.S. Mint even more secret in this unique copy!

Joel Orosz writes:

There are those who would say that this blank version is the best edition of the book!

What a hoot this is--and it allows me to taunt all other numismatic authors--even Dr. Maris--by saying "mine's bigger than yours!"

Picking up on Joel's expression, George Kolbe writes:

Yes, it is a Humongously Oversize Orotund Tome.

Joel responds:

I simply cannot top George's acronym--it's...well, it's a HOOT!

Dan Hamelberg writes:

Thanks for the magnificent buildup of the large paper copy of Joel and Len's BLANK BOOK on the U.S. Mint. As the proud winner of the BLANK BOOK from the recent NBS auction, I must say that all the superb accolades attributed to the Large Paper copy will most surely enhance its future status and value in the world of Numismatic Literature. I can't thank you enough.

Joel wraps up with:

It took more than a century, but at last we can say that The Coins of New Jersey is no longer the biggest book in numismatics. Dr. Edward Maris, eat your heart out! Congratulations, Dan--what a cool book to own!

That wasn't the only fun bit of hokum at the meeting. Joel Orosz writes:

Dennis Tucker donated a beautifully bound book entitled The Sketchbook and Notes of Lincoln Vanderblatt. According to Dennis's tongue-in-cheek description, Lincoln Vanderblatt is the grandson of the celebrated Archibald Vanderblatt, author of the 1911 classic numismatic reference, Good Manners for Today's Polite Coin Collector.

Lincoln's Sketchbook contains original poetry, sketches and other musings upon all manner of topics numismatic, as can be seen from the accompanying photos. The one-of-a-kind Sketchbook was the star of the NBS benefit auction, realizing $1,100 after heavy bidding competition, and clearly worth every penny!

Vanderblatt_cover_thumbnail Vanderblatt-Sketchbook_02_thumbnail

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see: REPORT ON THE 2012 PHILADELPHIA CONVENTION NBS MEETINGS (

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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