Speaking of books on U.S. Commemorative Coinage, here's an interesting item about early 20th century books on the topic.
Bruce H. Smith writes:
I purchased this book in 1988. The seller told me that it was from the library of Harold Bowen, who I understand was an authority on Michigan Scrip. Other than a reference to an ANA article on coinage of the Danish West Indies written in 1941, I've not been able to locate any information on Harry W. Rapp. A large amount of work must have gone into the book's creation, but as it's typed, I don't know how it might have been reproduced other than having a few carbon copies. The plates appear to be from Wayte Raymond catalogs. I'd be grateful for any information on the book or its author.
I don't know how Harry Rapp comes into the picture, but the American Numismatic Society published Howland Wood's book The Commemorative Coinage of the United States in 1922. I don't have a copy for comparison. The ANS published an update by David M. Bullowa titled The Commemorative Coinage of the United States 1892-1938 in 1938 (Numismatic Notes and Monographs No. 83). I have that one on my shelf, and in it Bullowa devotes the volume to Wood, who passed away that year. He writes that Wood's 1922 work was the "point of departure" for his study.
Interestingly, as shown in the image above, the title page reads as follows:
THE COMMEMORATIVE COINAGE
1892 TO 1922
REVISED AND EXTENDED
1922 TO 1939
HARRY W. RAPP
I did have a copy of the Wood monograph at one time. My best recollection was that this book was an exact copy, but I no longer have the Wood book to refresh my memory.
Perhaps Rapp was working on a manuscript unawares that Bullowa was doing the same. Can anyone tell us more about Rapp and his book?
Wayne Homren, Editor
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