The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 2, Number 37:  September 12, 1999: 
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society. 


   New subscribers this week are: Victor Holden, Terry 
   Trantow, George Vanca, Spanish Colonial Cob specialist 
   Roberto Mastalir of Ecuador, and Tom Serfass of the  
   Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society.  

   Also joining us are some members of my local club, the 
   Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society:  Richard Crosby, 
   Charles "Skip" Culleiton, Larry Dziubek, Ed Krivoniak, 
   and Ted Shiff of Cybercoins.  

   Daniel Koppersmith's email address is defunct. This brings 
   our subscriber count to 227. 


   A number of NBS members have neglected to renew their 
   memberships for this year by sending in their dues payment. 
   While we hate to lose anyone, we cannot continue sending 
   The Asylum to nonpaid members.  The next issue, Vol XVII, 
   No. 3, will be mailed only to paid-up members.   Dues 
   are $15 for U.S. members, $20 outside the U.S. Payments 
   should be sent to Dave Hirt at the address at the end 
   of this newsletter.  If you're a member and aren't sure 
   if you're paid up, let me know and I'll check with Dave 
   for you. And if you're not a member yet, please consider 
   joining - we'd love to have you in the fold. 


   The third sale of the Harry W. Bass library is being 
   offered by George Frederick Kolbe.  The public and mail 
   bid sale will be held Saturday, September 25th at the 
   Long Beach Coin & Collectibles Expo in Long Beach, CA.  

   The sale includes many rarities of U.S. and world 
   numismatic literature.  A four-page addendum to the catalog 
   describes the final lot, the extremely rare Perkins' Bank 
   Bill Test by Jacob Perkins, 1809.  "Ex libris George and 
   Melvin Fuld; lot 853 in the August 15, 1971 sale of the Fuld 
   library, where it brought $320 on a $200 estimate.  Later in 
   the 1970's, it was acquired by William L. S. Barrett, in 
   whose library it has resided until now."  Only about six 
   copies are known today of this landmark work produced by the 
   Massachusetts inventor known in numismatic circles for his 
   great contributions to the art of bank note engraving, as 
   well as his dies for the 1788 Massachusetts copper coinage 
   and the Washington Mortuary Medal die. 


   Past NBS President Michael J. Sullivan notes: "Over the 
   next few weeks I will be selling material from my library 
   including 25+ Woodward catalogs, issues and some complete 
   volumes of the American Journal of Numismatics, and my 20 
   Years of assembled research files divided by topics.  The 
   material will be listed over the coming weeks on E-Bay. 
   If you are not already an active buyer in the topic of 
   Numismatic Publications on E-Bay, take a look with this 


   Literature dealer John Bergman writes that the web site 
   for his business, John F. Bergman Numismatic Literature, 
   is now open. The address is:  

   "The site features more than 3000 books and catalogs on 
   ancient and medieval numismatics, bibliographies, rare 
   and antiquarian books, a monthly book special and an 
   article on book packing. Literature on modern coins, 
   medals, paper money, etc. will be added in the near 

   John's article on book packing is a *must-read* for both 
   buyers and sellers of books.  Buyers should insist on 
   proper packing. Personally, I am always reluctant to make 
   a second purchase from any seller who ships me a poorly 
   packed book. Those who buy books on eBay should give 
   negative feedback for any seller who doesn't treat 
   numismatic literature with respect. John's article tells 
   not just WHAT to do, but WHY, and it all makes perfect 
   sense when you think about it.  Plain "common sense", 
   as John says. 


   David J. Davis writes: "I need to correspond with 
   someone who has a good run of Chas. Steigerwalt 
   Fixed Price Lists.  In doing my research on the 1802 
   half dime, I noted that Steigwalt had what seemed to 
   be two different 1802s for sale.  

   In FPL No. 10, May 1887, he listed "A very fine 
   example" for sale at $150.  In FPLs numbers 15, 16 & 
   18, he listed one as, "Good. Extremely rare. 100.00." 
   In my latest purchase, a copy of, FPL No. 28, January 
   1892, he listed, "A good specimen of this extremely 
   rare date. 100.00." (Is this the prior coin with a new 
   description?).  What I want to determine is:  

   The first and last appearance of each coin, using the 
   same description, and whether or not there are other 
   listings that I haven't seen." 


   Speaking of packing books, a couple of years ago I wrote 
   an Asylum article on moving a numismatic library, based 
   on my experiences with moving  my own library three times. 
   Last weekend I helped one of  our subscribers, 
   E. Tomlinson Fort, pack up what he often calls  "The Fort 
   Memorial Numismatic Library"  

   Since he's planning to rearrange his library when he gets 
   into his new house, he cheerfully disregarded all of my 
   anal-retentive box numbering advice.  Where I would have 
   said, "books from THIS shelf of THIS bookcase go in THIS 
   box," Tom's philosophy was, "if it fits in THIS box, then 
   it goes in THIS box."  

   All of which made the task a bit easier, but packing over 
   80 boxes is never easy.  Having visited his new home, I 
   must admit I'm jealous of the spacious room set aside for 
   his office and library.  He and his wife are shopping for 
   busts of Roman Emperors to place atop the shelves, in true 
   classical fashion.  Tom admits he is not the first to use 
   this decorating scheme for a library - can any of you 
   biblophiles identify the famous source for this plan? 


   New subscriber Terry Trantow is "looking for related 
   material and a copy of a catalog of Australian /  
   New Zealand / Tasmania tradesmen tokens of the circa 
   1850-1880 era using Rennik numbers.   Have a Rennik 
   catalog from the 1970's which listed Andrews/Heyde  
   Numbers but not aware of any reference using Rennik 

   Another new subscriber, Ed Krivoniak has the answer: 
   the catalog was updated in 1989:  Skinner, Dion H., 
   Renniks Australian Coin and Banknote Values, published 
   by Renniks Books.  The catalog lists Rennik numbers 
   alongside the older Andrews/Heyde numbers.   Another 
   useful reference is:  Lamphard, William H., Catalogue 
   of New Zealand Coins, Currency, Tokens, Presbyterian 
   Communion Tokens and Bank Notes, published in the New 
   Zealand Numismatic Journal, vol 16, no. 1. 


   Ray Williams writes: "An NJNS member and new E-Sylum  
   subscriber Mike Molnar has a book being published in 
   October.  ... I heard Mike give a mesmerizing  talk 
   about numismatic evidence of the Star of Bethlehem and 
   how scientific evidence backs it up."   From the Press 

   "Could the $50 purchase of an ancient coin by a Rutgers 
   astronomer have unlocked the mystery of the Christmas 
   Star?  For years, scientists have looked, with little 
   success, to astronomical records for an explanation of 
   the magical star that guided the Magi to Christ's manger. 
   Intrigued by the image he found on the latest addition 
   to his coin collection, Michael Molnar thought there might 
   be more to learn by looking, instead, at the teachings of 
   ancient astrologers."  

   The clothbound book has 208 pages, 7 photos, and 24 
   figures.  It will be available in October by calling toll 
   free 1-800-446-9323 to order.  Congratulations, Mike! 


   Not the internet browser kind, but the good old-fashioned 
   stick-it-in-to-hold-your-place kind.  Fotini Hatziefstratiou, 
   a 23-year-old student from Greece is forming a collection of 
   bookmarks from around the world, and has requested our 
   assistance.   "I have a unique and very interesting, in my 
   opinion, collection of about 4000-4500 bookmarks. These 
   bookmarks are from various materials, shapes, countries and 
   styles.  Most of them are advertising ones, those that almost 
   all bookstores, booksellers, libraries, editions, museums, 
   publications, stationary shops and the relevant business or 
   organizations give away free to their clients. The majority 
   of these bookmarks are from Greece, and only few of them are 
   from some other countries all over the world.  The bookmarks 
   included in my collection are usually made from paper, but 
   there are some made from metal, wood, fabric, plastic, and 
   leather.   ... It would be great to add some bookmarks from 
   your beautiful country, which I hope I will visit soon."  

   His email address is    If you care to 
   send him some bookmarks, his mailing address is  

      Fotini Hatziefstratiou 
      Narkisou 1, 
      T.K. 57013, 


   Gail Baker, ANA Director of Education, reports that 
   "the tapes from "The Great Debate" are now safely 
   housed in the ANA Library. Anyone interested in two 
   & one half hours of fascinating dialogue may watch 
   them here in Colorado Springs - for now. We are 
   hoping to be able to circulate them  more widely in 
   the future." 


   The Bank of Canada's web site was recommended to us 
   by Michael Sullivan.  Available on both English and 
   French, the site includes an online museum of Canadian 

  Wayne Homren 
  Numismatic Bibliomania Society  

  The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a 
  non-profit organization promoting numismatic 
  literature.   For more information please see 
  our web site at 
  There is a membership application available on 
  the web site.  To join, print the application and 
  return it with your check to the address printed 
  on the application.   For those without web access, 
  contact Dave Hirt, NBS Secretary-Treasurer, 
  5911 Quinn Orchard Road, Frederick, MD 21701  

  (To be removed from this mailing list 
   write to me at   

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