The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 6, Number 36, September 7, 2003:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2003, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  Among recent new subscribers are Fred Holabird, courtesy
  of Duane Feisel.  Welcome aboard!  We now have 590


  Fred Lake writes: "Our sale #70 closes on Tuesday, September
  16, 2003 at 5:00 PM EDT. You can view the sale at"


  George Kolbe writes: "I thought that E-sylum subscribers might
  like an update concerning the first auction sale of the John J.
  Ford, Jr. Library.  To be held in association with Stack's, the
  sale will take place on Tuesday, June 1, 2004 at the Mission
  Inn, Riverside, California, a National Historical Landmark
  Hotel ( The Mission Inn is about half
  way between Crestline (where lot viewing will be held on the
  days preceding the sale), and Long Beach (where the Long
  Beach Coin Convention will begin the day after the sale). The
  Mission Inn is about an hour by car from Los Angeles
  International Airport, and about ten minutes from the new
  Ontario International Airport. Riverside is a large city (approx.
  300,000 residents) and offers a wide array of lodging and
  recreational activities.  I plan to start cataloguing the Ford
  library in a few weeks and I will submit a report every week
  or two about interesting things that will be in the sale.  I
  recently came across, for example, the original invoice from
  Captain John Haseltine to William H. Woodin for the two
  unique $50 gold patterns now held by the Smithsonian
  Institution, along with papers relating to the circa 1910
  litigation concerning patterns, including an original affidavit
  from Haseltine."


  Bob Merchant (bobm at writes:  "Perhaps an
  E-Sylum subscriber can help me with this:   I am trying to
  locate a Spink (or Spink America) auction catalog from 1998
  that contained an important collection of Haiti coinage.  I do
  not know what the date of the sale was.  I am also interested
  in other auction catalogs that contained Haiti coinage.  Can
  anyone help?"


  Donn Pearlman writes: "Thanks for the kind words about my
  photography (The E-Sylum: Volume 6, Number 32, August 10,
  2003).  I only had about 60 seconds to take the photo, and I
  was using -- for the first time -- a two-week old camera, a
  Nikon Coolpix 4300 digital.   I was amazed and delighted my
  close up of the Walton 1913 Liberty Head nickel came out so

  Only hours later did I learn I should have taken a shot of the
  reverse, too.  It seems a crucial diagnostic for determining
  authenticity involves an element on the reverse.

  One correction to your article about the five 1913 nickels in
  Baltimore.  There apparently are at least TWO surviving
  numismatists who had seen all five coins together prior to the
  historic reunion in Baltimore in July.  Eric Newman, mentioned
  in your article, and Art Kagin, who saw the five together in the
  late 1930s or early '40s prior to the "set" being broken up."


  Denis Loring writes: "In a recent Coin world article, Dan
  Friedus gave a list of significant auctions of certain Colonial
  series.  I found it valuable research info, and thought it would
  be terrific if such a list existed for all appropriate series, say
  copper through 1857, silver through 1891, gold through 1907,
  and some specialties.  I have to believe that within the
  E-Sylum subscriber list, we've got the knowledge base to
  produce such a list.

  Here's a first shot at possible series for which we should list
  the three or four most significant sales:

  Mass. silver
  Mass. copper
  Conn. copper
  NJ copper
  Vermont copper
  Washington pieces
  Fugio cents
  half cents
  large cents 1793-1814
  large cents 1816-1839
  large cents 1840-1857
  half dimes 1794-1837
  half dimes 1837-1891
  dimes 1796-1837
  dimes 1837-1891
  quarters 1796-1838
  quarters 1838-1891
  halves 1794-1807
  halves 1807-1839
  halves 1839-1891
  dollars 1794-1804
  dollars 1836-1839
  dollars 1840-1873
  dollars 1873-1885
  gold dollars 1849-1889
  gold $2-1/2 1796-1839
  gold $2-1/2 1840-1907
  gold $3 1854-1889
  gold $5 1795-1807
  gold $5 1807-1838
  gold $5 1839-1908
  gold $10 1795-1804
  gold $10 1838-1907
  gold $20 1850-1907
  territorial gold
  CA small denom. gold
  hard times tokens
  civil War tokens


  Howard A. Daniel III writes: "While at the recent 2003 ANA
  Convention, I was approached by Richard Kaminski.  He read
  in "World Coin News" about a "short snorter" I had bought and
  had one he wanted me to see.  He handed me an envelope and
  inside it was a letter and the left half of a United States Series
  1917 2 Dollars note.

  The letter is dated "Friday -March 18th" but no year, but he
  said it was sometime in the 1960s.  The second paragraph has;
  "My reservation of the Bar dinner is enclosed as well as the
  recipe we talked about in the even you do not have it as hand
  and also a short snoter for Richard."

  A "short snoter"?  I reread it and the second word is "snoter."
  I told him it was not what I had written about and was
  something completely new to me.  He asked if it had any value
  and I told him I had no idea but we could go visit a dealer on
  the bourse.

  Leo May is one of the most knowledgeable dealers about
  "short snorters" and we found him.  Leo read the letter and
  looked at the half note with the same disbelief as myself.  I
  said "snoter" must be an old American slang word that we
  had not yet heard about in numismatics.  He agreed but he
  did not like my pronunciation of the word because it sounded
  like something from my nose.  He wanted to emphasize the
  "note" in the middle of the word.  I agreed this was much better
  and I would research the word.

  Richard wanted to sell the piece and the letter, so I asked
  Leo for a value.   Leo mentioned a value and Richard
  offered it to me.  I agreed to buy it but only for a "Bank Note
  Reporter" article and to donate it to the ANA Museum.
  Richard agreed and I paid him.

  The primary languages for "snoter" appear to be English,
  Scottish and Irish slang.   Within them, "Snoter" was
  connected to babies with what came out of their noses, but
  there were also a reference within the Royal University of
  Scir-Hafoc about someone teaching ten or more times.
  Then there is a reference to the "Snoter Stone", which is a
  historical site.

  Does any E-Sylum reader know this word or have a reference
  to it?  I will keep the letter and the half note until after the
  article is published so if you want a copy of both, I can send
  it to you.  Then I will mail it to Larry Lee, ANA Curator, as
  a donation to the ANA collection.  This will allow future
  researchers to find it if they ever run across "snoter" in their

  Please contact this editor and/or me at
  Howard at if you know anything or
  want to guess about "short snoter."


  In response to last week's request, Joe Boling writes:
  "My abstract for ANS, NL136: COX, TERRY, with SAM
  WITHERS. Stocks and Bonds of North American Railroads:
  collectors' guide with values. Port Clinton, Ohio, BNR Press
  1995. 256pp illus. ISBN 0-931960-46-0.

  8559 certificate types and varieties, from hundreds of railroads
  (all known issues from over 17,200 railroads known to have
  existed in North America), are listed, described, and valued.
  Almost 50 pages of background to collecting these certificates,
  including thumbnail biographies of over 230 prominent issuers
  and signers of certificates, supplement the catalog listings.

  Additional info of interest to the bibliophile: 4to perfect bound
  (illustrated card covers).

  The listings are alphabetical by company name, so there is no
  way to isolate (for enumeration) the Canadian listings.


  Dan Gosling's topic of the week is: Plagiarism
  He writes: "Can anyone provide numismatic examples of
  blatant plagiarism and the penalties levied against the plagiarist?
  I ran across an obvious copy of an early Charlton Canadian
  Coin Catalogue in the Bank of Canada Currency Museum
  Library last year.  Inside was an interesting letter advising
  the author to cease and desist."


  Kavan Ratnatunga writes: "The following link
  documents eBay auction activity that should be of
  interest to E-Sylum readers. [NOTE: the page has many
  images and takes time to load. -Editor]

  This is a complicated issue, but maybe a large organization
  like ANA should be able to maintain a educational website
  and request eBay to send that URL to every buyer of a coin
  on a "Private Auction"

  I find it amazing to find Bidiots paying a total of $14,900 to
  buy 80 replica coins Private Auctioned on eBay as genuine.
  On the long term it can only hurt the numismatic market."


  This week I came across an interesting item in a paper
  money collection.  It was accompanied by an undated article
  which appears to be from Coin World circa early 1960s.
  It's a $5 "specimen" note produced by an inventor hoping to
  sell his idea to the U.S. government.

  "The dollars are "reversible banknotes," $1, $5, $10 and $20
  bills of a copyrighted design that has the same general
  appearance front or back, right-side-up or up-side-down.
  Invented by Rene Laflamme, a Hull, Quebec pharmacist,
  "reversible" money made its first appearance earlier this year
  as $1 notes on the mythical "Bank of Cadana," and the design
  was submitted for the consideration of Canada's central bank."

  Has anyone seen or heard of these before?"


  A web page tells the following tale of a none-too-bright bank
  robber in San Francisco.  No source is cited, so it's anyone's
  guess if the story is true, but it's amusing nevertheless.

  "A man, wanting to rob a downtown Bank of America, walked
  into the branch and wrote "this iz a stikkup. Put all your muny
  in this bag."  While standing in line, waiting to give his note to
  the teller, he began to worry that someone had seen him write
  the note and might call the police before he reached the teller
  window. So he left the Bank of America and crossed the street
  to Wells Fargo. After waiting a few minutes in line, he handed
  his note to the Wells Fargo teller. She read it and, surmising
  from his spelling errors that he was not the brightest light in the
  harbor, told him that she could not accept his stickup note
  because it was written on a Bank of America deposit slip and
  that he would either have to fill out a Wells Fargo deposit slip
  or go back to Bank of America.

  Looking somewhat defeated, the man said "OK" and left. The
  Wells Fargo teller then called the police who arrested the man
  a few minutes later, as he was waiting in line back at Bank of


  This week's featured web pages are about postage currency
  contributed to an 1873 time capsule in the Rochester, NY
  Old City Hall building.  "The copper box, measuring one foot
  by one foot by one foot, was retrieved on September 11,

  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.

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.  Visit the Membership page. Those wishing to become new E-Sylum subscribers (or wishing to Unsubscribe) can go to the following web page link.

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