The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 20, Number 36, September 3, 2017, Article 12


Donn Pearlman writes:

I was saddened, but also enjoyed reading, the info about Charles Ricard who I met through Chicago Coin Club meetings.

David T. Alexander writes:

Charles J Ricard as Napoleon medal I was sorry to learn of the passing of Charles Ricard, long a stalwart of the Rochester Numismatic Association and Chicago Coin Club (RNA). The Rochester group (founded 1912) has maintained an unbroken line of Presidential portrait medals since its beginning. As a younger collector these introduced me to Ricard.

Someone had done a story on the series for the TAMS Journal with plate pages illustrating the types. Each medal bore a bust in business suit with each president's name, including CHARLES J. RICARD. The next cut presented the same portrait but now undraped and laureate with cutline CHARLES J. RICARD AS NAPOLEON! This was heart-stopping and I spent decades trying to find a specimen of this fantastic tribute. Alas, I was introduced decades later to Ricard himself, who revealed that there was only ONE such medal in existence, made by a talented engraver for some of his numismatic friends in recognition of his achievements as a student and collector of Napoleonic material. Ah, well!

I located the TAMS Journal article on the Newman Numismatic Portal. Very cool medal! -Editor

To read the complete TAMS article on the Newman Numismatic Portal, see:
TAMS Journal, Vol. 13, No. 4 Part II
TAMS Journal, Token and Medal Society (1973)

To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
EDWIN J. REITER (1938-2017) (
CHARLES J. RICARD (1930-2017) (

Numismatic literature dealer George Kolbe offers this remembrance of Charles J. Ricard. Thank you. -Editor

Over the years I have visited Chicago a number of times. In the 1980s particularly, I have fond memories of numismatic books and libraries acquired there and even more so, of the fascinating people who owned them.

On one early visit I visited Charles Ricard at his invitation. If memory serves, the main purpose of the trip was to secure the substantial library formed by Col. H.D. Davidson. That accomplished, I did visit and purchase some books from Charles, but mostly I remember his gracious hospitality… and an intricately carved antique Asian wooden chair. I guess I have a thing about numismatic chairs (in New Jersey, I bought and still have an adjustable wooden stool branded on the bottom: H.E. DEATS). The Asian chair was beautiful but its former owner is what impressed me. Charles Ricard’s roots were in upstate New York, long a hotbed of numismatic activity. Charles was close with Syracuse numismatist and coin dealer George J. Bauer and it was his (famous to me) keister that once occupied it.

On another Chicago trip I obtained for sale the magnificent numismatic library formed by Michael A. Powills, an early highlight of my career. During this period, a visit with another well-known Chicago area collector, Chester Poderski, was also memorable on two fronts: a substantial mid-day meal graciously prepared from scratch by his 90+ year-old mother (T-bone steak with all the fixings and homemade apple pie for dessert), followed by Chester proudly showing me his many hidey holes throughout the old three story house (Morgan dollars here, bullion there, rare coins everywhere). I even bought a few books.

Sorry to ramble but Chicago is a wonderful numismatic city (a later visit to the Rarcoa library, with Myron Xenos, is another fond memory). Anyway, Charles Ricard and I both attended nearly all of the ANA conventions from the late 70s onward (Charles attended many before then). Most years we ran in to each other and shared a pleasant conversation. Charles J. Ricard was a gentleman of the old school. His love of numismatics and its literature was infectious and enduring. I was honored to have known him.

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Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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