The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 6, Number 17, April 27, 2003:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2003, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  Among recent new subscribers are Jeff Chapman, courtesy
  of Darryl Atchison, David Andre Levi and returning subscriber
  Peter Mosiondz, Jr.   Welcome aboard, and Welcome back!
  We now have 547 subscribers.  Can we reach 600 by the
  annual meeting of NBS this summer?   Subscribers are our
  best promoters.  If you know someone who might enjoy The
  E-Sylum, just send me their email address and they can review
  it at their leisure.   They can also sign themselves up using the
  instructions at the end of each issue.  This is also the preferred
  to update your subscription when changing email addresses.


  Bob Cochran writes: "The constant quality of the "E-Sylum"
  is such that I take it for granted.  WELL DONE!

  I thought you might like to know that I recently added the
  800th bank/banking history to my reference library.  I include
  the histories of specific NOTE-ISSUING banks (Obsoletes,
  Nationals & or both), as well as histories of banking in a
  particular entity, such as a city, county, state or region.  I
  have them cataloged, using a rather rudimentary program
  - "Mail List Deluxe."  It's functional, but not very flexible -
  or "user-friendly."   If you or any of the E-Sylum subscribers
  have a recommendation of a better cataloging tool for me,
  I'd certainly appreciate hearing about them.  I need to print
  a listing, and the program I'm using does not produce the
  results I'd like."


  Tom Wooldridge writes: "I wonder if someone in the group
  can recommend a reference on medieval Bulgarian coins,
  and also where I might purchase it."


  Dave Bowers at writes:
  "Does anyone known when first there was numismatic
  recognition in print of the 1864 bronze Indian cent with L
  (for Longacre) on the ribbon? An early price list? An
  early auction appearance?

  Peripherally related to this are restrikes of the 1864 L
  Proof cent which, per Rick Snow, were made at a later
  date, say the early 1870s, and novodels of the 1863 L
  cent made in the late 1860s (determined by matching the
  reverse die characteristics with regular Indian cent Proofs).
  The question is this: Did the restrikers realize they were
  making '1863 L' and '1864 L' cents at the time, or was
  it the luck of the draw that, for the 1863 L cent, a with-L
  master die was used (such master dies having been first
  created in summer 1864)?"


  David Fanning writes:  "Richard J. Aldrich, co-editor of the
  British journal "Intelligence and National Security," wrote to
  me with an inquiry that the E-Sylum community may be able
  to help with. Aldrich wrote, "I am an academic historian and
  I am doing a little research on suggestions that the US tried
  to undermine the communist Chinese and the North Vietnamese
  economies by printing counterfeit currency in the Philippines
  at their 'seafront' facility in the 1960s (the British did some of
  this in Asia during WWII).  Do you happen to know of
  anything that has been written about this, or anyone who might
  be able to help me?"   If anyone may be able to assist in pointing
  Aldrich in the right direction, please let me know. Many thanks
  in advance."   [David's email address is


  David Fanning also forwarded this query from Lisa Mao,
  a producer at Indigo Films: "I am currently doing research for
  a documentary we are producing on Fort Knox for the Travel
  Channel and am looking for an historian or expert on the Fort
  Knox gold depository facility.  I noticed that the NBS published
  a book on the US Mint in San Francisco and was hoping that
  your organization might have some suggestions on who to
  contact regarding the Fort Knox site. Are there any experts
  that you can recommend?  Thank you for your time and I look
  forward to your response."

  [Well, NBS didn't publish the San Francisco book, although
   it was mentioned in The E-Sylum.  But we do have experts
   in a lot of areas.  Anyone familiar with Fort Knox history?


  In response to last week's numismatic birthdays item, Len
  Augsberger writes: "Historians have asked if Hitler could
  have risen to power using the name  "Schicklgrueber".
  Would the seemingly comedic name itself have cost him
  enough credibility to hinder his ambition?

  The Three Stooges, well known Jewish entertainers who
  made several anti-Nazi film shorts, occasionally used the
  word "Schicklgrueber" in various contexts and must have
  asked themselves the same question."


  As noted by Dick Johnson and others in previous
  E-Sylum issues, the classic New York City subway
  token is now a thing of the past.  Newsday had a nice
  article in the April 13th issue, the last day the tokens
  were sold. (They may still be used through May 4).

  "It's oftentimes been said that the token was the special
  coinage of New York,"  said Steve Zeitlin, director of the
  New York Center for Urban Folk Culture.",0,6408370.story


  In response to last week's query, Michael Schmidt adds:
  "Not only has the Gobrecht Journal #3 been published,
  but I am almost certain that it is still available from the
  LSCC.   The last "newsletter" I received from them was,
  if I remember correctly, still offering all four volumes."

  [The Liberty Seated Collectors Society (LSCC) address
  is:  Mark Sheldon, Secretary-Treasurer, P.O. Box 261,
  Wellington, OH 44090, USA.  -Editor]

  Nancy Green, Librarian of the American Numismatic
  Association writes:  "The ANA library has two copies of
  Krause's 1991 Auction Prices Realized for loan to ANA

  In response to the earlier queries, Brad Karoleff writes: "I
  recently obtained a copy of one of the Krause auction prices
  realized books that had been missing from my library directly
  from Krause.  Give them a call to see if they have any remaining
  in stock.  It worked for me!

  As for the Gobrecht collective volume, you  can order one
  from John McCloskey.  His address is probably in one of the
  other collective volumes."


  Regarding the book lending policies of the ANS vs ANA,
  Henry Bergos writes: "The ANS Library is staffed by three
  overworked people.  If there were more members/contributors
  to the ANS there might be the ability to circulate books.

  When there are limited requests Frank has an excellent
  reputation for helping people, member or not, with their
  research. On site he is invaluable - including to me who has
  been going there for about 40 years. My favorite institution!"


  In response to Ralf Boepple's query about the 2002
  book, "Os Recumbos de 960 Reis - The 960 Reis
  Overstrikes" by David Andre Levi,  Ron Haller-Williams

  "I have seen this book, and I reckon it's very good - I
  intend to buy a copy myself.  By the way, the title is
  "Os Recunhos ..."    I would suggest Ralf get in touch
  with the author.

  "David is a regular contributor to the "moedas" e-group,
  which focuses mostly on Brazilian numismatics and is
  mostly (but not entirely!) in Portuguese.  Ralf (and others)
  could  join through its "home page" at

  In a message of 12 Aug 02, he says: "The book will be sold
  from 11 Sept. ... it is probable that some dealers are already
  acquiring it  and will sell it.  However, it can be ordered (in
  Brazil only) direct from me, through my personal email,
  which is

  The price will be 70 Reais {ABOUT US$20).  It will have
  a higher price for USA and Europe.  I don't yet know the
  price of Sedex {special, equiv. of FedEx}, which depends
   on the weight of the book {and on the distance, obviously}."

  His messages of 13 & 14
  Aug 02 are also of interest, possibly giving some details not
  mentioned in Westdal's review.

  14 Aug:   [It's English/Portuguese, which I think is called
  simultaneous translation, that is to say, the text in Portuguese
  is in the left-hand column and English on the right,  All the
  tables and captions of photos are in Portuguese, while
  using "numismatic" terms as much as possible. The terms in
  English (tables, captions) can be translated through a small

  There are 212 pages in total, the first 12 are not numbered
   (cataloguing data, acknowledgments, dedication, etc...),
   consequently the last page is {number} 200.  Approximately
  304 photos, that is to say, 304 PAIRS of coins,  between
  originals and restrikes.

  Size: It's larger than a normal book, ... 250mm high by 210mm
  wide {approx. 9.8 inches high by 8.3 inches wide}.  Could be
  a little more or less, I don't remember now.   Paper 115gsm,
  hard cover, coloured dust jacket. A luxury...]

  I don't think there's much more to say, except that in my opinion
  it seems to be more of a necessity than a luxury for those who
  are interested in this series, which includes some Bank of
  England pieces."

  It seems this book has pride of place in Spinks' "books" section
  where it is priced at £30 (that's some $45)  plus  P&P or S&H.
  The page gives some further information, including identifying
  the cover coin and showing the print run (only 500, apparently).

  For those in the U.S. who prefer to order from a domestic
  dealer, Bill Malkmus writes: "I can supply some answers to
  Ralf Boepple's inquiry about two new books mentioned by
  Stu Westdal in the latest Ponterio catalog.   I talked to Stu
  today and he told me that the two books will be stocked by
  Ponterio, although they are not in at the moment.  The "960
  Reis Overstrikes" book will be $50; the Philippine
  counterstamp book will be $125 (both plus shipping).  If he
  has further interest, he can e-mail Stu at
  Keep up the great work!"


  Regarding last week's mention of the discovery of a rare
  "half-ounce silver coin known as the Petra Drachma,"
  Bob Leonard writes: "I might be wrong, but I would guess
  that Hanan Eshel called this coin a "tetradrachma."


  Ray Williams writes: "A year or so ago, I was bidding on a
  Maris book on NJ Coppers.  There was little description to it
  and I bid low (about $15 if I remember).  When I received the
  book in the mail, I found it to be the Ken Morrison half size
  reprint with the half size photographic Maris Plate!  Not only
  was this a great surprise in itself, along with the book was one
  of the full size Maris Plates that Charlie Davis sells.  But the
  icing on the cake was still to come...  Years ago, I had
  communicated with Walter Breen and with his help made a
  chart to convert Maris numbers to Breen numbers and Breen
  numbers to Maris numbers.  This chart was published in the
  Early American Coppers journal Penny Wise and the owner
  of this Maris book thought enough of what I did to include a
  copy of my charts with this book.  I know that at least one
  person used the charts!"


  Alan Luedeking writes: "Here's another little update on Carlos
  Jara's works, about which I've occasionally spouted off in The
  E-Sylum: The book on the Coquimbo mint, which he published
  in a limited edition of only 50 numbered examples in March
  sold out within two days of its announcement in the E-Sylum,
  with the bulk of the orders coming from within the USA and a
  few from Europe and South America.  The ANA library, ANS
  library, and Numismatics International library each have a copy,
  should anyone who missed out wish to consult it.  Now for the
  good news: his long awaited book on the obsidional and necessity
  issues of Valdivia is now ready too. Even more exciting, his
  groundbreaking work on the first issues of the Santiago mint will
  also soon be forthcoming. This work will present the detailed
  original mintage figures for all the silver pillar and early gold
  denominations (fully backed up by the original documentation
  which even the great José Toribio Medina was never able to
  discover, despite much trying) along with previously unknown
  historical information on the operation of this mint, particularly
  the exact chronological identification of the assayers as well
  as other mint employees.

  Also look for a very interesting essay on the 1751 pillar issues
  of Lima, upcoming in the N.I. Bulletin. It would seem Carlos
  has thrown off a promising career as a transportation engineer
  for the love of full-time numismatic research. Of course, youth
  and great discipline make such an undertaking possible, but it
  takes guts too, I think.  Now, a bit more on the Valdivia work:
  Obsidional and necessity issues of Chile were first documented
  by Medina in two different works, his 1902 "Las Monedas
  Chilenas" and his 1919 "Las Monedas Obsidionales Chilenas".
  However, his extensive research did not present enough
  documentation to fully understand the significance and historical
  context of some of these issues, among which two stand out for
  their importance: the obsidional 1 Peso cast coins of Chiloé
  (about which Jara published a monograph in 2000), and the
  Valdivia issues dated 1822. It is no coincidence that the latter
  have remained obscure until recently, not only as concerns their
  history but also as regards their very status as genuine or
  counterfeit. Jara's new, intensively researched book on the
  Valdivia issues explains and presents a great amount of
  heretofore  unpublished original documentation, which not
  only reveals the true nature of these emissions, but also the
  correct interpretation and meaning of the enigmatic APDEVA
  monogram counterstamp that is to be found on some of the

  Parallel to this, an unknown emission of necessity paper money
  is documented, which eventually evolved into the well known
  issues of the 1840's (Pick # S-101 and S-102). This book,
  which is as groundbreaking as Jara's previous work on the
  Coquimbo mint, is now available in a limited edition of just 60
  numbered hardcover examples, thoroughly illustrated, but,
  and here's the rub, this time it's only in Spanish!  Anybody
  wanting one can address an order directly to the author at The books are anticipated to ship
  near the end of May, 2003, from Miami."


  The April 3-9, 2003 issue of Metro, "Silicon Valley's
  Weekly Newspaper" includes a review of an interesting
  book by Paul Collins' titled "Sixpence House: Lost in a
  Town of Books." (Bloomsbury; $23.95 cloth).

  "A few years back, Collins, author of Banvard's Folly...
  and an editor for McSweeney's Books, packed up his wife,
  his young son and about 3,000 books and moved from San
  Francisco to Hay-on-Wye, a little town in Wales that boasts
  two score secondhand and antiquarian bookstores."

  "The real characters in Sixpence House are the books
  themselves. Collins wades through teetering tomes, rescuing
  such orphans as "an 1893 volume titled Current Coins, Picked
  Up at the Railway Station, in which S.Q. Lapius begins with
  the immortal invocation 'Come with me, my numismatic friend ...'"

  Has anyone seen or heard of the Lapius book?  Is it a novel?
  One with a numismatic theme?   I'd never heard of it before
  seeing this reference.   I assume I would have heard of it before
  if it were related to U.S. numismatics - could it be a British


  This week's featured web site is a nice summary of the events
  leading up to the addition of the motto "In God We Trust" to
  United States paper money.  The phrase was added to the
  two-cent piece in 1864.  Numismatist Matt Rothert of
  Arkansas led the effort to extend the motto to U.S. paper
  money.  The site includes images of contemporary newspaper
  articles describing Rothert's campaign, which culminated in
  1955 when the enabling legislation was signed into law by
  President Eisenhower.

  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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