The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 26, Number 46, November 12, 2023, Article 24


Taylor Swift
No, Taylor wasn't at the Whitman show, but hey, she's still single and maybe one of the unattached numismatists I know will bring her one day. Her name came up when I explained a family trip I'm planning next July. Our daughter and her best friend are Swifties and had trouble getting concert tickets. She asked if she could go to a show in Switzerland if they could get tickets. Figuring that's unlikely, I said yes. Guess what - they scored floor seats and now we've got plane tickets to Zurich.

Taylor_Swift Len had great fun with that news - "flying to Zurich for a Taylor Swift concert" was absolutely the last thing he ever thought would come out of my mouth. Me too. But now we're planning a two-family trip with the two girls, two sets of parents and a brother. The ladies have the floor seats and the menfolk are in an upper section of the stadium. With a beverage in hand I expect to frame the experience as kind of like a Super Bowl, with a really long halftime show.

But it's a great opportunity to bond with my daughter while she's home from college for the summer. I've already shared with her a Spotify playlist of my own favorite female vocalists, and she flooded the zone by adding a bazillion Taylor Swift songs.

Meanwhile, I discovered that Taylor has at least one coin in her collection.

When Taylor Swift won her countersuit against former Colorado D.J. David Mueller, whom she had accused of groping her in a photo op, she asked Mueller to pay her a symbolic $1. Nearly four months after this verdict, Mueller has finally paid that $1, a Sacajawea coin that he mailed to the singer on November 28, he told the Associated Press in a letter.

Who can come up with another numismatic Swift connection?

For those who've had their head in coin books too long and haven't heard of Taylor Swift, see:

To read the complete article, see:
Taylor Swift Has Finally Been Sent the Symbolic Dollar She Won in Court (

Winston Zack and Jeff Rock
2023-11-09 Winson Zack, Jeff Rock Before leaving JK's table I had a nice talk with Winston Zack and Jeff Rock Jeff is a longtime E-Sylum contributor. Zack's specialty is contemporary counterfeit coins, and we discussed his next book project.

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An Unusual Star Note
Later on in the afternoon I caught up again with Mike Packard back at John Kraljevich's table, and told John about my little game of "Who's the First Numismatist" I'll run into at a coin show. When I said Mike was today's "winner", John asked, "What did he win - what's the prize?" So I had to scramble and checked my wallet looking for a dollar bill I'd noticed earlier in the week. Turns out it was still at home on my scanner. But I promised to bring it to him at our next Nummis Nova dinner - "a very unique 'star note'.

  unusual star note

Looking at this again now, I noticed that the scribbler had also blacked out the letter "F" at the top, making this an equally unusual "EDERAL RESERVE NOTE". I also spotted a third scribble I'll leave as an exercise for readers.

Yesterday I came across another unusual 'star' note, a photo of Sotheby's London staff hanging Andy Warhol's "Silver Certificate, 1962".

  Andy Warhol's Silver Certificate, 1962

Howard Finsters 1902 Liberty Penny Having veered into the topic of numismatics in art, here's another work that caught my eye this week - Howard Finster's "1902 Liberty Penny" in Slotin Auction's Fall Self-Taught Art Masterpiece Sale. From: ArtDaily Newsletter: Tuesday, Nov 07, 2023.

To read the complete articles, see:
The Hidden Costs of Working in the Art World (
'Masterpieces' find new homes in Slotin Auction's Fall Self-Taught Sale (

Closing Out the Day
I did a lot of running around toward the end of the afternoon. I stopped to say hello to literature dealer Charlie Davis who was closing up his table after a long day, then ran into Chris MacDowell who invited me to stop by the Colonial Coin Collectors Club event.

Kerry Wetterstrom and Dennis Tucker
2023-11-09 Kerry Wetterstrom, Dennis Tucker I had to beg off our conversation to catch up with Dennis Tucker, who reported that kickoff meetings with John Feigenbaum and CDN Publishing were going very well. I only saw John from a distance and didn't get a chance to speak to him, but he was understandably quite busy having just announced CDN's acquisition of the iconic Red Book publisher.

The two of us chatted with Kerry Wetterstrom on multiple topics, including other collectible fields (yes, there are people who are the Q. David Bowers of outboard motors). Retirement was another topic - I'm getting closer to retirement from my day job, and Kerry's longtime association with Classical Numismatics Group has many people thinking he still works there despite having retired two years ago.

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:

Stack's Bowers, Vicken Vegparian and Dan Freidus
Around the corner from my conversation with Kerry and Dennis was the Stack's Bowers table, where I enjoyed a look at displayed lots from future sales. Forgive the poor photos - it's always a challenge to avoid glare from overhead lighting.

  2023-11-09 Stack's Bowers table Indian Peace Medals
Indian Peace Medals
  2023-11-09 Stack's Bowers table world coins slabbed
World Coins
  2023-11-09 Stack's Bowers table paper money
Costa Rica Paper Money

  2023-11-09 Stack's Bowers table Costa Rica note

At the Stack's Bowers table I spoke with Vicken Vegparian about the Indian Peace Medals and getting scans of the inventory book for the Millholland Collection, that century-old cabinet Stack's Bowers recently sold. We'll look forward to adding this to the Newman Numismatic Portal for future researchers.

Longtime NBS member Dan Freidus joined us for a bit and we learned about one of his retirement side projects - locating old Jewish cookbooks not already in the extensive collection of the New York Public Library.

Other folks I spoke to on the bourse included Julian Leidman, Terry Hess and Dan Sedwick. I also ran into or saw Bruce Smith, Dennis Hengeveld and Jeff Garrett, but didn't get a chance to talk.

After the bourse closed I looked in the show program for the location of the colonial coin group event, but couldn't find it listed anywhere. I remembered one of these being in the Sheraton hotel in the past, so I walked over there. When I saw a group of grey-haired folks hoofing it up a stalled escalator I followed them to a ballroom and recognized a number of folks including Jeff Rock and NBS Board member Roger Siboni.

I was only there to mingle and spoke briefly with Chris McCawley, Julia Casey and others before heading back out. I walked over to the Fogo de Chão restaurant where I had a relaxing dinner with Len Augsbuger and friends.

While colder weather was on the way, the evening was still warm as I headed back to my car from the restaurant. I'm glad I was able to get to the show and see so many great friends - I only wish I'd had time to do more.

Dick Johnson
At home on Friday for the Federal Veteran's Day holiday observation, I gradually caught up with some lingering to-dos cluttering my desk, and was delighted to see a group of photos Dick Johnson's widow Shirley sent me of their 2004 visit to our home in Pittsburgh. Our boys were little and our daughter had just been born. We went out to dinner at a small neighborhood restaurant and came back to show Dick my library/office, where I also shared with him how I create The E-Sylum each week. A delightful visit with the founding editor of Coin World and our most prolific contributor.

  2004 Dick Johnson at Wayne Homren library 2004 Wayne Homren at computer
  2004 Wayne Homren, Dick Johnson at computer

Whew. That's all for this week. Thanks for following along with my little adventures.

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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