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V23 2020 INDEX       E-SYLUM ARCHIVE

The E-Sylum: Volume 23, Number 3, January 19, 2020, Article 5

BOSTON NUMISMATIC SOCIETY ARCHIVES DIGITIZED

The latest addition to the Newman Numismatic Portal is the archives of the Boston Numismatic Society. Project Coordinator Len Augsburger provided the following report. -Editor

Constitution of the Boston Numismatic Society article one

Newman Portal Adds Boston Numismatic Society Archives

One of the oldest numismatic societies in the United States, the Boston Numismatic Society (BNS) for many years (1870-1891) published the American Journal of Numismatics and today continues as an active numismatic organization. BNS member Yale Lansky, working with Newman Portal, has facilitated scanning of the Society archives, and these records are now available on Newman Portal. The series consists of eight volumes of Society proceedings (1860-1992), treasury book (1860-1982), and a two-volume history compiled in 1998 by Thomas P. Rockwell. The earliest records contain well-known names including Jeremiah Colburn, Thomas Appleton, Augustine Shurtleff, and others.

Appleton reported in the minutes the launch of the Society on February 11, 1860:

“Eight gentlemen met by invitation on Saturday, February 11 at the rooms of the N.E. Historic Genealogical Society, 13 Bromfield St. Mr. Jeremiah Colburn occupied the chair….the secretary read a constitution….”

As today, exhibits were an important component of meetings, and the Society proceedings carefully record who exhibited what, so that anyone researching these individuals, or their collections, will find this an important source of information. Moreover, the series as a whole documents a formative period of American numismatic history, when collectors began gathering in a formal way in order to create enduring institutions. Some succeeded and some failed, and we are fortunate that BNS has persevered and faithfully preserved an important part of the historical record.

Image: Constitution of the Boston Numismatic Society (1860), article one

Link to Boston Numismatic Society archives on Newman Portal:
https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/archivedetail/535143

What a fantastic addition for NNP! I put out a call here in The E-Sylum a little over four years ago. This has been a long time coming, but well worth the wait. This archive will inform numismatic scholarship for many years to come. -Editor

The Newman Numismatic Portal is actively looking for opportunities to digitize content from the archives of numismatic organizations. Already available are archives of the Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society and the Rochester Numismatic Association, With the new scanning facility in place at the American Numismatic Associations, the ANS archives will be digitized in the coming months and years. If your club has an archive, NNP will digitize some or all of it free of charge.

High on our list are the early archives of the Boston Numismatic Society. Do they exist?

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
BOSTON NUMISMATIC SOCIETY ARCHIVES SOUGHT (https://www.coinbooks.org/esylum_v18n52a12.html)



Wayne Homren, Editor

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