The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 20, Number 31, July 30, 2017, Article 20


A Wealth of New Numismatic Books
Darryl Atchison from near Cork City, Ireland writes:

Two things sprang to mind while reading last week's E-Sylum.

Firstly, there is no better publication in numismatics, period, and that's not just idle prattle.

Secondly, how are we supposed to afford all those 'old books' we need when people keep writing new ones! Don't these authors realize that they're denting our bidding power at auctions! But, seriously, it is great to see so many new books being written on such a regular basis and having this forum to share them.

Thanks for your kind notes. This is a great time to be a numismatist - there has never before been so much great information available on our specialty, in print and online. -Editor

1986 Yale University Elizabethan Club Medal

Last week we discussed Heidi Wastweet's new Yale University Elizabethan Club medal, which is not available for sale. Harry Waterson forwarded this eBay lot containing a 1986 medal for the club by Joseph Reed. Nice. Thanks. -Editor

1986 Yale University Elizabethan Club Medal obverse 1986 Yale University Elizabethan Club Medal reverse

The Elizabethan Club of Yale University 75th Anniversary Medal, 1986. Bronze, 79mm. diameter, 11mm. thick. By Joseph Reed. Obverse: Facing 3/4 figure of resplendent Queen Elizabeth incised and in relief. Reverse: Small and simple phoenix, and Elizabethan badge. Housed in a Paris Mint box with stand.

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Query: Ancient Coin Cereal Promotion?
Last week readers attributed the ancient coin Phil Hoover found. He writes:

Seattle found coin obverse I have been told by one of the members of our detecting club that one possibility of its origin lies in a promotion that a cereal company did, supposedly back when movies like Ben Hur were popular and Roman history was in the public eye. You could send in x amount of box tops and in return you would receive a Roman coin. Is that the truth? Don't know. That member claims to have found several roman coins over the years in and around Seattle. My girlfriend found her own Roman coin about two years ago, so there may be some truth to why such coins are being found in the area. At any rate, thanks for the help in identifying this (and even better that my coin is older than hers! lol)

Do any of our readers recall such a promotion? -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

The George J. Verbeck I Gold 1900 Exposition Medal
Mark Verbeck writes:

My great-grandfather, George J. Verbeck I, was awarded a gold medal of the type illustrated for engraving at the 1900 Exposition. I am the current custodian of the medal, complete with the original brown or maroon leather box. Although a golden wash was applied, its composition is clearly silver, as indicated by the marking "ARGENT" on the edge. A great number of gold, silver, and bronze medals were awarded for excellence in a wide array of arts and industries. The artist is Jules-Clément Chaplain (1839-1909).

It may not be of general interest, but there's a rather atmospheric video of scenes from the event, including Edison's moving sidewalk.

Thanks! Cool video. -Editor

To view the video, see:
Paris in 1900 - Exposition Universelle [Rare Footage] (

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NUMISMATIC NUGGETS: JULY 23, 2017 : 1900 Exposition Universelle Medal (

Neil deGrasse Tyson: Problem With American Currency
Kavan Ratnatunga of Sri Lanka writes:

Here's a great short 7 min extract from 2014 which I stumbled on today on YouTube. I was waiting for him to mention "In God we Trust" but that was not needed.

Thanks. Tyson makes a great point about the Great Men we choose to honor on our U.S. currency, in contrast to those honored in countries around the word. Check it out. -Editor

Tyson on banknotes

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
Neil deGrasse Tyson Describes One Problem With American Currency... (

Wikipedia As an Information Source
Last week Bob Leonard wrote:

"... but in a day when I see Wikipedia, of all things, being cited as an authority,"

Arthur Shippee of Hamden, CT writes:

Wikipedia is pretty decent. Its articles are supposed to be well-sourced. My chief concern is more that it is boring rather than wrong. Used properly, it is a solid source.

I've never cited Wikipedia as an authority, but do find it useful. The references it in turn cites should of course be checked, and many of them do turn out to be authoritative. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JULY 23, 2017 : Critical Thinking About Internet Sources (

More on Token Issuer Robert Loder
Joe Esposito writes:

1796 Woodbrodge Alms House Penny Token obverse The article last week on the Conder token highlighting alms, D & H Suffolk 15, is interesting. Robert Loder, the bookseller responsible for the token, was also a local historian. One of his books was Ordinaces, etc., for Seckford’s Almshouses in Woodbridge (1792), which discusses Thomas Seckford’s extensive charity work in the sixteenth century (He is identified on the token as “Sekford”). Presumably Loder was promoting his book. The Latin inscription on the reverse of the token translated means: “Prayers and alms reigns in the presence of God.”

According to the very interesting book Tokens of the Eighteenth Century Connected with Booksellers & Bookmakers (W. Longman, 1916), Loder’s grandson “found a box containing over one hundred of these tokens; the dies were also in his possession, so he had six specimen struck in silver, one of which, with the dies, he presented to the British Museum.”

Interesting! Thanks. -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NUMISMATIC NUGGETS: JULY 23, 2017 : 1796 Woodbrodge Alms House Penny Token (

Ballantine Beer Spinner Token
Ken Berger writes:

In the last E-Sylum, you mentioned token coin spinners which were used to determine who would pay for drinks at a bar. Attached are scans of both sides of a Ballantine Beer Spinner. Ballantine Beer was founded in 1840 in Newark, NJ and was sold in 1972. The interesting part of the story is that I have two of these spinners and I have never been a beer drinker.

Ballantine Spinner obverse Ballantine Spinner reverse

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JULY 23, 2017 : Lincoln Cent Fidget Spinner (

Parachute Troops on OSS Medal Designs
Dennis Tucker writes:

In last week’s E-Sylum you mentioned, “I don't recall ever seeing a medal relating to parachute troops.”

In the June 21, 2017, Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee meeting at Mint headquarters in Washington, we reviewed a portfolio of design sketches for the upcoming Congressional Gold Medal for the Office of Strategic Services. The OSS was (to give a simplified definition) the predecessor to today’s CIA and other modern U.S. intelligence agencies. Several of the medal’s potential designs feature OSS operatives parachuting into occupied territory from a B-24 Liberator. This was an important means of secretly getting U.S. agents into operation during World War II.

Dennis included several design examples; I've selected a few for display here, in no particular order. Thanks! -Editor

OSS-R-10 OSS-R-09

OSS-O-06 OSS-O-02

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NUMISMATIC NUGGETS: JULY 23, 2017 : Parachute Troops Medal (

More on Coin-Embedded Lucite Toilet Seats
Jeff Shevlin writes:

I have the coin-embedded Lucite toilet seats in the bathrooms in my house. In 2011 when I was the General Chairman for the ANA Convention held in Sacramento, I had a large reception at my house with nearly 50 numismatists attending. I was a little disappointed that not a single person commented on my toilet seats. Maybe they were having too much fun to take a bathroom break?

Doesn't EVERYBODY have a houseful of these? They probably didn't notice anything different... -Editor

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NOTES FROM E-SYLUM READERS: JULY 23, 2017 : More on Coin-Embedded Lucite Toilet Seats (

Bison or Buffalo?

Dick Johnson snail-mailed me this cartoon, which is from the July/August 2017 Reader's Digest. Thanks. -Editor

Bison Buffalo cartoon

Dick asks:

"Is it Bison or Buffalo Nickel?"

Holabird E-Sylum ad 2017-07-19

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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