The Numismatic Bibliomania Society


The E-Sylum: Volume 25, Number 26, June 26, 2022, Article 23


Tuesday June 21, 2022 was my first day back at the office following five days at home for our daughter's high school graduation festivities and a long holiday weekend. I was tired, but looking forward to the monthly dinner meeting of my Northern Virginia numismatic social group, Nummis Nova.

Our host for the evening was Jon Radel and he'd made a reservation at the Greek restaurant Nostos in Vienna/Tyson's Corner. Parking was getting tight but I found a spot and made my way to our table. I took a seat between Jon and Daryl Haynor. The remaining attendees were Mike Packard, Dave Schenkman, Eric Schena, Robert Hoppensteadt, Steve Bishop, Roger Burdette, and Julian Liedman.

For the first time in ages I'd brought nothing to display - zero, zip, nada. No new books or other recent acquisitions, and I hadn't been working on my collection or library. But my fellow members came through as always and some of their displays are discussed below. But first, some of my posed and cameo group photos.

  Nummis Nova 2022-06 Burdette Leidman Radel Haynor Schena
From left: Roger, Julian, Jon, Daryl, Eric
  Nummis Nova 2022-06 Packard Schenkman Shena Hoppensteadt Bishop 2
Mike, Dave, Eric, Robert, Steve
  Nummis Nova 2022-06 Packard Schenkman Shena Hoppensteadt Bishop Burdette Leidman Radel
Mike, Dave, Eric, Robert, Steve, Roger, Julian, Jon

Topics of conversation at my end of the table included upcoming sales - for Daryl the upcoming Stack's Bowers Galleries sale of his classic half eagle gold variety collection, and for me a small consignment of foreign material to Stephen Album. Jon told us of the travails of a postal shipment from Poland, Dave filled us in on former regular Gene Brandenburg, and all of us indulged in non-numismatic topics running the gamut from vacation trips to researching family history. Roger passed around a copy of his new article on "Circulation of Foreign Gold and Silver Coins in the United States – 1826", based on U.S. Mint survey records found in the National Archives.

Steve's Beauties
Steve Bishop had a nicely toned 1881 Morgan dollar and an interesting overstruck 1762 Russian 4 Kopeck piece that Daryl and I discussed.

  1881-CC Morgan PCGS MS67
1881-CC Morgan PCGS MS67
  1762 4K NGC XF Details Obv 1762 4K NGC XF Details Rev
1762 4K NGC XF Details

The Akropolis of Gangra-Germanicopolis
Robert Hoppensteadt collects Roman coins with images of architecture. He brought this recent purchase from the Leu Numismatik auction 11, lot 190.

  PAPHLAGONIA Gangra-Germanicopolis Caracalla Tetrassarion

APHLAGONIA. Gangra-Germanicopolis. Caracalla, 198-217. Tetrassarion (Orichalcum, 30 mm, 15.46 g, 6 h). AYT•K•M•AYP• ANTONINOC Laureate and cuirassed bust of Caracalla to right, seen from behind. Rev. GANGPON• // APX• / ?AF• View of the akropolis of Gangra-Germanicopolis, with two smaller buildings, with pointed roofs, between two large towers; all buildings with entrances; between the left tower and the left building, masonry; the smaller building on the right seen in half-perspective. Bricault & Delrieux - (D42/R106). Price & Trell -, cf. fig. 517 (same reverse die, but with bust to left). Very rare and very likely the finest known. A beautifully struck example with an exceptional architectural reverse. Very minor smoothing on the reverse, otherwise, nearly extremely fine.

From a European collection, formed before 2005.

Buried beneath the modern Turkish town of Çankiri, nothing has survived of Gangra-Germanicopolis to the present day and hence, we hence not know what the ancient city looked like, except for the unusual architectural images appearing on very rare Roman Provincial issues struck under Caracalla. Given the two towers on the left and right and the masonry emerging from the left tower, it seems likely that this is a rendering of the city walls, or more specifically, of the local akropolis. That Gangra-Germanicopolis was fortified follows from Strabo, who reports that the Galatian dynast Deiotaros '... possessed Gangra, the royal residence of Morzeüs, which was at the same time a small town and a fortress.' (Strab. XII, 3.41).

It is worth noting that this is the only issue of Gangra to omit its Roman name, Germanicopolis, leading Bricault & Delrieux to speculate that the depiction of the local, presumably very old akropolis and the focus on the city's native name may represent a deliberate accentuation of Gangra's antiquity, thus underlining the rather unsubtle epithet APX ?AF (= APXEOTATH ?AF?AGONIAS), meaning 'the oldest (city) of Paphlagonia'.

McKinley Political Badge
Dave Schenkman brought a very unusual political item.

  McKinley brass shell Political Badge obverse McKinley brass shell Political Badge reverse

Dave writes:

"This is the most unusual political item I've encountered, and I have to wonder why they were produced; wearing one would be really uncomfortable. The medal is a brass shell, five inches in diameter, and overall length is nearly seven inches. In addition to the political message, the manufacturer, James Murdock, Jr., a Cincinnati die-sinker has displayed his name prominently on the cardboard reverse. Murdock produced several different varieties of the badge, and also a couple featuring a bust of Admiral George Dewey."

Dave's Dollars
While Dave is known far and wide as The Token Guy®, he often surprises us with a wide variety of numismatic items, from gorgeous British coronation medals to U.S. type coins. Tonight he brought along three slabbed early U.S. dollars dated 1795, 1796, and 1799. He photographed this one for us.

  1796 dollar obverse 1796 dollar reverse

Nice coin!


RENAISSANCE OF AMERICAN COINAGE: Wizard Coin Supply is the official distributor for Roger Burdette's three volume series that won NLG Book of the Year awards for 2006, 2007 and 2008. Contact us for dealer or distributor pricing at

Wayne Homren, Editor

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