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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.
New subscribers this week include: Sheridan Downey, Daniel Gerken, Thomas Sparks, Carol Tedesco, and Sven Martzinek. Welcome aboard!
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This week we open with a new numismatic literature sale, three new books, a new centenarian numismatist, updates from the Newman Numismatic Portal, reader comments, and more.
Other topics this week include treasure coins, the IAPN book awards, the NNP Symposium, money art, Mint sets, Junior coin clubs, the Celina Coin Company, CoinHub, coin hoards and detectorist finds, the Medal of Honor and the Space Medal of Honor, Short Snorters and a mysterious ancient coin.
To learn more about Greek Coins in the British Museum, the U.S. silver dollars of 1795-1798, Potosi and Lima Mint coins, Bill English, Walter Breen, Blake Alma, the 4th International Convention of Historians and Numismatists, cheesemongers, the Hambleden hoard, the Nichols hoard, Hungarian Levente medals, and short snorters, read on. Have a great week, everyone!
Editor, The E-Sylum
Kolbe & Fanning have announced their next numismatic literature sale. Another stellar offering of material, many both rare and important. -Editor
Kolbe & Fanning February 25 Sale
Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers are pleased to announce that we will be holding our next auction sale on Saturday, February 25, 2023. The sale includes a remarkable variety of rare and out-of-print works on coins, medals, and paper money from antiquity to the present, combining selections from an impressive library on world coins with further selections from the extraordinary Cardinal Collection Library.
Some highlights of the sale include:
A new book by Harry Salyards explores the history of the early Draped Bust / Small Eagle dollar. Here's the announcement. -Editor
Long regarded as a key early Federal
type coin, the Draped Bust / Small Eagle dollar has been
subject to more than its fair share of unfounded speculation and mythmaking. In this book the
author separates fact from fiction. He refutes the assertion that the Early Dollars of the United
States were deficient in silver, uncovers the real reason for their export to the Caribbean in the
1790s (clarifying the real nature of the oft-quoted
exchange for Mexican 8 Reales), refutes
the myth of Gilbert Stuart's involvement in the Draped Bust design—giving credit, instead, to
John Eckstein, whose 3-dimensional wax models were the basis for Robert Scot's designs of
October 1795—and presents reliable evidence, in the form of actual PCGS population counts by
variety, of the surviving numbers of each—totals significantly lower than those proposed by
Bowers in 1993. A suggested total mintage for the series is similarly calculated, and the change
to the Heraldic Eagle reverse is put into the historical context of the undeclared war with
France in the spring of 1798. An updated list of the finest known examples is presented for each
die marriage, and all major die states are illustrated for the first time. Finally, he has provided a
Collecting Quality feature for each variety, suggesting ways in which the knowledgeable
collector may assemble an impressive array of these truly rare coins without spending a fortune
in the process. These pieces are written in the spirit of his Editor's Introductions to Penny-Wise,
for which he has received multiple awards from the Numismatic Literary Guild.
A new book by Carol Tedesco discusses the treasure coins of the Nuestra Señora de Atocha and the Santa Margarita. -Editor
Treasure Coins of the Nuestra Señora de Atocha and the Santa Margarita, the 2022 Anniversary Edition, provides detailed information about the silver reales
treasure coins recovered from Florida's 1622 fleet shipwrecks, including what the coins look like when first discovered, how they are cleaned, conserved, and graded, what they were worth in the 17th century, the meaning of the various markings, how to identify a coin's mint of origin, and the names and periods of office of the assayers who were responsible for guaranteeing coins of legal weight and purity and whose initials were mandated to be stamped on them. The 2022 edition significantly expands on the 2010 edition, with added back-stories on the founding of the minting houses, more historic images, and the most current assayer identity and timeline information available to date for the Potosi, Lima, and Mexico City mints, from their openings up until 1622, including extensive source citations.
A second book by Carol Tedesco discusses the Potosi and Lima Mint Coins. -Editor
Untangling the Record—A Contemporary Review of Potosi and Lima Mint Coins and Assayer History from the Mint Openings up to 1622 is a second edition printing of a paper researched and written by Carol Tedesco and presented at Cartagena MMXXI —The 3rd International Convention of Historians and Numismatists, held in December of 2021 in Cartagena, Colombia.
Some years previous to the discovery of the Atocha and Santa Margarita shipwrecks, a prominent expert in the field of Spanish Colonial numismatics incorrectly attributed the coins of early Potosi assayers R, M, L, and B to the Lima mint (and also C to La Plata), errors that were widely perpetuated for years by others citing his work. With the support of several of Latin America's most prominent archival historian/numismatists, Carol Tedesco has meticulously disentangled the evidence, deconstructed the errors, and updated the record, providing the most current assayer identity and timeline information available today, complete with extensive source citations.
Last October, Steve Woodland reviewed Serge Pelletier's new book Numismatics for Everyone. This announcement from Lighthouse Publications notes that it has now been short-listed for IAPN book of the year. Congratulations. -Editor
Pelletier's Numismatics for Everyone short-listed for International Association of Professional Numismatists' Book of the Year Award
Serge Pelletier's Numismatics for Everyone = La numismatique pour tous has been short- listed for the prestigious Book of the Year award of the International Association of Professional Numismatists
(IAPN). It is one of the 15-20 books that will be considered by the members of the IAPN at the upcoming general assembly in June.
Since 1982, the members of IAPN have been awarding the title of
Book of the Year to a book published on
numismatics during the previous year. Past winners include:
Ontario Numismatic Association President Sean Sinclair passed along this message about the 100th birthday of Bill English. Thanks, Happy Birthday! -Editor
On Saturday, February 4, 2023, Mr. Bill English, a founding member of the ONA, Waterloo Coin Society, and active member of both, turned 100 years old. In celebration of this extraordinary man, who is an integral part of both clubs, the ONA, in cooperation with the family, hosted a special birthday gathering on Sunday, February 5, 2023.
The event was held in conjunction with the Paris Coin Show, held at the Paris Fairgrounds, 139 Silver Street, Paris, Ontario. Many people dropped by, wished Bill happy birthday, and signed the guest book. There were photographs of Bill through the years, both with his family and his numismatic family.
Applications are being accepted for the 2023 Newman Grants from the Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society. Here's the press release. Previous recipients have made excellent contributions to numismatic research. What great project do YOU have in mind? -Editor
Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society Invites Applications for Newman Grants
The Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society (EPNNES) announces the opening of the application period for the 2023 Newman Grant program. Newman Grants are designed to financially assist numismatic authors and organizations pursuing original research in American numismatics. This program was launched in 2019 and supports research projects related to colonial numismatics, U.S. federal coinage, counterfeit detection, and other areas.
Authors, researchers, and numismatic organizations are encouraged to apply for amounts between $1,000 and $5,000. Awards may be applied toward related research costs including but not limited to photography, reproduction of research material and graphic art services, database access fees, and travel. Electronic publications will be preferred as EPNNES wishes to direct funds toward expenses specifically related to numismatic research, rather than the print publication of research. Newman Grant awardees agree to non-exclusive publication of their research on the Newman Numismatic Portal (NewmanPortal.org). EPNNES intends to make approximately half a dozen grants in 2023.
The NNP Symposia are highlights of the numismatic year, bringing great speakers direct to you via Zoom. Be sure to plan for the next one, which adds an in-person option. Here's the announcement. -Editor
The Newman Numismatic Portal (NNP) Symposium is back for our next event with a new round of speakers this April! Sponsored by the Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society (EPNNES), the entire event remains free and virtual, open to anyone to attend. New this spring, you can also attend in person at Central States.
Whether virtual or in person, join us on April 27-29 for a great group of numismatic presentations.
The David Lisot Video Library on the Newman Numismatic Portal can be found at:
We highlight one of his videos each week in The E-Sylum. Here's one from 1986 interviewing controversial hobby figure Walter Breen. -Editor
Here's some more money art, beginning with images Tony Terranova submitted of two Victor Dubreuil works. Beautiful - thanks! -Editor
Dansco Albums Wanted
Justin Hinh writes:
"I recently joined the NBS. I am a massive fan of Dansco albums and their history. I am creating a preservation project to collect one of each Dansco ever produced to preserve for future generations. Here is my current collection! I have been struggling to find certain albums and fellow NBS members seem perfect to know where I can find them"
The late David Lange would be thrilled with the project, and I encourage E-Sylum readers to help if they can. -Editor
Readers can reach me at my email firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with me on Instagram and see more detailed posts from my collection: https://www.instagram.com/dansco_dude/.
To see Justin's collection:
To see his want list:
Buying: Odd, Foreign, Out of Print, or Custom Dansco Albums (https://forums.collectors.com/discussion/1086346/buying-odd-foreign-out-of-print-or-custom-dansco-albums)
Other topics this week include coins in movies, and Contemporary Circulating Counterfeits. -Editor
Augi Garcia passed along this announcement from the Sociedad Numismática Dominicana (Dominican Numismatic Society) about the upcoming Santo Domingo 2023 International Convention of Historians and Numismatists. Thank you! -Editor
4th International Convention of Historians and Numismatists announces call for research papers
The 4th International Convention of Historians and Numismatists—Santo Domingo MMXXIII—set to be held from June 28 through July 2, 2023, in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, has announced a call for research papers.
Papers must be previously unpublished and address Ibero-American or World numismatic history, including coins, medals, banknotes, bonds, tokens, oaths, and vouchers, etc., and may be submitted in English or Spanish.
Here's another entry from Dick Johnson's Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Terminology. I added an image of a 1962 U.S. Mint set. -Editor
A group of related coins, usually of different denominations of the same issue, packaged and sold by the mint that manufactured them or their sales agency. The packaging takes on a certain cachet that makes such set an official issue. The coins, any number from two upwards, are usually uniform as to finish or condition, most often of mint state (uncirculated). Thus mint sets differ from proof sets (see proof surface), and from assembled sets which can be the same issue coins but brought together at a later time. The coins in mint sets are usually of uniform toning in contrast to those in assembled sets (it is said that coins in assembled sets have not
traveled the same road together and therefore may possibly have different toned surfaces).
E-Sylum Feature Writer and American Numismatic Biographies author Pete Smith submitted this follow-up article on Junior Coin Clubs. Thanks! -Editor
Last week I asked about the first junior coin club. I still don't know the first but I know it was not my local club.
The first meeting of the New York Junior Numismatic Club was on February 19, 1924, with four prospective members present. Typical attendance was six. After two years the name was changed to the Long Island Numismatic Association. The club was active into 1932.
In 1925 there was a junior coin club associated with Central High School in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Pete Smith also submitted this great article on the Celina Coin Company and its founders. Thank you! -Editor
Perhaps a good place to start the story of the Celina Coin Company is with the family patriarch, Edmund Hugo Brandts (b. 3/27/1879 d. 2/11/1932), a/k/a Emil Edmund Brandts. He was born in Gladbech, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany and came to America on November 18, 1903, at age 24. He was a partner in the Mersman Brothers Brandts Furniture Company incorporated in 1906 in Celina, Ohio. He left the partnership to form the Celina-Maid Furniture Company and the Brandts Furniture Company.
Edmund married Lillie Mary Hirsch (1882-1959) on June 6, 1905. They had four sons and a daughter. All except the daughter are buried at the North Grove Cemetery in Celina, Ohio.
We've discussed other young dealers and social media feeds before, but I don't believe we've mentioned Blake Alma's CoinHub. Here's some background from a recent press release. -Editor
CoinHub is an online coin shop for coin collectors and enthusiasts. Collectors can sell and purchase their collections on CoinHub's website. CoinHub is based in Cincinnati, Ohio. It is the internet's most prominent social profile of coin collectors.
CoinHub was founded by 22-year-old Blake Alma when he was 19. Before being a social media personality, Blake was a television host, radio host, award-winning writer, and author. He has made it his mission to spread knowledge about the value of Numismatics among the people of his generation. This led to the creation of CoinHub.
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
1797 Cheesemonger Counterstamp
1797 British Cartwheel Penny
Countermarked "R. SAVAGE / CHEESEMONGER / 28 WHITE CHAPEL"
The name is stamped in an arc.
Richard Savage was in business at this address in London during the 1830's.
Richard Savage, Wholesale Cheesemonger, 28 Whitechapel High Street, 1834-38.
Scott 22.53 (p.81).
Where else would I have the chance to use the word "cheesemonger" in The E-Sylum? A neat counterstamp from the eBay offerings of Bob Merchant. -Editor
To read the complete lot description, see:
1797 British Penny, Counterstamp "R. SAVAGE / CHEESEMONGER / 28 WHITE CHAPEL" (https://www.ebay.com/itm/134429526868)
Other topics this week include an 1814 Russia Alexander Jeton, the Confederate Half Dollar restrike, and a Valentine, Nebraska National Bank Note. -Editor
Here's a happy group of metal detectorists celebrating their find of the "Hambleden Hoard" of medieval coins. -Editor
A group of amateur detectorists are celebrating after their unlikely find of 600 medieval coins was declared treasure.
The haul – believed to be the biggest found in decade – is worth £150,000.
While not numismatic, this Guardian article describes an amazing metal-detecting find. Thanks to Pablo Hoffman for passing this along. Just in time for Valentine's Day, it's a heart-shaped early Tudor gold pendant. -Editor
Charlie Clarke had been metal detecting for just six months when he stumbled across what he calls his
once in a lifetime – no, once in 30 lifetimes, find. He was exploring a Warwickshire field, turning up
junk and about to call it a day, when a clear beep on his detector led him to dig to the depth of his elbow. What he saw there caused him to shriek
like a little schoolgirl, to be honest. My voice went pretty high-pitched.
What the Birmingham cafe owner had discovered was a huge and quite spectacular early Tudor pendant and chain, made in gold and enamel and bearing the initials and symbols of Henry VIII and his first wife, Katherine of Aragon.
Dan Sedwick passed along this Ancient Coin Collectors Guild article by Keith Twitchell about the latest regulatory threats to the hobby. -Editor
After watching the most recent meeting of the Cultural Property Advisory Committee, it's easy to draw the conclusion that coins – and coin collectors – are collateral damage in the battle over importation of culture and historical artifacts in general.
The Committee met in open session on January 30, 2023 to consider Memorandums of Understanding relating to proposed import restrictions on cultural goods with three countries: Cambodia, North Macedonia and Uzbekistan. The latter two would be new agreements, while the Cambodia proposal would extend and expand a current MOU. The meeting's purpose was to receive public input on these documents.
A Stack's Bowers blog article by Chris Bulfinch discusses operations of the Charlotte Mint under the control of the Confederate States of America. -Editor
Coining operations did not immediately cease after the Confederate States of America seized the Charlotte Mint on April 20, 1861. Confederate troops occupied the building, turning it into a military headquarters and forcing employees to swear loyalty to the Confederacy or lose their jobs. The building hosted federal troops for a period during Reconstruction, and the facility later functioned as an Assay Office.
Experts think that 887 gold half eagles were struck in late May 1861 after the mint was seized. Unfortunately for collectors, these are indistinguishable from those struck under federal auspices. In our Spring 2023 Whitman Expo Auction, Stack's Bowers Galleries will offer an example of this historic date, pedigreed to the CAG Set of the Fairmont Collection.
An article by Bill Myers in the February 4, 2023 MPCGram discusses some medals of the Hungarian Levente. We're republishing it here with permission. -Editor
Hungary was restricted to an army of 35,000 after World War I and conscription was banned. To get around this Levente Associations were established in 1920 and levente loosely translate to
will be a knight. They were paramilitary youth organizations to promote physical and health training and run by military veterans. In 1939 it became mandatory for males aged 12 to 21 years old to join levente. It was comparable to the Hitler Youth but Levente was not openly fascist or overly politicized but were not free of political influences.
This heartwarming article and local news program video describe how a Virginia man was reunited with his father's Congressional Medal of Honor. -Editor
One man in Roanoke was finally reunited with his father's Congressional Medal of Honor after years of searching.
Imagine losing a family heirloom and never getting closer to finding it.
It is actually the only thing I have that represents my father, said Bob Wilkin.
In 1946, at just 7 years old, Bob received the Congressional Medal honoring his father, Edward Wilkin.
The Congressional Space Medal of Honor has been awarded to the two astronauts who piloted the first NASA SpaceX mission to orbit. -Editor
Two former NASA astronauts — Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley — were awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor on Tuesday. The duo ushered in a new era of space exploration when they flew to orbit aboard a SpaceX rocket in 2020, for the Demo-2 mission.
Vice President Harris presented the prestigious award to Behnken and Hurley during a ceremony at the White House.
We've often discussed "Short Snorters" and the Short Snorter Project. Next month's ANA National Money Show in Phoenix will feature an impressive display of WWII short snorters. Here's the announcement. -Editor
The signature of President Harry S. Truman is in black ink to the left of George Washington's portrait on this World War II
Visitors to the American Numismatic
Association 2023 National Money Show® (www.NationalMoneyShow.com) in Phoenix,
Arizona, March 2-4, can see the unprecedented, 64-foot-long display of
banknotes autographed by World War II-era dignitaries. The exhibit, courtesy of the
nonprofit Short Snorter Project (www.ShortSnorter.org), features over 300 signatures of
generals, admirals, presidents, prime ministers, and ambassadors.
Forbes magazine published an article on the presence of woman on banknotes around the world, warning that the passing of Queen Elizabeth could lead to multiple changes. -Editor
After the death of Queen Elizabeth II of England, who was featured on more banknotes than any other female by a long stretch, she might gradually disappear from them. Australia announced yesterday that the late queen will not grace new currency issues. While British territories or Commonwealth countries could decide to begin featuring the new British monarch, King Charles III, others—including Australia—will use the opportunity to move away from royal motives that could appear dated.
Don Cleveland and Kavan Ratnatunga passed along this article on the Australian Treasury's announcement about a change to Australian currency now that Charles is King. One publication headlined their article "Aussies to chop monarch's head from banknote." -Editor
King Charles will not feature on Australia's $5 banknote following a decision by the Reserve Bank of Australia, prompting outrage from the opposition.
The portrait of Queen Elizabeth II first appeared on the $5 polymer note in July 1992 when the Queen celebrated the 40th anniversary of her accession.
Following the Queen's death, the RBA reviewed the design and on Thursday announced via a statement that the note would change, following consultation with the federal government.
Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor
A Stack's Bowers blog article by Chris Bulfinch discusses a nice Large Cent likely from the famous Nichols Hoard. -Editor
Mint State 1797 Sheldon-135 large cents are relatively abundant owing to the Nichols Hoard, a group of 1796 and 1797 cents owned by David Nichols. A resident of Gallows Hill in Salem, Massachusetts, Nichols in the late 19th century distributed a number of his accumulated cents to local young numismatists. The coins are thought to have originated with Benjamin Goodhue, kin to Nichols' wife, who served in the House of Representatives and Senate in the 1790s. Numismatic historians have not been able to confirm all the details surrounding the Nichols Hoard, but it is likely that this coin was part of it as S-135 is among the varieties identified in the hoard. Dozens of Mint State examples of S-135 are thought to survive.
To read the complete article, see:
STACK'S BOWERS GALLERIES TO OFFER S-135 REVERSE OF 1797 LARGE CENT IN SPRING 2023 RARITIES NIGHT SESSION (https://stacksbowers.com/stacks-bowers-galleries-to-offer-s-135-reverse-of-1797-large-cent-in-spring-2023-rarities-night-session/)
Other topics this week include the Stewart Blay Collection of Lincoln Cents and the declining use of checks. -Editor
Workers at a golf course in Australia discovered a mysterious corroded old coin. Can you identify it? Answer below. -Editor
When three golfers started repairing an old bench at Springwood Golf Course they never expected to uncover a wartime mystery.
During their repairs on the bench, found outside the golf course's pro shop, the three men discovered an old coin behind a memorial plaque.
The coin depicts ancient art and features intriguing dents.
Hoping to learn more, one of the men - Bob Blakemore - reached out to local veteran Greg Meek, a member of the Blue Mountains Vietnam Veterans Association.
Mr Meek believes the coin depicts the acropolis - and that the damaged parts of it could be from stray shrapnel.