The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 3, Number 6, February 6, 2000:  
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.  
Copyright (c) 2000, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.  


   We have two new subscribers this week: Dan Vial, and  
   Miroslaw Kupczyk of Poland.   Welcome aboard!  This  
   brings our subscriber count to 278.  


   Bob Christie writes: "Do any E-Sylum subscribers have  
   good ideas of how to promote National Coin Week the  
   week of April 16-22?"   Bob can be reached at  


   The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is looking for  
   speakers for this year's ANA Convention in  
   Philadelphia.  Any topic relating to numismatic  
   literature is welcome, but we're especially seeking  
   talks with a Philadelphia theme, such as local  
   dealers, collectors, or numismatic societies.  If  
   interested, please contact Joel J. Orosz at  


   Paul Withers of Galata Coins writes:  No details have come to  
   us yet, largely as George and his wife had no family, but it is  
   with very deep regret that we tell people that George A.  
   Mallis, joint author/compiler of the book on Morgan dollars,  
   died some time around Christmas, shortly after the death of  
   his wife.   

   George was getting on a bit and we often used to joke to him  
   when he was feeling down that he couldn't possibly die as he  
   was almost the bionic man, having had so many bits and parts  

   George was a great guy and a constant source of inspiration to  
   us when writing our book on coin-weights and our book,  
   Lions, Ships and Angels, on coin-weights found in Britain was  
   dedicated to him.  When he got going he was virtually  
   unstoppable, despite his age, and he had many interests  
   besides coins and coin-weights.  He retained his interest in  
   being a consulting engineer until the very last."  


   Bruce Perdue notes that the new web address for the  
   American Numismatic Society is  


   An article by Red Henry in the January 15, 2000 issue of  
   "Penny Wise",  the official publication of Early American  
   Coppers, Inc, traces the life of Anne Willing Bingham, who  
   is believed to be the model for the early U.S. "Draped Bust"  

   The article was inspired by his chance discovery of a  
   book "in a West Virginia junk store."  Written by Robert  
   C. Alberts in 1969, and published by Houghton-Mifflin,  
   the book's title is "The Golden Voyage: The Life and Times  
   of William Bingham, 1752-1804."   Here's an excerpt from  
   Henry's article describing Bingham's wife Anne:   

   "Anne, nicknamed Nancy, grew up in an opulent household,  
   and was given a thorough education in English, foreign  
   languages, music, and other accomplishments considered  
   suitable for young ladies of her day.  She naturally became  
   acquainted with many of the most remarkable people in  
   town (many of whom were her relatives), and during the  
   Revolution, George Washington made his headquarters for  
   some time in the house next door, in which young Anne  
   was a familiar visitor.  By age 16, when she met William  
   Bingham, she was "the most beautiful young woman in  

   Just as the name of Bingham rang a bell in Mr. Henry's  
   mind, the title seemed oddly familiar to me, too.  I wheeled  
   my desk chair a few feet away and plucked a copy of the  
   very book from a shelf.   It had been sitting there for years,  
   but I hadn't made the connection to U.S. coinage.   

   The author, who passed away a few years ago, was a native  
   of Pittsburgh, and I had the pleasure of meeting him once.  I  
   gradually accumulated copies of all his books.  My favorite  
   one is his first, "The Most Extraordinary Adventures of Major  
   Robert Stobo",  whom Alberts describes as "perhaps the least  
   appreciated,  most undervalued hero of our colonial period."   

   Thanks to Mr. Henry, U.S. numismatic researchers have  
   another source of information, and the Bingham book, with its  
   portraits of  Anne Willing Bingham by Gilbert Stuart, will now  
   migrate to my numismatic library.  


   In response to last week's featured web site about the  
   motto "In God We Trust" on U.S. coins, subscriber  
   Leonard Augsburger writes: "Maybe this is off topic, but  
   the verbiage "separation of church and state" appears  
   nowhere in the Constitution.   

   What it does say is that Congress shall make no law  
   regarding the establishment of religion.  The context, the  
   reference, was to the Church of England and to the  
   monarch established as head of both church and state.   

   There is a difference between coinage depicting the motto  
   "In God We Trust" and Bill Clinton declaring himself to be  
   the head of the Christian church in America, and the courts  
   have consistently ruled thus."  


   For at least the next few weeks, The E-Sylum will  
   feature "The Critic's Corner", where we'll put selected  
   numismatic books in the spotlight and critique their key  
   features.   Please note that we're not discussing content,  
   which could be debated endlessly by researchers;  rather,  
   we'll take the bibliophile's perspective.   

   What are the book's best and worst features?  What could  
   have been done to improve it?  Say you were the editor,  
   publisher, or designer of the book in question, and were  
   presented with the manuscript.   What, if anything, would  
   you have done to improve it?   

   Would you have changed the illustrations?  The text?  
   The layout?  The arrangement?  The numbering system?  
   What features could have improved its usability, readability,  
   or reference value?   

   To start things off, I'd like to nominate "Ancient Coin  
   Reference Reviews" by Dennis J. Kroh, Empire Coins,  
   Inc, 1993.  If you have any comments on this popular  
   bibliography, or  would like to nominate other titles for  
   consideration in the future, please write to me at  


   This week's featured web site is the Ottilia Buerger Collection  
   of Ancient and Byzantine Coins at Lawrence University in  
   Appleton, Wisconsin.  "The central theme of the exhibition and  
   its catalogue is that the coins were circulated not only as means  
   of exchange, but also as significant bearers of meaning."   

  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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