Thursday, August 15, 2019
You know those trips where everything that can go wrong, does? Well, my trip to Chicago for the 2019 American Numismatic Association World's Fair of
Money was the opposite of that. I got up early and drove to the long-term parking lot at Dulles Airport. The parking shuttle came quickly, there was no line at
security, boarding went smoothly, I got the next-to-last space in the overhead bins for my luggage, the hotel shuttle arrived within minutes, and checking into
the Crowne Plaza at Rosemont at 10am local time I snagged the last currently available room. I was blessed. After dropping off my things I made my way across
the street to the convention center.
I've been to enough of these shows that I have a game I like to play on arrival - which numismatic friend or celebrity will I run into first? It should
have been an easy call. Carl Wolf of the Chicago Coin Club was among the members manning a table just inside the door.
But I didn't have a lot of time so I started heading toward the room upstairs where the Numismatic Bibliomania Society board meeting would be held, and
crossing the lobby I practically stumbled right into NBS President and Treasurer Tom Harrison and Chuck Heck. Together we made our way to the room where Len
Augsburger was having a conversation with Ken Bressett and Dennis Tucker of Whitman Publishing. It was great to see them all, and the Redbook Editor Emeritus
was looking hale and hearty. He and Dennis had to head over to the Numismatic Literary Guild awards lunch.
Soon the NBS Board was assembled for our meeting. It was a good one, kept moving along by Tom and featuring a great analysis of our financial position by
Chuck. Bottom line: we're solvent! But there are always issues to address or be mindful of, and I think it was a very productive meeting with some
interesting ideas for moving forward.
I had given an update on the E-Sylum ANA edition, but ducked out a bit early to run over to the NLG event. The E-Sylum didn't come away
with a plaque this year, but I got to sit down with my fellow Nummis Nova members Dave Schenkman and Eric Schena, and have a nice brownie for a snack. I heard
Ron Guth give a great history of how he built, sold and developed his CoinFacts site. Afterwards I met up with Mark Ferguson, who had been ably assisting with
the NLG awards.
Next I found Bob Van Ryzin and Tom Michael at a table in the hallway. It was my first time meeting Tom in person. He's edited umpteen books at the
former Krause Publications and is now with AIM Media, the new owner following the bankruptcy of parent company F+W. Bob had earlier retired after a long career
writing and editing at Krause. I was pleased to hear that the new owners were eager to learn about the numismatic market, retain the Coin of the Year program
and rebuild the publications.
Around the corner I found Dennis Tucker sitting with Bill Bierly reviewing proofs of his upcoming book on the In God We Trust motto in U.S. numismatics. It
looks like a landmark work. I noted that for years the only information I had in my library on the topic was a thin pamphlet. This will be a meaty,
well-researched book with many great photos.
Walking onto the bourse floor I ran into both Dan Hamelberg and Benjamin Franklin (my old friend Pat McBride dressed in full costume and going in and out of
character). I introduced him (them?) to Dan and we had a nice chat. I asked Ben to refrain from taking air baths during his stay.
Alan Workman, Dan Friedus, and Marc Ricard at the NBS table
I next found my way to the NBS table between numismatic literature dealers Charlie Davis and Kolbe & Fanning. I was there to meet up with Alan Workman
who is working on upcoming numismatic literature sales of his own. I learned that the table had been swamped with visitors the day before. Here's a report
from Mike Marotta.
Tom and Pam Harrison at the NBS table; Photo by Mike Marrotta
Mike Marotta writes:
I attended the 2019 World's Fair of Money only for August 12th and 13th in order to speak at the Sundman Lecture Series. I arrived Tuesday afternoon and
immediately went to the bourse floor. I met NBS members Joel Orosz, Len Augsburger, George Kolbe, and Betty Lawrence at the Kolbe & Fanning booth. Next to
them, Tom Harrison and Pam Harrison were staffing the NBS club table.
Also on the floor, Gilman Parsons from Sonoma, California, (Booth 1622) was offering books that cost about as much as a home.
Before long Len Augsburger was back at the table again. LongtimeE-Sylum supporter Doug Winter dropped by and Len and I had a nice conversation with
him on multiple topics, including venues for the ANA shows.
Throughout the rest of the show the table was manned at various times by myself, Kellen Hoard, Chuck Heck, Len Augsburger, and NBS President Tom Harrison
and wife Pam. On display were some auction lots for the next day's fundraising sale.
Charlie Davis and Neil Musante at Charlie's table
The rest of my afternoon at the show was spent marching up and down the aisles.
Ken Barr and Stephen Patrick at the Souvenir Card Collectors table
Around 6 o'clock I ran into Ben Franklin having an ale at the Crowne Plaza bar. I joined him and ordered a sandwich for dinner. Fellow bar patrons took
their photo with him, holding up a $100 bill. "It's all about the Benjamins!", they said.
IAPN Cocktail Party
I was invited to the evening's Cocktail Party for the International Association of Professional Numismatists (IAPN). It was an enjoyable evening. I got to
meet Catharine Lorber and her husband and several dealers from around the U.S. and the world. I as also able to spend some time chatting with Kerry Wetterstrom
of Classical Numismatic Group. See the earlier article in this issue for IAPN's presentation of their 2018 Book Prize to Catharine Lorber.
That was enough for me for one day. I returned to my room where I was serenaded by fireworks from the nearby concert venue.
Friday, August 16, 2019
Signing the SS Central America Book
One of my first stops Friday morning was to the Goldberg's table to pick up a copy of the new book on the SS Central America treasures. There I ran
into Bob Evans, Joel Orosz, John "JD" Dannreuther, and Dwight Manley.
Bob Evans filling out a receipt
LEFT: Wayne Homren, Bob Evans
RIGHT: Bob Evans with a Deluxe copy
JD, Dwight Manley, Bob Evans, Wayne Homren. Photo by Joel Orosz
NBS General Meeting
I'm running out of time to complete this diary, and I know the event will be well covered in our print journal, The Asylum. So here are a few photos
of our General Meeting and a link to a Flickr gallery for more.
Some auction lots
Kellen Hoard speaking with Tom Babinski
To visit the photo gallery see:
2019 ANA NBS General Meeting
I had a great conversation with Karl Moulton at his table, where I enjoyed looking at some of his numismatic literature.
We'll save some more for next week. What a great show it was.
Wayne Homren, Editor
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