The E-Sylum:  Volume 7, Number 9, February 29, 2004, Article 2


Your editor visited the headquarters of the American
Numismatic Association in Colorado Springs the afternoon
of Wednesday, February 25th. In the Denver area for
business, I was able to squeeze in a side trip to visit old
friends and have meetings to plan for this summer's
convention in Pittsburgh. As General Chairman, there
are many details to be coordinated with HQ.

The first order of business was to meet with computer
and communications guru John Nebel, who comes to
headquarters weekly to (among other things) photograph
numismatic items for publication. The equipment and
software is superb, ensuring top-quality electronic images.
I had brought with me several Pittsburgh-area medals
to be imaged for publication in the club organ, Numismatist.

With that taken care of, next came lunch, with ANA Librarian
Nancy Green and ANA Researcher/Historian David Sklow
and his wife Sherry. We walked a few blocks to Paninos,
a local hangout with great food. It was fun to just sit and
chat and shoot the numismatic breeze. I rarely get to see
these great folks outside of conventions, when all of us are
busy and don't have much time to visit.

The rest of the afternoon flew by quickly with other meetings.
Dave Sklow introduced me to some of the new staffers,
including communications manager Jim Lucas and museum
collections manager Erik Heikkenen. Erik was busy with
three ANA volunteers who were helping to catalog paper
money in the museum collection.

Next, I spent time at Numismatist's Ground Zero, the large
office shared by Editor Barbara Gregory and Senior Editor
Marilyn Reback. Barbara and I discussed plans for articles
and membership news items (and the accompanying
illustrations) to be published in issues leading up to and
following this summer's convention.

Then, I had a nice meeting with Education Director Gail Baker
and Jim Lucas. We talked about special exhibits and events
for the convention with an eye toward both publicizing the
events to draw in the crowds, and making sure they had some
particularly interesting things to see when they arrived.

Unfortunately, Convention Manager Brenda Bishop had already
left for Portland, OR to coordinate next month's spring
convention. Brenda and I are in regular contact, however,
so there wasn't a lot we needed to discuss this week.

Between and following my meetings I squeezed in time to view
the ANA Museum and Library. Nancy Green gave me a
short guided tour of the library's rare book room. One of the
first things to catch my eye was a bound scrapbook that had
been assembled by George Rode, and early ANA officer who
was also a founder and Secretary of one of my local clubs, the
Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society (founded 1878).
The scrapbook contained copies of the "Plain Talk" column,
(the early ANA journal), plus interesting items of ephemera
such as programs of the 4th and 5th ANA conventions.
Other highlights of the whirlwind visit included a beautiful
vignette book of the U.S.Bureau of Engraving and Printing,
the Coole research on Chinese coinage, and Cruikshank's
original pen-and-ink sketch for his famous 1818 "Bank
Restriction Note," created after he witnessed people being
hanged for passing forged Bank of England notes. See the
ANA web site for images: Images

By then it was past closing time and the lights were off in the
museum. But Barb Gregory came to the rescue and relit the
galleries long enough for me to make a quick tour of the
current Mexican coinage exhibit, the Colorado money exhibit,
and the new Harry Bass collection exhibit, all of which were
amazing. This was my first chance to visit headquarters since
the new expansion and renovation. Hats off to former ANA
Executive Director Ed Rochette, the ANA staff, the Bass
family, Dwight Manley and other donors for making it all a
reality. The ANA has a first-class space that all members
can be proud of.

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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