Reader Etienne LePen submitted these thoughts on the anniversary of 9/11.
After years at the Sheraton, the New York International moved downtown to an attractive lower floor in the World Trade Center (as can be noted in the background of this picture).
At the WTC - Miquel Pratt of Paraguay, Joe & Lee Firester, Elon Malis of Israel, Peter Last, and the Pomexport group (Judith, Steve & young Alan - who occasionally prepares E-Sylum advertisements).
A few weeks before the attacks, a German associate, Peter and I were heading down to the ANA in Atlanta, and had a rather strange check-in at Newark Airport. The security lady was a Pakistani who spent an inordinate amount of time going thru every coin flip and each individual banknote. After about 25 minutes of this craziness, I asked if she was looking for something specific and she said - no. In the hopes of speeding up the process, so as not to miss our flight and with the idea that the attention may be drawn away from my innocuous numismatic material, I asked if it was OK that my buddy was carrying a 12" Bowie knife, to which she said - no problem. If that was security, something was wrong.
My associate, Peter, being German was very punctual, but on 9/11 he did not show up as usual; that was strange as it was a short bus ride from Manhattan (where he lived) to my office in NJ. Peter finally arrived and said that there was some commotion in the city, but suggested we look out the window as we had a clear view to the City. Surprisingly all we could see was smoke. Later that day we became aware of the horrendous attacks.
Although we debated heavily, that weekend we set up at the Smythe Show in PA and met with several friends who had survived the ordeal (although we did know the brother of a collectibles dealer who was on one of the planes). To us who were not alive during WW2, 9/11 was really the day that will live in infamy.
It seemed ominous that this New York Telephone card had the white band shown at this level of the towers.
Thank you. Here are links to some articles published after the event.
Eric Cheung wrote:
"I live down around City Hall in
Manhattan and it's a pretty commercial area; at this time in the
morning there's normally quite some commotion down here
particularly since everyone is trying to get to work.
"I just heard a rumble that was about twenty seconds long. ...
A couple minutes later, my mom came into my room and
told me a plane just crashed into the World Trade Center.
"In utter disbelief, I kicked out of my bedsheets and looked
out the window and saw lots of people running around in the
streets heading up Broadway away from the explosion. I
also checked out the living room and saw CNN extensively
covering this disaster.
"About eight or ten minutes later, ... I heard a huge explosion
as the legs of my bed and the floor of my 9th floor apartment
"The first world trade center collapsed down to the bottom...
"I walked not ten feet from my neighbor's apartment when I
heard an even louder rumble. My neighbors summoned me
to return to the apartment, and in the last second as I dashed
to the window, I saw the final section of World Trade Center
2 tumble straight down into the ground. My neighbors and
mother were hysterical. Moments later the debris and ash of
the aftermath rose into the blazingly sunny sky.
"I returned to my apartment about 10:28, the hallways in my
building filling with smoke. I continued down the hallway
where there are windows every ten feet or so, four or five in
all down about a hundred feet corridor. There was white dust
atop every roof I could see, and it looked like a snowstorm
had just hit us, or radioactive waste from a nuclear explosion
had just rained down upon us. After a while, the two look
the same, and are both frightening and frustrating in equal
To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
AMERICAN NUMISMATIC SOCIETY EFFECTS
NEW YORK NUMISMATIC CLUB MEETING RESCHEDULED
Wayne Homren, Editor
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