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This week we open with an update from literature dealer Charlie Davis, four new books, updates from the Newman Numismatic Portal, reader comments, Loan Office Certificates, and more.
Other topics this week include bronzed copper, the future of live auctions, Robert Friedberg, Lorenzo Hatch, auction previews and results, ancient coin designs and their influence, a Civil War soldier dog tag, Euro banknote redesign, and the Salvation Army's $1,000 bill mystery.
To learn more about the Rouge Book, Lithuanian numismatics, German tokens, Library of Coins Albums, the Gold Dollar Saloon, websites for researching ancient coins, the 1922 Havana Exposition, the Floyd T. Starr collection, the Banque Provinciale du Canada, Don Rickles' medals, coelanaglyptic relief and the Matrix, read on. Have a great week, everyone!
Editor, The E-Sylum
Numismatic literature dealer Charles Davis writes:
I hadn't planned on attending shows in January, but it's shaping up to be a smaller turnout at FUN and NYINC. A number of people have canceled their plans. Even on our own street New Years celebration plans quickly went from inside to outside to canceled as the virus spread and affected more households. Here's hoping for a better rest of 2022. Stay well and stay in touch online, everyone, -Editor
Collectors of U.S. coins have the Red Book. Collectors of French coins have the Rouge Book. Here is the announcement for the latest edition of the Gadoury book on French coins. -Editor
Monnaies Françaises has been the bible for the coins of modern France since it was first published in 1973. It is now authored by Francesco Pastrone and published by Editions Victor Gadoury of Monaco. In French, it is called "Le Rouge" (The Red). It is published every two years.
The 25th edition, covering the years 1789-2021 is now available with all illustrations in color and a number of new features. Among them are many essais & pieforts with new photos - A chapter for Napoleon I (essais-Piéforts- Epreuves- Flans Brunis), All the silver and copper coins of Napoleon in Italy - A new coin from Monaco - The latest coins of the Monnaie de Paris. In addition to more pictures in high quality, the book also has more than 500 additional photos showing many close-up details.
It is now 608, full-color pages, and only $48.95. It has information on all French coins minted since the Revolution of 1789 through the current Fifth Republic in chronological order by denomination (smallest to largest), including both the circulation and collector issues of France's modern euro coins.
A new book on Lithuanian numismatics has been published. -Editor
Regional coinage on Ruthenian lands of Grand Duchy of Lithuania at the end of 14 c.
by Dzmitry Huletski, Konstantin Petrunin, Andrey Yakovlev
Great Duchy of Lithuania was on unprecedented rise in 14 c. Over one hundred years its area expanded several times thanks to annexation of former lands of Polackian duchy & Kievan Rus. Many of these lands at the brink of Lithuanian conquest were governed by members of Rurickovichs, some were more or less controlled by Golden Horde. Weakening of mongol state in late 14 century facilitated eastward expansion of GDL. And shortly afterwards local currency emissions began spreading out in former area of Juchid dang circulation. Mints may have been controlled by Hediminovichs or by members of local elites.
Coins bearing emitent's name or symbols amount to maybe less than half of such coin types, majority of coins were imitating Juchid dangs and authorization of their issue remains more or less murky. Imitational coinage allowed to fill local money supply with type of coins known to population of these areas and economical reasons may have been prevailing over political declarations especially in borderlands. Regional coinage mirrored existing monetary system, with various weight standards and ratios to Juchid dang.
Classical Numismatic Group has published a new book on Seleucid coinage by Brian Kritt. -Editor
From the author's synopsis:
"The recent publication of ancient coins found at the site of ancient Samarqand sheds remarkable new light on the little-known history of Sogdiana in the period following the death of Alexander the Great. Scholars have attempted to understand the status of this region during the period of the Seleucids and their Greek successors in Bactria, posing and unable to decide upon theories of whether Sogdiana fell under the control of these Greek dynasties.
Lacking any definitive ancient accounts, they turned to numismatics to try to decide the issue. Unfortunately, the finds of coins from the relevant period had been scant, and misunderstood. The new finds at Samarqand provide a dramatic parade of bronze coins struck at the Seleucid colony at Aï Khanoum in Bactria, spanning the entire period of the Seleucid presence in Bactria, and beyond. The succession of the known types of these coins is remarkably well represented at Samarqand, providing the first detailed picture of the relationship between Seleucid Bactria and contemporary Sogdiana.
Yosef Sa'ar writes:
Wow! Yosef provided this Google translation of the announcement. Thanks. -Editor
Dear token collectors and friends,
I wish you all the best for the New Year 2022, which has just started!
I am particularly pleased to be able to inform you today - as already mysteriously indicated - that Peter Menzel is now making his new emergency money and tokens catalog (3rd digital edition 2022) available for download free of charge on Wertmarkenforum.de.
Researcher and author Dave Lange has published an updated value guide for Library of Coins Albums. Here's a copy of his announcement. Dave can be reached at DavidWLange@outlook.com . -Editor
When I published a Check List & Value Guide for Library of Coins and Treasury of Coins albums in 2019, these albums were more commonly seen on eBay and other online sales platforms. Since that time the supply has nearly dried up, and prices are commensurately higher. This is especially true of the supposedly "common" Library of Coins albums for 20th Century coin series that are in the greatest demand.
The latest addition to the Newman Numismatic Portal is a great New Year's item about the Buffalo, NY Gold Dollar Saloon. Project Coordinator Len Augsburger provided the following report. Thanks. -Editor
Gold Dollar Saloon of Buffalo, NY Open on New Year's Day
Opening New Year's Day 1870 in Buffalo, NY, the Gold Dollar Saloon lived up to its moniker, featuring a floor and bar inlaid with thousands of gold and silver coins. Coins continue as decorative items today, featured in objects ranging from toilet seat covers to Lucite tchotchkes. Rich Kelly and Nancy Oliver researched the Gold Dollar Saloon and reported their findings in the August 2015 issue of The Numismatist. Said to have cost over a $100,000 at the time of its construction, the bar reputedly contained $50
slugs and other desiderata.
The New York Times reported on April 18, 1895 that the proprietor was
tired of selling liquor and was moving to
temperance format, following a similar movement in Chicago to make bars alcohol-free. A minor theft, not surprisingly, was reported in 1900. The contents of the Gold Dollar Saloon must surely have passed into normal numismatic channels at some point, but no mention is found on Newman Portal or other databases.
Image: Clip from New York Times, April 18, 1895, related to the Gold Dollar Saloon in Buffalo, NY
Link to The Numismatist on Newman Portal:
These are selections from the David Lisot Video Library that feature news and personalities from the world of coin collecting. David has been attending coin conventions since 1972 and began videotaping in 1985. The Newman Numismatic Portal now lists all David's videos on their website at:
Here's a television commercial for the 2022 FUN Show. -Editor
VIDEO OF THE WEEK: FUN Coin Show Commercial.
Producer David Lisot's comment: "I been doing a television commercial for the Florida United Numismatists Coin Convention for more then a decade. Each time I use images to provoke interest in the general public to make them want to find out more about numismatics by going to a coin show. The entire commercial is only thirty seconds so every word and picture is important. The voice over is done by my good friend and comic book expert John Petty. The commercial is aired on ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, and Spectrum Cable in Orlando, Florida during prime time news."
Are looking for a new hobby that combines investment, history, finances and fun? Then think about going to a
coin convention! The Florida United Numismatists are holding a coin show for collectors and investors, this Thursday through Sunday, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. Hundreds of dealers will be there to buy and sell coins and precious metals. You'll be able to purchase American gold and silver Eagles at wholesale prices. Learn about old paper money and bank notes, Attend free seminars about coin collecting. And best of all, bring any kind of coin or money for a FREE appraisal. That's right, you can find out the value of your old coins and money. You'll want to bring the whole family to the Orange County Convention Center! Attend your first coin convention. This Thursday through Sunday. Doors open daily at ten and Admission is FREE!
It's the Florida United Numismatists coin show for collectors and investors. This Thursday through Sunday, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. For more information go to: www.funtopics.com.
Mark Fox submitted this article on additional online resources for researching ancient coins. Thanks! -Editor
The recent discussions concerning online resources for researching ancient coins attracted this writer's attention. Gradually, they made him realize the need for a fuller treatment on this very important topic. Numismatic websites in general help bridge the paper page with its digital counterpart, but rarely are these powerful research tools given any attention in either format other than the occasional short note stating that a particular site exists and offers to make the numismatic world a better place in one or more ways.
Scott Miller writes:
Website visitor Marion Painter of Astoria, Oregon posed a question this week. I added the illustration of a New Hampshire Continental Loan Office Certificate from the Eric P. Newman collection. -Editor
I am writing to you in hopes that you can point me in the right direction for information regarding Loan Office Certificates. No, I do not own or am wishing to sell one - I just need to know what they are! It seems silly I know, but please have patience with me. I am a genealogist and in reading through some wills I have come across the following in an estate inventory:
One Loan Office Certificate No 1566 for 600 D__
One Loan Office Certificate No 7913 for 300 D__
More on the 1922 Havana Exposition
To read the 1922 article, see:
Facts about Sugar, Volume 15 (https://books.google.com/books?id=dDo6AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA330&dq=
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: DECEMBER 19, 2021 : Query: Cuban Medal Information Sought (https://www.coinbooks.org/v24/esylum_v24n51a11.html)
Other topics this week include Middle Names, and Chasing Rare Books. -Editor
Fred Holabird of Holabird's Western Americana Collections, LLC submitted these thoughts following Jeff Garrett's piece on the future of online auctions. -Editor
Covid was not the key mechanism of change to the Live auction business. The change came gradually, through time, as a direct result of a changing and advanced technological world.
Like Jeff, and many, many others, we lament the loss of the old fashioned live auctions with a room, or rooms, full of prospective bidders. Yes, there was often psychology involved between competing bidders. But perhaps the most important thing which Jeff and all of us older folks realize, is that auctions brought together a community of collectors. It is where we all met, let our hair down, became friends or acquaintances, grew relationships and enjoyed the camaraderie of collecting as a group. As the shows grew larger, it became impossible, as Brian noted, to leave the bourse to inspect items for auction.
Here's another entry from Dick Johnson's Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Terminology. -Editor
Relief. The three-dimensional surface that is the design on a plane other than that of a base, background or field. Relief sculpture has three dimensions, height and width are normal, but the third dimension – depth – is highly compressed. The viewer is not generally aware of the background, which is well behind, near the same, or in front of, the relief design. But what the viewer sees is the modulated relief that forms the design.
American Numismatic Biographies author Pete Smith submitted this article on Robert Friedberg. Thanks! -Editor
Many of today's veteran collectors visited their first coin shop at a large department store. For me, it was in the Dayton's Department Store in Minneapolis. These stores were affiliated with Robert Friedberg and the Capitol Coin Company.
Robert Friedberg was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on November 7, 1912. In early records his name is shown as Rubin. His parents, Harry and Sarah, were immigrants from Russia. They had another son known as Jack but in the records as Jacob. Young Robert acquired world coins from sailors who visited his father's tailor shop.
The latest article in Harvey Stack's blog series covers the auction sales of 1992. Thanks, Harvey. -Editor
1992 was a major year of auctions for Stack's. We started the year off in January with the Winter Collection, an extensive offering of United States colonial and federal coinage that included gold, silver and copper plus territorials and pattern and numbered 1,468 lots. March brought a similar outstanding collection of United States gold, silver and copper coins, plus a large and important offering of U.S. patterns. This sale of over 2,100 lots gave buyers a significant opportunity to acquire scarce and choice coins collected over several decades, many from famous pedigree collections.
In the early days the numismatic and philatelic communities were quite connected, with a large number of collectors and dealers handling both stamps and coins, and multiple periodicals covering both topics. This new article from John Lupia explores the history of the Bogert & Durbin firm, connections to Ebenezer Locke Mason, Jr., and Philatelic Monthly. Here's a short excerpt - see the complete article online at John;s NumismaticMall website. Thanks. -Editor
The firm of Bogert & Durbin that was incorporated in 1891 is a classic case of the power of branding. R. R. Bogert & Co., New York had for twenty years established a solid reputation and confidence in the global philatelic community. Durbin & Hanes, had done the same for a decade in Philadelphia. But it was four years after the death of L. W. Durbin in 1887 that Bogert & Durbin was formed with Edward Billings Hanes, as if concealing himself behind the name, became its first president. So let it be known that the firm of Bogert & Durbin was posthumous and contained no Durbin at all since he already had left this world four years before the company was formed.
Rudolphus Ritzema Bogert (1842-1907), was born on February 17, 1842, son of Rudolphus Bogert (1811-1866), and Wealthy Jane Gordon (1819-1900), New York City, New York Postage Stamp Dealer. In 1874 he was a founding member of the National Philatelic Society. He had his first office at 227 Harrison Street, Brooklyn, New York, but later in early 1882 removed to the Tribune Building on Nassau Street.
Susan Bremer published a nice article on engraver Lorenzo Hatch in the Heritage December 23, 2021 Currency News email newsletter. -Editor
Many highly sought-after notes will be available in Heritage's upcoming FUN Auction. These auctions will showcase the works of many talented engravers. One of the few engravers found in both the US and World Currency is Lorenzo Hatch. As an engraver, Lorenzo Hatch has a rich history in note design and operations with US and Chinese currency.
Lorenzo Hatch was born July 16, 1856, in Hartford, New York, and was raised in Dorset, Vermont. His interest and obvious talent in the arts led to his education at the Washington Art Students' Club. Hatch continued his artistic education with renowned American artist Robert Henri. As an artist, Hatch was accomplished not only in portrait engraving but also in watercolor. In 1874, the head of the National Bureau of Currency was impressed by Hatch's engraved portrait of George Washington and offered him an engraving position.
The January-February 2022 issue of ErrorScope had an article by Jim Zimmerman describing his experience manning the Fall PAN Show club table for the Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America (CONECA). With permission, we're republishing it here. Thanks to ErrorScope Editor Allan Anderson for passing along the files. -Editor
Here's the results press release for the Stephen Album Rare Coins Internet Auction 13. -Editor
Stephen Album Rare Coins held its Internet Auction 13 on December 6, 2021 at its offices in Santa Rosa, California. This auction continued the strong results the company has been seeing of late, with many lots realizing multiples of their pre-sale estimates. The auction comprised 500 lots of PCGS-certified world coins and had a sell-through rate of more than 90%.
Some highlights follow (prices exclude buyer's fees):
Here's the press release for World Banknote Auctions upcoming Live Sale 20. Some great notes on offer. -Editor
This week World Banknote Auctions has listed Live Sale 20, which closes on January 13, 2022, with live bidding that day at 1 PM Eastern / 10 AM Pacific. Live Sale 20 offers 477 lots from around the world, with select highlights including a strong selection of Canada, Ethiopia and Indonesia, with other highlights literally covering all corners of the globe.
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
1826 US Large Cent
Countermarked "OLD HICKORY / SPECIE WANTED"
Stamped with individual letter punches.
A true Hard Times counterstamp.
Brunk O-66. Rulau HT-84 (page 125).
In 1836, Andrew Jackson ("Old Hickory") issued the Specie Circular, which required buyers of government lands to pay in "Specie" (gold or silver coins). The result was a great demand for specie, which many banks did not have enough of to exchange for their notes. These banks collapsed. This [multiple bank collapse] was a direct cause of the Panic of 1837, which threw the national economy into a deep depression (known as the "Hard Times"). It took years for the economy to recover from the damage.
Odd single-letter punched slogans. From the eBay listings of Bob Merchant. Nearly always something interesting on offer. -Editor
To read the complete lot description, see:
1826 US Large Cent Counterstamp "OLD HICKORY / SPECIE WANTED" (Hard Times Token) (https://www.ebay.com/itm/133975526802)
Other topics this week include the Newfoundland Rutherford Brothers Token, and Don Rickles Medals. -Editor
Last month Tyler Rossi published an article for CoinWeek about the influence of ancient coin designs. Here's an excerpt - see the complete article online. -Editor
Roman Republic Anonymous moneyer. AR Didrachm (270-265 BCE) Rome mint OBV: Diademed head young Hercules with lion skin and club over shoulder. REV: She-wolf standing right, suckling Romulus and Remus. REF: Sear 24; RSC Pre-Denarius 8; Cr. 20/1; Syd. 6
History is a continuum and time moves linearly. Generally, as time progresses, artistic and cultural trends evolve and build upon each other. One perfect example is the Hellenistic influence seen in Buddhist artwork from the Gandharan province in the first century BCE. The Bactrian and other Greek kings who ruled segments of Alexander the Great's empire after his death brought significant Western artistic conventions along with their armies. These pieces of
Greco-Buddhist art are proof of an East-West exchange of ideas that has existed for almost all of recorded history.
In his latest CoinWeek Ancient Coin Series article, Mike Markowitz explores ancient coins pierce with holes. Here's an excerpt - see the complete article online for more. -Editor
Don't buy damaged coins. They will be impossible to sell. This was some of the best advice I ever got from an experienced collector of ancients.
But like most things in classical numismatics, there are exceptions.
Ancient coins were sometimes pierced with a hole, to be worn as ornaments or amulets, or to be attached to a garment, a weapon, or some other object. If a coin type is so rare that you will never be able to afford a perfect specimen, a pierced coin may be an acceptable alternative. Out of a collection of over 300 ancient gold coins, I have acquired just three pierced coins over the years, all three being scarce types and one of those was holed and plugged in antiquity.
Arthur Shippee passed along this article about a major find of forged coins. Found via The Explorator newsletter. To subscribe to Explorator, send a blank email message to: firstname.lastname@example.org. -Editor
Britain's biggest ever hoard of forged coins has been unearthed in the Staffordshire countryside.
Buried 220 years ago by notorious criminal George Fearns, it has been dug up by novice metal detectorist John McGimpsey.
The 64-year-old found the 332 fake silver coins in a field near Leek.
Research revealed they were buried in 1801 by forger George Fearns in a bid to hide the proof of his crimes.
The Washington Post published an article earlier this month about a battlefield museum's acquisition of a Union soldier's dog tag. -Editor
Private Samuel M. Weigel had already seen extensive combat by the time his veteran Union regiment reached the battlefield near Maryland's Monocacy River in July 1864.
Twenty-seven of his comrades in the 138th Pennsylvania Infantry had been killed at the Battle of the Wilderness near Fredericksburg, Va., that May, including five from his outfit, Company G.
Seven more from the regiment had been killed at the Battle of Cold Harbor outside Richmond in June.
Articles on the impending redesign of Euro banknotes didn't make the cut for earlier issues, but here's a good new article on the political minefield of Euro banknote design. -Editor
But the Austrian artist behind the original banknotes fears the redesign could spark national rivalries, something he painstakingly tried to avoid with neutral illustrations the first time around.
Now retired, Robert Kalina was working as a graphic designer for the Austrian National Bank when he won a competition in 1996 to create the artwork for the first-ever euro notes.
Rich Bottles Jr. writes:
Rich passed along this article from The Morgantown News. Thanks. -Editor
Sheldon Greenland, commanding officer of the Salvation Army of Monongalia, Marion, and Preston counties, spent his Christmas weekend off the computer and without his phone in hand. He did not realize there were questions about the annual donation of a $1,000 bill the Salvation Army has received every year since 1978.
Greenland, who has been in charge of the local organization since 2018, called WV News within 15 minutes of an article going online Tuesday morning showing that the $1,000 bill donated last week has the same serial number and unique markings as last year's donation.
Does an old aviation mystery have a connection to gold-backed banknotes? A group of Virginia adventurers thinks so. -Editor
During his research, he came across a non-fiction book by author Charles Hill titled,
Fix on the Rising Sun: The Clipper Hi-Jacking of 1938.
I thought it was an amazing story that I had never heard before, Noffsinger said.
I started going down a rabbit hole.
Almost immediately, Noffsinger changed the focus of his thesis to explore what turned out to be a mystery stretching back to before World War II — the loss of the Pan Am
Hawaii Clipper over the Pacific Ocean, with 15 souls on board.
Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor
The second Lee statue time capsule has now been found. More numismatic items are mentioned but I haven't seen any published details yet. -Editor
Conservation experts in Virginia's capital pulled books, money, ammunition, documents and other artifacts Tuesday from a long-sought-after time capsule found in the remnants of a pedestal that once held a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.
Over the course of about two hours, the team sliced open the 36-pound copper box and meticulously pried apart and documented the damp contents. The box had been tucked in a foundation cornerstone of the massive — and now mostly deconstructed — Richmond monument since 1887.
Along with several waterlogged books, pamphlets and newspapers, the box contained an envelope of Confederate money, which conservators carefully separated, and two carved artifacts — a Masonic symbol and a Confederate flag said to have be made from the tree that grew over Gen. Stonewall Jackson's original grave.
Conservators also pulled buttons, coins and Minié balls, a type of bullet used in the Civil War, from the box. A bomb squad had checked the capsule Monday, partly to make sure there was no live ammunition inside.
To read the complete articles, see:
Experts pull documents, money from Lee statue time capsule (https://news.yahoo.com/apparent-time-capsule-found-lee-162833602.html)
Confederate pride and the Chamber of Commerce: Richmond's Lee statue finally gives up its time capsule secrets (https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md-va/2021/12/28/lee-statue-time-capsule-richmond/)
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
COIN FOUND IN LEE STATUE TIME CAPSULE (https://www.coinbooks.org/v24/esylum_v24n52a12.html)
Other topics this week include Ways to Become a Better Coin Collector, and ‘In God We Trust' Legislation. -Editor