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The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit association devoted to the study and enjoyment of numismatic literature. For more information please see our web site at


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To join, print the application and return it with your check to the address printed on the application. Print/Digital membership is $40 to addresses in the U.S., and $60 elsewhere. A digital-only membership is available for $25. For those without web access, write to:

Charles Heck, Treasurer
Numismatic Bibliomania Society
P. O. Box 2058,
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Content presented in The E-Sylum is not necessarily researched or independently fact-checked, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


Wayne Homren 2017-03-15 full New subscribers this week include: Nicolas Gimbert, courtesy of Martin Kaplan; Franklin Nussbaum, courtesy Laurence Edwards; Julie Salmon, courtesy Chris Salmon; and Grant Hammersberg. Welcome aboard! We now have 6,641 subscribers.

Thank you for reading The E-Sylum. If you enjoy it, please send me the email addresses of friends you think may enjoy it as well and I'll send them a subscription. Contact me at anytime regarding your subscription, or questions, comments or suggestions about our content.

This week we open with two numismatic literature sales, a new book, an update from the Newman Numismatic Portal, and more.

Other topics this week include 20-cent pieces, the PAN show, edge lettering, Denis Loring, Ed Fuhrman, Lianna Spurrier, new enterants in the numismatic market, ANA exhibits, online numismatic fora, ancient coins, the 1969-S doubled die cent, a circumcision medal, BitCoin ATMs, and hybrid crypto-banknotes.

To learn more about Michigan Mining Scrip, Richard S. Yeo, David Proskey, influence in numismatics, Guadalupe's Basilica, coin boards, the Victoria Proof Gothic Crown, Victor David Brenner, Secretary Yellen's currency displays, and the squirting nickel, read on. Have a great week, everyone!

Wayne Homren
Editor, The E-Sylum


Here's a final reminder of this week's Kolbe & Fanning numismatic literature sale, along with another great group of highlights. There's important material here - review the catalog carefully. -Editor


Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers are holding our Sale 160 on this Saturday, May 22, 2021. Featuring additional material from the library of Richard Margolis, along with properties belonging to several other consignors, the 459-lot auction offers books, catalogues and periodicals covering the gamut of numismatic topics, from antiquarian volumes to standard current works.

Some highlights of the sale include:

Read more here

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The June 2021 Bertolami Fine Arts E-Auction 100 includes over 300 lots of numismatic literature. Here are some selections. -Editor

Lot 1862 Catalogo della collezione numismatica Lot 1890 L'oro e la legge
Lots 1862 and 1890

Lot 1862: AMBROSOLI S. - Museo provinciale di Catanzaro. Catalogo della collezione numismatica. Monete medioevali e moderne, medaglie, ecc. Catanzaro, 1891. pp. 226, lotti 612+297+89+15. Raro

Lot 1890: ASCANI O. - CARPENZANO G. - L'oro e la legge. Commercio, esportazione, importazione, aspetti amministrativi, tributari, valutari. Milano, 1982. Pp. 443, 12 tavv. Col

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John and Nancy Wilson submitted this article about a new book on Michigan Mining Scrip. Thanks! -Editor

MICHIGAN MINING SCRIP, Paper of the Northern Michigan Copper and Iron Mining Districts,
by Judith Haskins Davis, David H. Gelwicks and Chester L. Krause, 2021

Michigan Mining Scrip book cover Published by: David H. Gelwicks Publishing, Monroe, Michigan,

Reviewed by: John and Nancy Wilson, NLG

This wonderful and well-done reference has been in production for many years and was originally started by collector and publisher Chester Krause (1923-2016) who collaborated with Copper Harbor, Michigan historian and collector Judy Davis. About ten years later Michigan Tech Alumnus Dave Gelwicks, joined the project to bring this reference to completion. Mr. Gelwicks dedicates the reference to Judy Davis and in memory of Chet Krause. On one of the pages Clifford Mishler does an "In Memory of Chet" and quoting him, Personally, I’m particularly delighted to see this land-breaking and comprehensive study embracing the consequential 19th century scrip issues from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula come to fruition.

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Dennis Tucker of Whitman Publishing passed along this article by Barbara Gregory about her work on the new book by Ken Bressett on R.S. Yeoman and the Red Book. Thanks! -Editor

The latest Whitman Publishing book by Kenneth Bressett will debut in summer 2021. A Penny Saved: R.S. Yeoman and His Remarkable Red Book celebrates the life of Bressett’s mentor, hobby legend Richard S. Yeo (known as R.S. Yeoman), and the longevity of his Guide Book of United States Coins (the Red Book), first published in 1946. The 352-page hardcover volume will be available from bookstores and hobby shops and online (including at, and in the meantime is available for preorder. Here, Barbara J. Gregory, who assisted Bressett on A Penny Saved, describes her work on the complex manuscript.

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The latest addition to the Newman Numismatic Portal is a video talk on the 20-Cent piece. Project Coordinator Len Augsburger provided the following report. Thanks. -Editor

1875-CC 20-cent reverse die Recently added to Newman Portal is a video of the Liberty Seated Collectors Club (LSCC) Zoom meeting held May 11. Most clubs are seeing increased meeting attendance with virtual formats, and the LSCC is no exception, drawing over fifty attendees to this meeting.

With one-click recording, the preservation of this content is simple, and LSCC has elected to share meeting videos externally. This event featured John Frost speaking on 20-cent pieces, all the way from the related legislation to the cataloging and collectability of interesting varieties. Frost, and Lane Brunner, are the authors of the standard work on the series, Double Dimes: The United States Twenty-cent Piece.

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Publication of the Coin World list of The Most Influential People in Numismatics brought forth a number of comments both here and elsewhere. Coin World Managing Editor Bill Gibbs submitted this response. -Editor

How are the Most Influential A response to the observations on Coin World’s Most Influential publication

Ever since Coin World published its The Most Influential People in Numismatics supplement to our May monthly issue, our editors, sales representatives and customer service staff have been bombarded with email and phone calls from readers and advertisers. Many of our customers praised the publication; some wanted additional copies to keep and share; and others were critical of omissions (Why isn’t he on the list? and Why am I not on the list?). Most, however, at least recognize the monumental effort required by the Amos Media Company to produce and publish the publication.

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Jud Petrie's Magic Token Research
Jud Petrie writes:

"I am an avid collector of magic tokens. I was approached a number of years ago to update the Kuethe reference, which I worked on diligently for many years. I then heard that someone else was doing the same thing so I dropped my research efforts as 'I would rather buy his book than write mine'. Nothing was published and I was again approached, and again, I started. I heard that the book was supposed to come out in November, which also came and went without publication.

Magic Tokens book cover "I then became acquainted with Bob Olson, wrote to him, phoned him, attended one of his Colonial era magic shows, and bought many, many tokens from him. As it turns out, we had a number of mutual friends in the magic community. He was the one that was supposedly writing the update. I continued to write in depth articles about the issuers of magic tokens, one was recently published in TAMS titled 'Chicago Magic Bar Tokens'. I had by then become acquainted with Paul Courville and have had many pleasant transactions with him. At this point I would have to say that I am glad that I bought his book because it was better than anything I could have written. Maybe some day I will publish my 'in-depth' research, which continues to this day."

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Other topics this week include Coin Boards, Guadalupe's Basilica marriage token, the Big Boy Coin, and the squirting nickel. -Editor

Read more here


Readers have had nothing but great things to say about the recent Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists (PAN) show near Pittsburgh. The market continues to grow in strength and draw in new and returning collectors. -Editor


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Here's another entry from Dick Johnson's Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Terminology. It's an interesting but lengthy one, so we'll save more for later issues. -Editor

Edge Lettering and Numbering. Marking of any kind – letters, symbols, figures or ornaments – which is placed on the edges of numismatic or medallic items to add decoration, security or additional information about an item. This information may include such data as the identity of the artist, issuer or maker (often in the form of initials, hallmark or logo), the fineness, composition, serial numbering, maker's location, size of edition, copyright, data omitted from the design, the recipient's name or a variety of other facts or symbols.

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Here's more from the David Prosky entry from the online draft of John Lupia's book of numismatic biographies. This is an excerpt with the full article and bibliography available online. -Editor

3. Third Period - 1886 -1887 - The Calman Brothers Syndicate - Scott Stamp & Coin Company, Ltd.

From 1885 to 1887 he published a series on Pattern Pieces based on the work of Robert Coulton Davis in Scott's Coin Collector's Journal.

In 1886, the Proskey Brothers circulated a round brass rimmed cardboard check which they purchased from some unidentified manufacturer. Around the rim printed THIS CHECK IS GOOD FOR/ FIVE CENTS, and second variety reads TWENTY-FIVE CENTS. They handstamped with violet ink a rubber stamp PROSKEY BROS. / MERCHANDISE/ AND SHINGLE MILL/ SILVER SPRINGS, FLA. (See E-Sylum, Vol. 17, No. 4, January 26, 2014, report on ANA Hall of Fame author David Schenkman's article published in The Numismatist)

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Last week's Heritage press release discussed only one of the two recipients of the Herbert Silberman Award by the Early American Coppers Club (EAC). Thanks to Bill Eckberg for providing this text from the club's Penny-Wise publication. -Editor

Denis Loring The Herbert Silberman Award (President’s Award) is EAC’s highest honor and is typically presented to indi- viduals who have shown exceptional service to their fellow EAC members and to numismatics in general. Only a few individuals have previously received this award:

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We recently discussed Ed Fuhrman's new book on Half Cents. Now there's an article about him in the North Jersey Record. -Editor

Ed Fuhrman with guitar and book

When heavy metal guitarist Ed Fuhrman hits the road, one of his priorities is seeking out a local collector's shop. Is he looking for a vintage guitar or a hard-to-find record?

No. He's looking for coins.

"I've been playing guitar since I was 10 and teaching guitar since I was 15, but I've been interested in coins since I was 5," Fuhrman said. "I have yet to meet any fellow rockers at a coin show. Quite often, I'm the youngest guy at these events by 10 or 15 years, and I'm 53."

Worried that the art of coin collecting might become lost if not taken up by younger generations, the Dumont resident and New Milford native recently published "The Half Cent Handbook: Draped Bust Varieties 1800-1808." Released in January, it's geared toward beginners, especially young people.

Read more here

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The May 2021 issue of The Clarion (edited by Rich Jewell for the Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists) includes a nice interview with Lianna Spurrier. With permission, here's an excerpt. -Editor

Lianna Spurrier Lianna Spurrier
Lianna started collecting over 10 years ago and started working in the field professionally in 2018. She’s the creative director for Numismatic Marketing and is also an avid collector who’s in the process of researching for a book about Japanese bar money. 1. When and why did you become a coin collector? When I was little, I got foreign coins from the Tooth Fairy instead of spending money. I kept them all in a ceramic bank and called myself a coin collector, but I didn’t really know anything about them.

When I was 11, my parents cleaned out a relative’s house who was a hoarder. I got to go with them and was oddly excited about spending my Saturday’s inside a musty old house with rubber gloves and face masks in August, but it was like a treasure hunt to me. We found a few little stashes of coins tucked away – a jar of wheat pennies here, a metal tin with a Seated Liberty half dollar there – and, since I already thought of myself as a coin collector, I asked to keep them.

Read more here


This press release announces a new high-end dealer in numismatic rarities. -Editor

MS Rau numismatic offerings

Internationally recognized antiques dealer M.S. Rau is pleased to announce its expansion into a fascinating product category: numismatics, which includes rare gold coins, silver dollars, ingot and federal notes.

The New Orleans-based gallery’s numismatic collection will focus on the most elusive and prestigious coins and banknotes known, including the rarest Early Date specie, ancient gold pieces and shipwreck ingots. Among the initial offerings are such scarcities as an 1880 $4 Coiled Hair Stella (Proof), as well as a one-of-a-kind collection of six gold coins from the S.S. Central America Shipwreck.

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The numismatic dealer field isn't only expanding from the high end. This NGC press release announces the entry of a major dealer from the sports card world. -Editor

1943_Bronze_1C_MS62_BN_BeyerDiscovery_6209946-001_lg Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®) has certified one of the finest examples of the famed 1943 Bronze Cent, an elusive mint error highly prized by coin collectors. The coin was submitted by Dave & Adam's Card World, a powerhouse in the world of collectible sports cards. In order to save copper for the war effort during World War II, the US Mint was supposed to strike all 1943 Lincoln Cents on zinc-coated steel planchets. However, a few bronze planchets from 1942 are believed to have been lodged in the tote bins that were used by Mint employees to carry the unstruck planchets to the presses that struck the coins. These stray bronze planchets later worked themselves loose, mixing with the steel planchets used to strike the cents.

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We haven't exactly seen fistfights break out among coin buyers, but the sports card market is so hot people are brawling to grab the latest offerings at big-box stores. The Washington Post reports that Target is suspending card sales following a donnybrook in in Wisconsin. -Editor

Sports card packs Target says it’s done with trading cards — at least for the time being — after a dispute outside one of its Milwaukee-area stores escalated into violence and multiple arrests.

A spokesman for the retail giant said in a statement that it will stop selling MLB, NFL, NBA and Pokémon cards in stores on Friday out of an abundance of caution, but that they’ll still be available online.

The company declined further comment.

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In a recent email Sovereign Rarities reviewed several lots consigned to their planned Auction 4. The lots are still being catalogued, but here are images of some pieces that caught my eye. -Editor

1651 Commonwealth Gold Unite
1651 Commonwealth Gold Unite

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Paul Hybert submitted this information about exhibits at this summer's American Numismatic Association convention. Thanks. -Editor

ANA exhibit area

It is good to see that the ANA will meet in August in Rosemont, and that The E-Sylum is spreading the information.

The main webpage for the convention is which was listed in the last E-Sylum. Near the top of the page is a bullet-list of links for some aspects of the show -- farther down the page is a grid of graphics for more aspects of the convention. Near the bottom is the "EXHIBIT INFORMATION" graphic which is a link to information on the Collector Exhibit Area.

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Yosef Sa'ar passed along this information about the upcoming International Token Web Conference. Thank you! -Editor

International Token Web Conference

International Token Web Conference
22-23 May 2021

The International Token Web Conference is back.

The past year was hard on everyone and we all deserve a full weekend of token-happiness. As it turns out, the online conference format was very successful and proved to be effective on getting to know new subjects and new persons, without pandemic risks or even the hassle and expenses of travel. So here we go again.

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The American Israel Numismatic Association (AINA) is offering two free Zoom talks for Jewish American Heritage Month. Here's the announcement. -Editor

Mel Wacks and Joel Iskowitz Talks Celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month

American Israel Numismatic Association logo May has been proclaimed Jewish American Heritage by every President from George W. Bush to Joseph Biden. On May 23 at 2 PM Eastern Time, Mel Wacks, President Emeritus of AINA and Director of the Jewish-American Hall of Fame will present a lecture via Zoom on Important Jewish American Medals and Coins. He will be followed by Joel Iskowitz, longtime participant in the U.S. Mint Artistic Infusion Program, where Joel designed over 50 coins and medals; he will talk about The Victor D. Brenner – Joel Iskowitz Connection and Recent Projects.

Read more here

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Here's a selection of interesting or unusual items I came across in the marketplace this week. Tell us what you think of some of these. -Editor

1779 John Paul Jones Comitia Americana Medal
1779 John Paul Jones Comitia Americana Medal

UNITED STATES. John Paul Jones (1747-1792) Medaglia 1779 (opus: A. Dupré) (56 mm.) La cattura della fregata britannica HMS Serapis da parte della USS Bonhomme Richard. Per la series "Comitia Americana". Busto in uniform verso ds. con i capelli raccolti R / L'impegno navale, HOSTIVM NAVIBVS CAPTIS AVT FVGATIS, Scontro tra vascelli. Betts 568; Adams e Bentley, cap. 8th; BHM 222, R2; MH 580; CP 105/22; Ford XIV, 203rd SPL +

From the upcoming Bertolami Web Auction 100. See the article elsewhere in this issue about numismatic literature offered in the sale. -Editor

To read the complete lot description, see:
LOT NO. 1360 - WEB AUCTION 100 (

Other topics this week include the Feuchtwanger Cent, and a Second National College Bank Note. -Editor

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Coins are mentioned but not shown in this article from The Sunday Times shared by David Sundman. -Editor

Herculaneum skeleton

Hundreds of ancient Romans fleeing the eruption of Vesuvius in AD79 were minutes away from being rescued on a boat sent by the historian Pliny the Elder when they perished, an expert has claimed.

The skeletons of 300 inhabitants of the coastal town of Herculaneum were discovered in the 1980s huddled with their jewellery on the town’s beach, killed by a tide of boiling volcanic material as they waited to be saved.

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Numismatourist Howard Berlin passed along this Jerusalem Post article about symbolism on ancient coins. -Editor

Bar-Kochba coins What do ancient coins tell us about the Omer period and the time of the Bar-Kochba revolt, when the 49 days between Passover and Shavuot became associated with death and mourning?

According to the Bible, the seven weeks between the two holidays referred to as ‘omer’ – a unit of measure which was used to quantify the amount of produce to offer as a sacrifice to God – was not meant to carry any specific connotation other than its agricultural meaning.

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OVER 500 NUMISMATIC TITLES: Wizard Coin Supply has over 500 numismatic titles in stock, competitively discounted, and available for immediate shipment. See our selection at


David Sundman passed along this BBC News article about two scholarships in classics funded by historian Mary Beard. -Editor

Mary Beard Historian Mary Beard is to fund scholarships for two disadvantaged students to study classics at Cambridge University, as a "retirement present".

The Cambridge professor is stepping down next year after almost 40 years of teaching and research.

She described the £80,000 donation as her "payback time".

"I am very conscious of what I've gained from classics, no-one from my family had a university degree," said Dame Mary.

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Nick Graver passed along this Smithsonian article about gold bracteates unearthed in Norway. Thanks -Editor

gold bracteate found in Norway In the sixth century A.D., elite individuals in southeastern Norway buried seven gold pendants in a field as a sacrifice to the gods. The artifacts, known as bracteates, feature images of Norse gods and stylized animal figures, reports Ida Irene Bergstrøm for Science Norway.

A private metal detectorist and archaeologists from Viken County discovered four of the bracteates in the municipality of Råde in 2019. The University of Oslo’s Museum of Cultural History found the other three while conducting a follow-up excavation at the site in 2020. Only one similar pendant has been found in Norway over the past 70 years, according to the archaeologists.

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The Heritage press release describes a modern rarity with an interesting backstory. -Editor

1969-S 1C Doubled Die Obverse MS64 Red PCGS. FS-101_Heritage_Auctions 1969-S 1C Doubled Die Obverse MS64 Red PCGS. FS-101_Heritage_Auctions_2

Seeing Double! Rare Doubled Die Cent Could Sell For Six Figures

Every week, our coin staff at Heritage receives multiple inquiries from hopefuls who are searching their pocket change for treasures. One such lucky consignor has entrusted a modern rarity to Heritage for sale in January: a 1969-S Doubled Die Cent! This coin has been authenticated by PCGS and certified as an amazing MS64 Red. It will be featured in the June US Coin Auction #1331.

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Federal Reserve is again limiting coin shipments to banks in response to an unexpected increase in demand. The new limits are modest compared with those set last summer, which were eased earlier this year. Is it the economy ramping up? Or have people just gotten used to not spending their change? -Editor

small change The Federal Reserve continues efforts to manage the distribution of the Federal Reserve’s coin inventory and new coin produced by the U.S. Mint in a fair and equitable manner. Our focus is on ensuring that businesses and consumers continue to have ready access to U.S. coin during the COVID-19 pandemic. To meet increased demand for coin fairly and equitably across all depository institution (DI) customers, the Federal Reserve Banks will begin to allocate coin in DI orders for dimes and quarters, beginning with orders placed for pick-up on Monday, May 3, 2021.

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This article from the Wall Street Journal is non-numismatic, but what caught my eye was in the background of the embedded video of Treasury Secretary Yellen speaking from her office. Here's a still shot. -Editor

Treasury Secretary Office Currency Displays

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Kavan Ratnatunga writes:

"Have you seen the old 9/11 conspiracy theory on US currency being extended to Covid-19 of Jackson with mask in 2020?"

I hadn't seen this one yet. The older one involves folding a note to where the image could be interpreted as showing the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center. -Editor

Jackson wearing a mask

There is absolutely no end to conspiracy theories. Be it the Bermuda triangle or the Illuminati, or for that matter, animated shows like Simpsons, which many think has predicted major events such as the election of Donald Trump as the President of the United States of America.

To some these conspiracy theories are extremely interesting while some get extremely disturbed knowing them. Though most people thrash them as useless, they do create a certain interest among a large number of people.

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Electronic money is creeping ever closer to ubiquity. One company has been rolling out BitCoin ATMs across the U.S. -Editor

Bitcoin Accepted Here sign Bitcoin of America is making a push to expand its operation in South Florida.

Its CEO, Sonny Meraban, took his plans to the city of Miami mayor with great reception.

We actually had a conversation with Mayor Francis Suarez where we saw he wanted to bring Bitcoin and crypto to the city of Miami, Meraban said.

Purchased bitcoin actually goes into a virtual wallet or app, which only the owner has access. You can transfer the virtual cash to retailers who accept crypto.

Read more here


1946–2021: CELEBRATING 75 YEARS of the RED BOOK. The 75th edition of the Guide Book of United States Coins will release next week, April 7, 2021. Preorder now to reserve your copy—online at , or call 1-800-546-2995.


Are smart banknotes, cryptoNotes and crypto bills on the way? Here's a proposal for a form of hybrid crypto-banknote straddling the physical and electronic realms. -Editor

Zepass powered by blockchain banknote As central bank digital currencies (CBDC) become reality and the use of cryptocurrencies for payments becomes more mainstream, how do we make sure these new digital monies are available to everyone, everywhere, at all times? To date, the only payment technology that can do this is cash.

The pure physicality of banknotes presents problems in the digital age. International remittances are slow, holding banknotes can be costly and problematic, and cash can impede central bank monetary policy (such as by breaking the zero lower bound in interest rates).

It seems only logical that an ideal payment instrument would combine the advantages of banknotes and digital currencies. A hybrid banknote would use a universally accepted and robust payment technology – cash – to deliver the cutting-edge benefits of digital money. A hybrid banknote – for instance, a bill with a chip embedded – could routinely function as a banknote does currently, but have the ability to access an electronic network to transfer value.

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Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor

Judging the Medal of the Year

Addressing CoinsWeekly Editor Ursula Kampmann's questions about the criteria for choosing the American Medallic Sculptors Association Medal Of the Year award, AMYA Coordinator Mel Wacks and Juror Philip Attwood explained the choice in a CoinsWeekly follow-up article this week. -Editor

Jeanne George Floyd Jeanne Stevens-Sollman’s American Medal of the Year

To read the complete CoinsWeekly article, see:
What Makes an Art Medal a Great Art Medal? (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Other topics this week include the Schuler high-performance minting press, Ceylon Banknotes, and early bank buildings. -Editor

Read more here


This week's Featured Web Site is the Cuban Numismatic Association of America (CNA)

The goal of the Association is to encourage, promote and disperse Cuban numismatic knowledge, collectible Cuban coins, currency, culture, education and fraternal relations among the numismatic community. The association is not affiliated with the Cuban Government Mint or the Association of Cuban Numismatics, based in Havana, Cuba. Our Association has active members and participants in several countries around the world who have the common interest in studying, collecting, and sharing knowledge and friendship with others about numismatics of the island of Cuba.

The Cuban Numismatic Association is a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA), Industry Council for Tangible Assets (ICTA) and Florida United Numismatists (FUN).

We are a non-profit organization and non-political. Our mission is the study of Cuban coins, banknotes, tokens, medals, bonds, casino chips, documents, collectibles and, in general, all matters relating to the numismatics of Cuba. We are registered as a not-for-profit organization under IRS Section 501(c)(3), and all dues, donations, and gifts to the Cuban Numismatic Association are fully tax deductible. Any emails, comments, questions, posts, etc. relating to political agendas will not be tolerated.

Cuban Numismatic Association logo

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