The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 7, Number 05, February 1, 2004:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2004, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  John and Nancy Wilson of Ocala, FL write: "We  received
  sad news from Bob Hurst, a Florida United Numismatists
  Board member.  He received news that Tim Prusmack passed
  away on January 26, 2004.  This is extremely sad news as we
  talked to Tim the day before and he said he was doing well.
  He sounded good and was excited about the future.  He said
  that he had recently talked to ANA Convention Manager
  Brenda Bishop and was looking forward to having a table in
  Pittsburgh for the ANA Convention.

  He also was excited about FUN having the big 50th Anniversary
  show next year.  He said that his hands were almost ready to
  start producing another set of the 25 cent state series.  He was
  looking forward to doing an extra Florida quarter note that had
  his design but lost.  He also mentioned the possibilities of being
  selected to do work for the U. S. Mint.  His doctor gave him
  permission to travel to the mint if he was selected.

  What a great loss to all of us and his family.  He will be missed
  greatly by his many friends from coast to coast.  All of our
  prayers and thoughts are with his parents Armand and Florence,
  along with the rest of the Prusmack family.   His great work on
  designs of banknotes will be a lasting memory for the Mozart
  of Money Artists."

  [Tim's web site is  For more
  information about Tim and his artwork, see the December
  1998 COINage magazine article on his web site:
  "Bureau of Engraving and Prusmack" by Kari Stone:

  The Wilsons also forwarded this obituary for Tim
  from a Fort Pierce, FL newspaper:

  "Tim Prusmack died Jan. 26, 2004. He excelled in reproducing,
  by hand, complicated antique money, long-ago bank  notes
  and self-designed artistic money.  Mr. Prusmack was president
  of the Treasure Coast Coin Club for six years.  He was one-time
  New York junior golf champion.  Survivors include his parents,
  Dr. Armand J. Prusmack and Florence Syrewicz; brother Ajon;
  and sister Nancy. Memorial contributions may be made to the
  Cleary School for the Deaf, 301  Smithtown Blvd., Nesconset,
  NY 11767.  SERVICES: Arrangements are by Yates Funeral
  Home, Port St. Lucie."      -Editor]


  Tom Fort, editor of our print journal, writes: "Here are the
  contents for the Fall 2003 issue of The Asylum, which is now
  on its way to the printer:

  "Numismatic Literature of Western Pennsylvania Numismatic
  Society Members before the Second World War,"
  by Wayne K. Homren

  "Town of Books," by Russell A. Hibbs

  "George Kolbe and the California Wildfires,"
  by Wayne K. Homren and others

  "Mendacity Revisited," by Myron Xenos"


  Regarding the photo of attendees at the NBS meeting at
  the recent FUN show in Florida,  Craig Eberhart writes:
  "It's me in the photo!"    We've now added a proper
  caption for the photo on our web site.

  See the picture at:
  FUN Photo


  Someone who could not attend the FUN show this year
  was "Mr. FUN" himself, centurion Bob Hendershott.  I was
  thrilled to attend Bob's 100th birthday party  - I believe it was
  at the ANA convention in Portland in 1998.

  Dave Harper writes: "Bob was not at the FUN show. His
  daughter said that they didn't want him to travel there because
  he would have had to change planes.  Later in the show I
  learned that he had pneumonia. It was not a good period for

  We wish Bob well and wouldn't be surprised to hear him
  making plans to attend next year's 50th anniversary show.


  Darryl Atchison writes: "Dear Friends:  On behalf of the
  Canadian Numismatic Bibliography Review Committee I wish
  to apologize to those individuals who have already subscribed
  to our publication for the lengthy delay in publication.

  We had originally hoped to have the text finished in time for
  Christmas (2003) or soon thereafter. Unfortunately a series of
  computer and technical problems that were completely beyond
  our control - including one complete hard-drive failure - has
  put us about two-three months behind schedule. At present our
  proofreaders are still reviewing the manuscript and this process
  is going somewhat slower than we had originally envisioned.

  Having said this, we would like to assure everyone who is
  interested in this text - particularly those who have already sent
  in pre-paid orders - that we are working as quickly as we can to
  publish the results of our ten-year project. Unfortunately, as
  everyone connected with this project is a part-time volunteer
  (including the authors, proof-readers and technical advisers)
  we cannot devote as much time on a day-to-day basis as we
  may like and we can only request your further patience and

  Having said all of this, it is our now sincerest hope that we
  will have the text finished in time for Easter barring any more
  unforeseen difficulties.  Should there be any further developments
  or delays we will keep you advised.

  In the meantime, should anyone have any questions or
  comments they can contact either Ron Greene at
  ragreene at or myself at atchisondf at
  and we will do our best to answer any concerns.

  Once again, please accept our sincerest apologies for the
  delay and any inconvenience that this may have caused."

  [Anything worth having is worth waiting for.  We wish the
  project members good luck as they work toward completion.


  Bowers and Merena Galleries of Louisiana (no longer
  associated with Q. David Bowers) has issued a new
  dealer organ titled "Numisma."  Issue No. 1 is dated
  January 2004 and contains a review of David K.
  Watson's "History of American Coinage" (The
  Kickerbocker Press, New York, NY, 1899. xix,
  278 pages) by B&M's Senior Numismatist, Mark

  QUIZ QUESTION:  How many previous numismatic
  periodicals have been named Numisma?  When were
  they issued and by whom?


  As mentioned in earlier E-Sylum issues, John Adams
  is leading a detailed survey "to determine the known
  extant population of the 12 different Comita Americana
  medals from the 18th century."  A detailed article by
  Paul Gilkes appears in the February 9, 2004 issue of
  COIN WORLD (p3).


  The same issue of COIN WORLD has an interesting
  column by David Alexander on "Wound Badge" issued
  to survivors of the July 20, 1944 attempt on the life
  of Adolf Hitler.  Col. Claus Schenck von Stauffenberg,
  had access to Hilter in his forest headquarters, called
  Wolfschanz (Wolf's Lair).  Stauffenberg placed a
  suitcase bomb under a conference table at a meeting.
  The blast killed four, but only injured Hitler.

  "The 20 Juli Wound Badge was a .800 fine silver
  oval, 42.7 by 35.5 millimeters, with flat back solid
  construction and a hinged tunic pin."

  See the following web page for an image of the medal
  and list of the people present at the time of the incident.


  [Much was written in The E-Sylum and elsewhere
  about the "Great Debate" between Ted Buttrey and
  Mike Hodder which took place at the 1999 convention
  of the American Numismatic Association near Chicago,
  IL.  The subject of the debate was the status of several
  western and Mexican gold assay bars.  See The E-Sylum
  v2n33-36 (August 16, 1999 - September 5, 1999) and
  later issues.  -Editor]

  John M. Kleeberg writes: "Followers of "the Great Debate"
  will be aware that it has several aspects besides Western
  Gold Bars: notably, the authenticity of Mexican Gold Bars
  that emerged onto the market in the 1950s.  Professor
  Buttrey's position on the Western Gold Bars was confirmed
  in the Numismatist in August 2003, when Holabird, Evans
  and Fitch condemned the Lilly-Smithsonian Justh & Hunter
  bar and questioned the authenticity of the Lilly-Smithsonian
  Parsons bar.

   I have just acquired (although the introduction is signed
  August 2003) a new book that throws more light on the
  Mexican bars: Alan K. Craig and Ernest J. Richards,
  Spanish Treasure Bars from New World Shipwrecks
  (West Palm Beach: En Rada Publications, 2003).
  Professor Alan Craig is probably known to readers of
  The E-Sylum as the author of three books about the coin
  collections of the State of Florida from the 1715 Plate Fleet
  and other sources.  Ernest Richards is a longtime researcher
  on shipwrecks.

  The book is a path-breaking study of genuine Spanish
  colonial bars, but perhaps the most interesting material comes
  in chapter 12 on falsifications.  The authors worked
  independently of Professor Buttrey and do not seem to be
  aware of his 1974 and 1996 articles condemning the Mexican
  gold bars: thus, they say that the first appearance of one of the
  Mexican bars was as lot 2093 of the 1975 ANA sale.  This is
  incorrect: the earliest appearance I have been able to trace was
  when Paul Franklin of Massapequa Park, Long Island
  (Franklin died in March 2000) exhibited a bar at the meeting
  of the Brooklyn Coin Club on September 1, 1954
  (Numismatist 1954, p. 1214).  Photographs of the Mexican
  bars were first published in Robert Nesmith's 1958 book,
  Dig for Pirate Treasure, and then appeared in Harry Rieseberg,
  Treasure of the Buccaneer Sea (1962; Rieseberg even claimed
  to be the salvor!) and the 1964 Encyclopedia Britannica,
  before the Smithsonian acquired a whole slew of these bars in
  1967 as part of the Lilly Collection.

  Craig and Richards' conclusions, nonetheless, are even more
  trenchant than those of Professor Buttrey (see pages 148 and
  149): "outrageous 'in your face' gold and silver ingots" truly
  outrageous concoction. These bars are being made with
  dates between 1740 and 1746 integrally cast into the bars
  along with a conspicuous legend in large, modern font letters
  reading: HISP crowned shield ET ID. They are the product
  of corrupt people with criminal intent.  I have been engaged in
  my own research on the Western and Mexican bars, and I, too,
  have concluded that the bars are false.  In light of these recent
  publications, Alan Weinberg's announcement that the
  Smithsonian is taking down its exhibits of these bogus bars is
  welcome news indeed."


  James CD. Spilman writes: "The long-awaited CD of Colonial
  Newsletter Back Issues #1 through #103 is now ready for
  shipment.  Price is $65.00 postpaid within the United States
  ONLY.  Please send check or Postal Money Order to:

  The Colonial Newsletter Foundation, Inc.
  P.O.Box 4411
  Huntsville, AL 35815"


  Bob Merchant writes: "The Thomas Warner communion
  token collection was sold by the Chapman Brothers in 1884
  - "The Warner Sale".  The entire communion token collection
  was sold as a single lot.  I am trying to find out what the lot
  number was, and who purchased it.   I have been able to
  trace this collection from the 1940's to the present day, and
  would like to complete the pedigree from 1884 to the 1940's.
  Can any E-Sylum readers help?  Thank you."


  Barb Anwari writes: "Thanks - I did hear from Dan Freidus!
  I found an entry on "Granby Token" in a 1901 reference book;
  as it was the first brush with the term, I did some online
  research. It appeared there's a paucity of documentation, so
  I passed along my finding to Mr. Freidus - the entry says John
  Higley crafted the Granby Token, minted 1737 & 1739, and
  it described the markings and verbiage just as I found it on
  your site. I hope this helps; I am a features writer and
  book/prints collector myself, with a great interest in history.
  If I can (re)capture information, I'm delighted."

  [It's nice to know people are finding our web site and
   also finding it useful.  -Editor]


  Dick Johnson writes: "Frequently asked questions on medal
  collecting are now on the Medal Collectors of America
  website, thanks to webmaster David Boitnott.

  I would welcome any other basic questions a new medal
  collector (or the public) might ask.  If you have a spare
  moment check out:
  Medal Collectors FAQ"


  John M. Kleeberg writes: "Dick Johnson wrote me and
  asked that I post more information on Peter Rosa (1926-1990).
  Much information about Rosa can be found in Wayne Sayles'
  book, Classical Deception, which catalogues Rosa's copies of
  ancient coins.  In the Colonial Newsletter for April 2002  I
  published what information I could gather about Rosa's copies
  of colonial and territorial coins.  Les Elam, Bill Metcalf, Eric
  Newman, Ken Bressett and Wayne Sayles made many helpful
  suggestions that went into that article.

  Rosa worked for the stamping and casting firm of
  Taylor Industries, with offices at 250 West Broadway
  and a manufactory on Staten Island; he resided in the
  Bronx.  His firm, the "Becker Manufacturing Company,"
  was called that because he saw himself as the heir to
  the German diesinker (and friend of Goethe) Carl
  Wilhelm Becker, whose copies of ancient coins (and
  early thalers and siege pieces) can be so deceptive.
  The name may have also been chosen for a second
  reference to ancient coins: its initials are "BMC,"
  which in numismatic literature refers to the British
  Museum Catalogue.

  People who prepare copies often do not use traditional
  minting technology, but adapt the technology they know
  best.   This makes it difficult to unravel how the
  copies were made.  What I think Rosa did was to make
  a cast of the original coin using dental alginate.  He
  then used the dental alginate to make a metal positive
  copy.  The positive copy was used to make one to one
  transfer dies.  He would touch up the die by hand.
  One method he used was to strike each side of the coin
  individually, out of sheets of lead; he would trim off
  the scissel and solder together the two remaining
  pieces.  The lead would then be covered over with a
  metallic paint.  Later he would cover the lead with a
  thin sheet of silver, so the obverse would appear to
  be a silver coin, but one would see it was lead when
  one turned it over.  Note that Rosa's method results
  in coins that have elements of both a cast and a
  struck copy; one of those instances where the old
  joke, "the obverse is cast but the reverse is struck,"
  is true.  It is possible, however, that the Rosa
  pieces that show this treatment date from the 1980s,
  when he sold uniface pieces because the numismatic
  press would no longer accept his advertisements for
  two sided copies; the uniface pieces were then
  soldered together by subsequent owners.  An odd thing
  about the Rosa dies is that they are much larger than
  the coins they struck; the coin is a small incuse
  portion in the center of the die. Rosa had access to a
  Janvier lathe that allowed him to blow up and reduce
  designs: thus he could create multiples and fractions
  of coins where only one denomination was known.  He
  also had some method of creating a collar die, because
  the reeding I have seen on his territorial gold coins
  (notably a Kellogg $20) is excellent.  Wayne Sayles
  told me of another example of Rosa's ability to apply
  designs to the edge: he has seen Rosa copies of
  British Museum coins where Rosa provided a lettered
  edge giving the BMC number of the original.

  For the World of Coins Exhibit that was installed in
  1983, the American Numismatic Society for security
  purposes had Rosa make copies of gold coins and
  displayed the copies (properly labeled as such).  The
  Rosa copies were easily recognizable by their bright
  orange color.

  Although his California private gold pieces are not
  deceptive in their appearance; they are made out of
  base metal, and have that bright orange color; he
  also struck territorial gold pieces in copper.  An
  example is a Kellogg & Co. double eagle of 1854.  The
  copper variety can be ascribed to Rosa because of
  certain defects that also appear on the goldine
  versions: pimples along the cheekbone and a straight,
  horizontal raised cut in the middle of the neck.  A
  researcher who is not careful might think the Rosa
  copper fake was an unreported Kellogg pattern.

  The 1804 large cent is an interesting discovery.  I
  had not hitherto known that Rosa made copies of
  federal coins.  Since it is uniface, it may be one of
  his 1980s products.

  A lot of Rosa copies are being sold on the Internet at
  present; many are second and third generation casts
  made from Rosa's first generation copies.  Rosa is one
  of the leading sources of the New Hampshire 1776 WM
  copy, which causes so much trouble.  Just the other
  week I saw one posted as genuine where the consignor
  observed that the white metal base was visible below
  the copper patination: this, of course, is not an
  eighteenth century technique, but is one of the
  techniques used by Rosa.

  Eric Newman found a Rosa price list in his files that
  listed colonial copies, numbered from 2 through 189;
  copies of an 8 reales and 8 escudos; and two
  territorial gold copies (including a Parsons bar).
  Many numbers were missing, since those pieces had
  already sold out.  I published this in my Colonial
  Newsletter article.  I hope that people will dig up
  more price lists and Rosa advertisements so that we
  can produce a complete listing of Rosa?s colonial and
  territorial (and federal) copies.   I know that the Colonial
  Coin Collectors Club at one point was photographing
  copies to compile a database.  Richard D. Kenney?s
  pamphlet on the classic struck colonial copies is helpful,
  but there are many additional copies that need to be listed.
  The ANS has tray after tray of colonial copies.

  Does anyone know who made the copies for the Copley
  Coin Company in Boston in the early 1960s?  They
  resemble Rosa's work, but could have been made by
  someone else."


  Steve Pellegrini, in submitting the following item on the first
  John J. Ford sale catalog, writes: "If you need an item for a
  future newsletter feel free to use this if you care to.   I can
  imagine how much work & time must go into producing a
  weekly newsletter. Hope my occasional purple rambling at
  least gives you some back-up material. I think you know how
  much your Monday letters mean to us all. I think that the
  steady stream of new members says it all."

  On the phone earlier this week, John Adams asked, "I don't
  know how you get the E-Sylum out each week."   Well,
  sometimes I don't know, either....  But one secret is that a lot
  of the submissions come in on Monday, and I cut and paste
  them into the draft immediately, and edit them right away if I
  have time before calling it a night.  By Thursday most of the
  week's material is in place, at least crudely.

  There is no file of backup material.  If I get it, I publish it
  immediately.   I once tried holding things back for the "rainy
  day pile" but one day decided it was too much bother.
  Besides, I figured, the more material in one week's issue, the
  more there will be for readers to comment on the next week.
  That thought has borne out week after week, although not
  always according to expectations.  Some items I'm sure will
  generate a lot of response bring nothing.  And some of the
  most innocuous-seeming items will generate extremely
  interesting responses from unexpected quarters.  That's the
  joy of it all - you never know where the train of thought
  will take us, but ride never ceases to be interesting.  The
  E-Sylum readership is an fascinating bunch, and I'm happy
  and honored to be the focal point bringing it all together.

  The bulk of my work takes place in the evening after my
  wife and kids are in bed, which gives me special empathy
  with William F. Gable, whose coin collection was sold on
  May 27-29, 1914 by S. H. Chapman.  Gable was not only
  a numismatist but a bibliophile. Gable (1856-1921) owned
  a tremendous collection of books, manuscripts and autographs,
  which was sold in several sales by the American Art Association
  of New York, beginning in 1924.  The introduction to the first
  sale (November 5-6, 1923 states:

  "Many and beautiful were the tributes paid to him by his
  thousands of friends.   Few, however, of these friends knew of
  his great and varied collection of books and manuscripts of
  literary and historic interest. This was due mostly to the fact that
  the hours spent in collecting the books and letter, now about to
  be sold, -- the happiest hours of William F. Gable's life -- were
  taken from those generally allotted to sleep.  It had been his
  custom, from the years of his early youth, to sleep only four or
  five hours each day....  Those hours of the night, during which
  most men slept, William F. Gable read and reread his prized
  literary possessions, wrote letters to his many book-dealer
  friends, read catalogues of sales, and lovingly filled out folders
  for his autograph letters."



  Steve Pellegrini writes: "I'm curious to know the PRL in the
  recent Fred Lake Sale for the Oct/'03 Stack's catalogue of
  Part I of the John J. Ford, Jr. Collection.  I already know that
  my bid for it was unsuccessful. It seems this 3 month old
  catalogue has become, in the words of another Numis Dealer,
  "An instant rarity."  On going out in search of another copy I
  felt lucky to get a lead for an unpriced copy which turned out
  to be priced at around $100.  Too much? Sounds like it, but
  who knows?  I do know that this is a unique and uniquely
  important collection.  I believe this work will be of lasting
  value to not only to coin collectors but also to historians,
  curators, certainly to professional numismatists and dealers in
  US collectibles.

  [The Ford sale catalog was lot A40 in the Lake Books
  January 20th sale.  According to the prices realized on the
  web site, the lot brought $55  -Editor]

  Ford's love of history and research, his demanding
  connoisseurship, vast numismatic expertise, acquaintances &
  plain old being in the right place at the right time have resulted
  in something more than a great coin collection.  It is a vast
  organized repository of tangible connections with our history.
  Walter Breen used the phrase 'coiner's caviar' to describe the
  rarest and choicest survivors of our early copper coinage.
  But the word caviar, besides its images of exclusivity and
  superior quality may also convey the image of a densely
  bunched monochrome uniformity - to me the very definition
  of a certain type of 'pop top' US coin collecting. A style of
  collecting which results in a side-by-side repetition which
  wears on the eye and curiosity ? regardless of the beauty or
  rarity of the individual coins. Too often when viewing these
  complete collections of gem 'series sets', my eyes begin to see
  only a monotonous, uniform progression of matched coins
  marching across the page in dated lock step - first year of
  issue to the last. Ford's choices of coins, tokens and medals,
  on the other hand, stop the eyes short at every step. We can't
  help but ask, which came first, the story or the coin?  For each
  choice example is either a highlight of America's story or an
  illumination of some obscure nook of her story now rescued
  and conserved that we may consider and enjoy at our leisure.
  Each item, at the very least, hints at its history like a long buried
  signpost pushed up from the compost.  A history which must
  lay deeply buried indeed for Ford not to have been able to dig,
  worry or excavate it from its place in time's midden.

  I'm sure that Stack's will enjoy a rush of new yearly subscribers
  to their auction catalogues. A way, hopefully, to insure the next
  Stack's catalogued installment of the Ford Collection won't end
  up costing more than some of the items it features. That's my
  plan at least. One thing for sure is that I, like so many others,
  intend to have in my library a record of this treasure trove of our
  history.  We can safely assume that once sold nobody ever,
  anywhere will be able to duplicate the accomplishment of the
  John J. Ford, Jr. Collection."


  In an American Numismatic Society press release, Sebastian
  Heath writes: "In conjunction with the National Bank of
  Romania, the American Numismatic Society is pleased to
  make available the text of "The History of Coins in Romania"
  by Octavian Iliescu. This work is available for download as a
  Microsoft Word document from
  "The History of Coins in Romania"."


  David Fanning submitted the NBS web site to a page
  of book-related organizations maintained by Oak Knoll
  Press of New Castle, DE.   From the Oak Knoll marketing

  "As part of Oak Knoll's continuing efforts to promote books
  and the book arts we have devoted part of our web site  to providing a list of over 70
  book related Societies and Organizations.  This list runs
  from A to Y (we didn't find any Z) and maybe there is one
  on the list that you haven't heard about.  They all have links
  to the relevant web sites so take some time to browse the
  list and follow a few links.

  The direct link to the Societies and organizations page is:
  Societies and Organizations.


  Dick Gaetano forwarded the following press release
  from Odyssey Marine Exploration with a project update
  on their SS Republic reclamation effort.

  "Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc., a leader in the field
  of deep ocean shipwreck exploration, continues to
  excavate the SS Republic, a ship that sank in 1865 with
  a large cargo of coins. To date, more than 17,000 coins,
  with a total face value of $54,500 (approximately 14,230
  silver and 2,950 gold coins) and over 750 other artifacts
  have been recovered. The recovered coins represent
  approximately 14% of the "$400,000 in specie" (face
  value) historical records indicate was on board the Republic
  when she sank.

  National Geographic Television and Film has been following
  the expedition since the beginning. Principal photography was
  completed last week for the program's planned television
  broadcasts on Dateline NBC and "National Geographic
  Ultimate Explorer" on MSNBC.  The airdate will be
  announced when it is confirmed.

  "We're looking forward to sharing the Republic story with
  television audiences worldwide via the National Geographic
  cameras," stated Greg Stemm, Odyssey co-founder. "Our
  focus now is the recovery of the coins. When that is
  completed, we will continue the archaeological excavation
  of other areas of the shipwreck.

  Once operations were recommenced in January, the new
  systems for picking up and managing coins proved very
  successful. Between January 13 and January 26, more
  than 13,000 coins were recovered.

  The SS Republic was a side wheel steamer that sank in 1865
  while en route from New York to New Orleans after battling
  a hurricane for two days. Odyssey discovered the shipwreck
  1,700 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean
  approximately 100 miles off the Georgia coast. The
  archaeological excavation of the shipwreck began in November
  of 2003 and is continuing.

  Among the coins already retrieved are numerous gold eagles,
  gold double eagles, silver half dollars and even some quarters,
  nearly all dating between the 1840's and 1865. Unlike other
  recently salvaged shipwrecks, a wide variety of dates and
  mints have been noted in this find. Based on the pieces
  recovered thus far that have been professionally conserved by
  Numismatic Conservation Services (NCS) and graded and
  encapsulated by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC),
  this collection may already include several finest-known
  examples of United States gold and silver coins from the
  period. While excavation has already uncovered thousands
  of coins, there is insufficient information at this point to predict
  the total value of the shipwreck and its cargo."


  Chris Fuccione reports that the address of the web site
  for the book by Alec S. Tulkoff which Michael Sullivan
  discussed last week is holocaust artifacts.
  The book was published in 2000.

  Michael J. Sullivan adds: "To clarify, I didn't write the
  summary.  It came from an E-Bay Listing !     The book
  is for sale at Amazon as well."

  Ron Haller-Williams found the web site, too. He writes:
  "There is a link to the author's description of the book at

  BTW, the bibliographic data was incomplete.  So I quote
  in full:  "Counterfeiting The Holocaust: A Historical And
  Archival Examination Of Holocaust Artifacts  ISBN:
  0-7643-1109-3    Size: 8 1/2" x 11"  88 Pages
  $19.95 + S/H  Illustrations: over 160 color and b/w
  photographs and maps.  Copyright © [July] 2000 Alec S.
  Tulkoff     [softbound]  Schiffer Publishing Ltd

  On the site are links to pictures and explanatory background
  of several  fake items, and to an essay entitled "Who Is
  Selling This Stuff And Why?"  Also an e-mail link if you
  want to buy the book."

  [The author also publishes an email newsletter on the topic:
  "After completing the manuscript for my book, I continued
  to monitor the counterfeits and fakes being sold on the Internet.
  The large number of such items continuously appearing for
  sale and auction led me to start a Newsletter dealing with
  the topic.

  I felt it necessary to keep on top of the ever changing
  counterfeit material showing up on the market. With each
  new discovery or display of original artifacts brought
  about the quick manufacture and distribution of
  counterfeits. "

  Bill Rosenblum adds: "However please be aware the site
  was last updated in January of 2002, two years ago.

  I have not read the book although I know it should be in
  my library. I  spoke with the author sometime before he
  wrote the book and I was not  impressed with his
  numismatic knowledge. At one time his website had a
  well known fake Buchenwald note shown under the genuine
  items. I tried to find some coins on the website, I saw the
  word once but could not  find it again.

  From others I have spoken with I have been told that the
  author is a well meaning and serious collector who was
  "burnt" badly a few times on some Holocaust artifacts he
  purchased. This led him to write his book and his newsletter.
  However, at times he has accused well known and
  knowledgeable dealers who have handled this material for
  30 years with selling fakes (mostly non numismatic).
  Anyone can write a book.

  My thoughts about the book and the website are not
  meant to denigrate the book or the idea behind it. In the
  early 1970's when I first started to handle this material there
  was very little written about it. Most of what I learned about
  the field was through reading the few works available,
  talking with the few people who handled it and collected it
  and speaking with the few survivors who would speak
  about their experiences.

  Arlie Slabaugh had a small section in his POW money
  pamphlet and there were some articles in the notgeld
  newsletter by (I believe) David Atsimony. I'm writing this
  note off the top of my head so some of the titles and
  authors may be wrong. Those were in the 1960's. In 1973
  Sam Simon published Handbook of the mail in the
  concentration camps 1933-1945 which was mainly a postal
  history but did have some numismatic information. In the
  1970's more information started to appear in the first
  book by Albert Pick and Carl Siemsen as well as in The
  Shekel, the International Bank Not Society Journal. Also,
  some articles appeared in both the newsletter of the very
  short-lived Judaic Syngraphic Collectors Association and
  one or two in my own house organ, the Judaic Numismatic
  Newsletter. In the early 80's, two issues of The Shekel were
  devoted to Numismatics of the Holocaust.  Since then many
  other works have appeared including, but not limited to books
  by Campbell, Schwan & Boling, Franquinent, Stahl and
  Burke. I'm sure I left some out.

  This is a very serious and important field in numismatics
  as paper money (and a few metal tokens) were used in
  both Ghettos and concentration camps. The Nazis did not
  just murder millions of Jews (and many others) but they
  used them up first. The use of money and the accompanying
  financial documents show just how depraved they were and
  also show the determination of the inmates and residents of
  the camps and Ghettos to try to survive.  Like all fields of
  numismatics there are unscrupulous people who try to exploit
  the novice collector. Know your source and learn for yourself.
  For those of you who see me at the few shows I still set up
  at, I usually have a small group of counterfeit concentration
  camp notes which I do not sell but I will show any or are
  interested. Unfortunately some of the more common examples
  still show up at flea markets in the mid-west.

  Please excuse any rambling that went on above. This is an
  area that I feel very strongly about. About 50 years ago I met
  my cousin "Willie" at a family function. He just sat in a corner,
  looking slightly out of it and never spoke a word. I remember
  that and the numbers tattooed on his wrist. I was about 8 years
  old but I still recall those details and I never saw him again.
  And nobody said a word about him."

  [My only encounter with a survivor was Mr. Steiner, a man in
  the neighborhood where I grew up.  I delivered newspapers to
  his home, where he lived with his wife.  I noticed the number
  tattooed on his arm. I was about 13, but knew immediately
  what it meant.  I could never bring myself to ask him about it.


  Herb Friedman writes: "For those readers who have some
  interest in the field of propaganda I offer the Propaganda
  banknotes of Operation Desert Storm:

  From the web page: "Portions of this article have previously
  been published in the International Banknote Journal,
  Vol. 30, No. 4, 1991, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1994, and Volume
  40, No.1, 2001."

  [This is a very interesting, thorough and well-illustrated
  article.  -Editor]


  Bob Leonard writes: "Unfortunately for Darryl, it is still
  usually necessary to read books, instead of finding everything
  conveniently on-line.  The "Umpqua River Hoard" is given
  two pages by Dave Bowers in American Coin Treasures and
  Hoards (pp. 38-9); it is also covered (and offered for sale)
  in Rare Coin Review No. 31 (1978), p. 11."


  Greg Heim writes.  I have a copy of the 1987 "Redbook" that
  was given out at the banquet of the 1986 ANA Convention.
  Turning the book 90 degrees clockwise, I noticed the white
  pages are speckled when pressed together.  Is anyone else's
  book like this?  You can e-mail me at
  gynandroidhead at  Thanks in advance."


  Fred Reed writes: "I have followed the discussion on
  Photoshop and currency reproduction in the last two
  issues of The E-Sylum with interest.  As Publisher-Editor
  of a paper money magazine (Society of Paper Money
  Collector's journal PAPER MONEY) and the author of
  currency articles and books, this turn of events could
  really cramp what I do.

  I'll admit that my concerns aren't "a hill of beans"
  in the concerns of governments and major corporations,
  but it was at least good to see the references you cited
  acknowledged the lawfulness of some currency copying
  so it will be interesting to see what unfolds down the line.
  Keep up the good work."


  Brad Karoleff  writes: "I will be attending the pre-Long Beach
  George Kolbe sale and am willing to represent bidders at the
  sale.  Interested  parties can contact me at
  Coins + 513-621-1996 or  859-371-1414."


  Martin Purdy writes: "Regarding Chick Ambrass' comments
  from last week,  Ray Williams writes: "Although I agree with
  Chick's  points in his article, I think he actually meant to say
  British  Colonies instead of American colonies."

  I disagree.  "American" is used in the geographical sense here,
  rather than possessive.  Try substituting "Pacific" or "African"
  for "American" and you'll see what I mean.  To include such
  Canadian bits as there were at the time, I might have said
  "North American colonies", mind you."


  Rich Hartzog writes: "I found this interesting link, with a new
  (to me) exonumia word:

  Peridromophily: Street car transfer collecting

  Happy Collecting!"


  Another coin-swallowing outbreak was reported by
  Reuters on January 30, 2004:

  "New coins introduced by Vietnam's Central Bank are
  being gobbled up -- not by collectors, but rather by children
  who swallow them after mistaking them for sweets.

  Since three coins were made available in mid-December after
  a two-decade absence, doctors have treated at least 17
  children for swallowing them."

  "The mishaps are an unforeseen headache for Vietnam's central
  bank, which had hoped the coins would promote the use of
  vending machines and other conveniences.

  The launch of Vietnam's new money has faced other glitches.

  Polymer-based, counterfeit proof banknotes that were also
  introduced last month were hit by rumors that the bills would
  be withdrawn because they had no year of issue printed on

  To read the full article, see:


  On January 26, 2004, Reuters had this report out of
  Lubbock, TX:

  "The oldest bank robber in the United States, 92-year-old
  J.L. Hunter Rountree, was sentenced to more than 12 years
  in prison on Friday after he pleaded guilty to robbing $1,999
  from a Texas bank last August.

  Rountree, who goes by the nickname "Red," said he robbed
  his first bank when he was about 80 because he wanted
  revenge against banks for sending him into a financial crisis."

  "He appeared in court in a loose-fitting prison outfit and
  shackles on his ankles. He had a cane to help him walk.
  Rountree listened to the proceedings through headphones
  because he is hard of hearing."

  "Federal officials said they had no records to prove it, but they
  are fairly certain Rountree was the oldest person ever to rob a
  bank in the United States."

  To read the full article, see:


  This week's featured web page is recommended by
  Larry Mitchell:  A Survey of Digital Library Aggregation
  Services by Martha Brogan, "an independent library
  consultant with two decades of experience in academic

  "This report provides an overview of a diverse set of more
  than thirty digital library aggregation services, organizes them
  into functional clusters and then evaluates them more fully
  from the perspective of an informed user."

  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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