The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 6, Number 15, April 13, 2003:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2003, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  Among recent new subscribers are Robert Rhue, courtesy
  of Andy Lustig.  Welcome aboard!  We now have 544


  Fred Lake writes: "The 68th mail-bid sale of numismatic
  literature by Lake Books has a closing date of April 22, 2003
  and is available for viewing on their web site at

  The sale features a number of special presentations of classic
  American reference materials from the library of George W.
  Bowen.  Ancient Greek, Roman and Jewish coinage is well
  represented in the section devoted to their study.  A number
  of difficult to find "Redbooks" and other guide books are
  offered in the nearly 500 lots in the sale."


  From an April 10th article on the Wired News site:
  "In the three weeks since the start of war in Iraq, sellers of
  bank notes have seen a surge in demand from collectors for
  currency containing images of Saddam Hussein.

  On websites of currency dealers and on eBay, merchants
  say prices, particularly for higher-denomination bank notes,
  have increased appreciably even as the actual buying power
  of the dinar continues to decline.

  George Lindgren, who sells bank notes on eBay, calls it the
  Saddam dinar bubble."

  "Over the last three weeks, Lindgren said he has been
  receiving more than 1,000 dinar-related e-mails a day and
  has slept no more than a few hours each night.

  "I have literally spent almost all day bagging and tagging
  these little dictator notes," Lindgren said in an e-mail.",1367,58402,00.html


  David Klinger writes: "There has been a lot of speculation about
  what is going to happen to the monetary system in Iraq in view
  of the current military operations there. This is from the 9 April
  edition of the "Financial Times" of London:

  "Washington has its own plans for what to do with the monetary
  system in Iraq. Treasury officials say that at present they have
  three phases in mind.

  In the first, for the sake of speed and simplicity, government
  officials and key workers will be paid in dollars, as indeed has
  already happened to local dock workers refitting the port of
  Umm Qasr.

  Second, as early as the next few days, a batch of new "Swiss
  dinars" - the old Iraqi currency still circulating in the Kurdish
  areas - will be printed. US Treasury officials say that the British
  company De La Rue printed the original stock of dinars and
  still has the printing plates, though De La Rue declined yesterday
  to discuss any of its past or future customers.

  In the third phase, a new currency replacing both the Swiss
  dinar and the newer "Saddam dinar" will be circulated."


  Russ Rulau reports that he is at work on the 4th edition of the
  Standard Catalog of United States Tokens 1700-1900 and
  needs some help on the very specialized area of cardboard
  chits of the Civil War period. Most dated pieces of this kind
  carry an 1862 date, but 1861-65 dates are known. The bulk
  of the pieces are undated, but conform in general to the
  illustrations contained in pages 461-469 of the 3rd edition,
  released in 1999.   The new edition is scheduled for release
  in mid-2004. An expanded manuscript for the 4th edition is
  ready. Anyone out there knowledgeable and brave enough
  to proofread it?  Or to report specimens in their own
  collection? If so, contact Russ at or by
  mail at P.O. Box 153, Iola, WI 54945.


  Bob Lyall writes: "Might I make a small amendment to your
  claim that the entire collection of John J Ford Jr. is being sold
  by Stack's?  His West Indian cut/countermarked coins were
  sold by auction in London on the 16th October 1989 by
  Glendinings, after being catalogued by Peter Mitchell of A H
  Baldwin & Sons Ltd (who I assisted).

  The sale did include 7 gold "joes", and 2 guineas,
  countermarked by North American goldsmiths with initials I.B,
  W.T, I.S and script B in addition to 26 West Indian plugged
  and/or countermarked gold coins (mostly joes) and around
  250 silver and billon West Indian coins plus some 70 lots of
  coins countermarked in other countries.

  The evening after the sale was memorable in so much as
  Baldwin's threw a dinner party for the main bidders.  The
  party was held in Rules Restaurant just off the Strand in
  London, a popular venue for Edward, Prince of Wales,
  later Edward VII, to dine Lilly Langtree privately."


  Regarding our recent discussion of "consimilar" coins (those
  bearing the same design on both obverse and reverse), Ken
  Berger writes: "Since the A.R.R.C. Tokens were issued by the
  government for use by the Matanuska Valley residents, they
  could be considered coins with the same obverse & reverse.
  In addition, the Palo Seco Leper Colony Tokens were also
  issued by the government for use by the lepers and therefore
  could also be considered coins with the same obverse &


  Tom Fort, Editor of our print journal, The Asylum, writes:
  "As a few readers may know, each issue of the journal
  Anglo-Saxon England contains a bibliography of works
  published the previous year dealing with Anglo-Saxon
  studies   It occurred to me that a similar idea might be good
  for The Asylum. After all, we are not the only journal to
  publish works on numismatic literature (check out Joel
  Orosz' article in the latest issue of the American Journal of
  Numismatics as an obvious example).  Therefore, it is my
  idea to list in the Summer 2003 issue of The Asylum all
  works dealing with numismatic literature which appeared
  outside of our pages between 2000 and 2003.  To make
  this list even half as complete as I would like, I will need
  much help from E-Sylum readers and their friends.  I would
  like people to look through their libraries and other libraries
  (both public and private) and send me via email any listings
  they can find.  I especially need to hear from readers who
  live abroad and have access to material that is not in English.
  Likewise, those of you familiar with US coinage and writers
  (of which I have little knowledge) will be a big help.

  The listings should have the following:
  For books: Full name of author, full title, place and year of
  For articles: Full name of author, full title of article, full title
  of publication, volume number, issue number (if there is one),
  year of publication, page numbers.

  Things which count: Any work that deals with numismatic
  literature in a substantial way.  If the material in the work is
  not obvious from the title, then please send a brief description
  - no more than two sentences.  For example, there might be
  a book on numismatic aspects of the reign of the emperor
  Vespasian that contains a chapter reviewing the history of the
  scholarship on his coinage. Such a book should be listed.
  Biographies of numismatic writers are welcome, but please
  use some judgment.  For example, W.B. Yeats did write
  a short monograph on Irish coinage, however this was not
  his primary (or even secondary) interest. Unless the work on
  Yeats devotes a substantial chapter, or more, to this work I
  would not include it.  On the other hand, Theodor Mommsen
  wrote a massive book, and a number of articles, on Roman
  Republican coinage. He also used numismatic evidence in a
  number of his other works. A biography on him would be
  acceptable.  Likewise, obituaries of numismatic writers are
  also good.

  Things that I do not want: Notices of publication or literature
  sales, like those that appear in Coin World or Numismatic
  News.  Likewise book reviews that simply give a summary
  of the contents should not be sent.  On the other hand, critical
  book reviews are welcome. I, also do not want to list auction
  sales or fixed price lists. The obvious exception to this are
  publications like the Numismatic Circular and the Rare Coin
  Review which include scholarly articles along with their lists
  of items for sale. Web sites, no matter how good, will not be
  listed because they lack the permanence of the printed page.

  If you know of something and are not certain please contact
  me and I shall let you know. All those who submit material
  will be listed (unless they say otherwise) in the article. I can
  be reached at

  "In 1725 the English Government had proposed to impose a
  debased copper coinage on Ireland; certain individuals
  including Mr. Wood, the manufacturer of the coins, stood to
  make a large profit.  There was an immediate outcry against
  the proposal but repeated representations from politicians and
  public figures in Ireland proved of no avail.   Swift entered the
  controversy with a series of letters written under the name of
  J.B. Drapier. With a mixture of scorn, satire and economic
  sense, the Drapier poured ridicule on the proposed coinage."

  Swift's "Drapier's Letters" have been published on several
  occasions.  I have a copy in the U.S. colonial section of my
  library.   -Editor]


  Dave Surber writes: "My partners and I have produced a
  translation of the Nikola Moushmov's 1912 Bulgarian classic,
  "Ancient Coins of the Balkan Peninsula and Coins of the
  Bulgarian Monarchs", and have put it online at

  It covers ancient Dacia, Moesia, Thrace and Macedonia, plus
  medieval Bulgarian coins.   There are a total of 7460
  numbered types, plus 68 original plates.  It remains a very
  important reference today, as there are many types unlisted
  in the major references.  (For comparison of comprehensiveness,
  in Moushmov's listings for Geta from Nikopolis, there are 43
  types; SNG Copenhagen lists only one.)

  The original plates are being augmented by the insertion of
  examples from the WildWinds DataBank and the inventory, and it is planned for the online
  work to continue to grow, enhanced by continuing additions."


  In the Colonial Coin Collectors Club email forum, Ray
  Williams recently wrote:   "To all my colonial friends:
  I've discussed with C4 members the possibility of preserving
  coin collection inventories in libraries.  I find it a shame that
  we can't go to the library and look at the collection inventories
  of the great early collectors Crosby, Maris, Mickley, Parmelee,
  etc...  We've lost a lot of pedigree information which is of now
  of importance to all of us.   Even in a more modern scenario,
  where did Spiro get his coins from?

  When the time comes and our collections are dispersed, what
  will happen to the information about how our collections were
  assembled?  If we keep good records about our collections,
  and most of us do, I suggest that you make arrangements to
  have your inventories and ledgers deposited at either the C4
  Library or the ANS Library.  This way, future collectors will
  be able to have access and keep pedigree chains intact.  I
  hope that Mike Hodder will do what he can to preserve John
  Ford's papers at ANS.   I believe that the Garrett Collection
  papers are already at the ANS.

  We often think to ourselves, "I'm not a Garrett or a Ford.
  My coins are not world class examples.  I'm no one that
  anyone will remember."   IT DOESN'T MATTER!  For
  the collector 100 years from now, he'd be thrilled just to
  know that an electronic technician, a baker or a stone
  mason owned the coin.   If I discovered the name of a
  previous owner of one of my coins, I'd do what I could to
  learn about him.  I would be thrilled to have a coin owned
  by a farmer from the 1800's!

  What can you do for the good of the hobby?  If your
  inventory is kept in a computer, print a hard copy at least
  yearly and keep it with the coins in the safe deposit box.
  If you have a digital camera, photograph your coins and
  keep the photos with the inventory.   Place a large note
  on the front cover of your papers where to send them if
  someone is dispersing your collection.  That's all it takes.
  Take good notes and include as much info about each
  coin as possible.

  There are some of you out there that have disposed of
  sections of your collections already, and are pursuing
  something else.  Please send the librarian a copy of your
  inventory papers.  There are a number of collections that
  have gone to auction and the collectors are still with us.
  Harry Rescigno (Saccone), Henry Garrett ( Spring
  Quartette), Russ Smith (March Sale) are just a few
  examples of dozens that could probably still help by
  donating a copy of their collection inventories.

  If anyone wants a sample of my inventory, I'm going to get
  a copy of it to the C4 Librarian this month, and you can ask
  Leo to send you a copy of a page.  You can use it as a guide
  and modify the format for your purposes."

  [Ray's suggestion is a good one for bibliophiles, too.
   Wouldn't it be interesting to have an inventory of the
  libraries of the great early collectors?   We U.S. bibliophiles
  are lucky to at least have catalogs of the libraries of folks
  like Ted Craig, Armand Champa, Harry Bass and others.
  And soon we may have a catalog of the Ford library as
  well.   Tom Fort has posted a copy of his detailed library
  inventory on the NBS web site.   If I had an inventory I'd
  probably do the same, but unfortunately I don't have one.
  Who else even HAS an inventory of their libraries? -Editor]


  Leonard Augsburger writes: "Sometime somebody should
  write an article about coin shows on the radio - apparently
  this was a somewhat common thing in the 1930s.  But since
  I brought up the subject, I did a little preliminary legwork.
  NIP gives some promising leads by entering the word "radio",
  and here are a few others I know of:

  [NIP is the Numismatic Indexes Project of the Harry Bass
   Foundation.  Go to this address.  -Editor ]

  * William Brimelow had a radio show for coins in Elkhart, IN
    - this is mentioned several times in the Numismatic Scrapbook
    c. 1937 & also Hobbies magazine of the same period

  * Edward Weikert, Jr. had a letter to the editor in the May
     1943 Numismatist and an article in the November 1953
     Scrapbook. In The Numismatist he claims to have given
     radio presentations on numismatic topics.

  Here's the question, & the only way to answer it is to talk to
  some really old collectors - what the heck were they talking
  about on these programs?   Did they bring along a copy of
  the latest Numismatist or club journal and just start reading it?
  These were long before the days of talk radio where you
  could have lots of callers chime in with stuff.  Presumably
  they had to bring a fair amount of material into the studio."

  [I've read of B. Max Mehl's radio advertisements, but I'm
  not familiar with any numismatic radio shows of that era.
  Perhaps one of our readers can shed some light on the

  Somewhere among my Howard Gibbs papers, I believe
  there is a script of a radio show he did one time.  This may
  have been in the 1960's.

  In more recent times, I know that Jules Reiver was a regular
  guest expert on a radio show about coins in Delaware, before
  each of the Delaware Coin Club's coin shows.  Here in
  Pittsburgh, we have "Coin Talk," a half-hour show airing on
  the first Friday of each month at 8pm on KQV 1410AM.
  The show began in January 2003.  Sam Deep is the host,
  and I have been a regular guest expert.   It's not a call-in
  show - we tape it in advance.   The show is underwritten in
  part by the Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists, and
  is supported by five local coin dealer sponsors.


  This week's featured web page is from Ron Wise's World
  Paper money site.  It features images of Iraq currency from
  1941 through 2002.

  Wayne Homren
  Numismatic Bibliomania Society 

Content presented in The E-Sylum is not necessarily researched or independently fact-checked, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.

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