John Lupia submitted the following information from his Encyclopedic Dictionary of Numismatic Biographies for this
week's installment of his series. Thanks! As always, this is an excerpt with the full article and bibliography available online. This
week's subject is Milwaukee coin dealer A. H. Kraus. -Editor
Arthur Henry Kraus (1880-1961), was born on 29 August 1880, in Wisconsin of German immigrants, Heinrich "Henry" W. Kraus (1843-),
and Bertha Kraus (1844-1920). He was the last of four children : Ida (1872-1963), Alma (1874-), and Edward (1874-). His father came to America in
1851 and worked as a harness maker. Edward worked with his father, but Arthur entered the field of printing.
Kraus is interesting to the field of American numismatic history since he held a lifelong interest in collecting and selling coins and
stamps and printed catalogues. Numismatic bibliophiles who come across these small printed catalogues might wonder who Arthur H. Kraus
might be and how he factors into the American numismatic scene. This brief sketch was published to create a gateway to this publisher and
dealer and expand our knowledge of his publications. He began around the time of B. Max Mehl and Tom Elder, who also both dealt in coins
and published numismatic literature similar to Kraus. Yet Kraus remains obscure to us though he dealt in higher grade coins for over fifty
He ran various ads in medical journals and periodicals advertising publishing medical forms and seems to have depended on that line of
business as his main source of income treating numismatics lifelong as a sideline. His name never appears in The Numismatist as an
ANA member. The Milwaukee Numismatic Society was established on October 29, 1934. Yet we do not find Kraus as a member... He lived in
Milwaukee his entire life...
Kraus was not only an advertising agent for a printer but eventually owned his own print house sometime in 1906. He also was a dealer as
a side line printing his Official Premium Coin Catalogue and the Official Premium Coin Value Book beginning in 1906.
Kraus had strict policies regarding his mail order coin and stamp business. He only dealt in high grade specimens. For a small time
dealer he preferred to deal in higher quality coins with good fixed premiums.
On 19 September 1906 he married Sophia Anna Henricksen (1886-1943) at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1907,
he became partners with his brother-in-law Alfred E. Laudon in the firm of Kraus-Laudon Company Printers, 407-409 Chestnut Street,
Kraus coin-buying ads from Argosy and Popular Science
He was an active coin dealer into his final years and published small ads in Numismatic Scrapbook most probably since he could
not compete locally with Gimbel's Coin Department in Milwaukee. Curiously in those issues of Numismatic Scrapbook during
this period that do not have his ads as Arthur Kraus, we do find ads for Badger Coin Service. Also, in The Numismatist, December
1957 we find him listed on page 1483 as a dealer where you can order a copy of Dick Yeoman's A Catalog of World Coins.
He died on August 26, 1961 at his home 1721 West Juneau Avenue, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is buried in Graceland Cemetery, Milwaukee,
To read the complete article, see:
KRAUS, ARTHUR HENRY
Wayne Homren, Editor
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