In response to Len Augsburger's question about The U. S. Coin Collector publication, Dave Lange submitted these
recollections about the National Coin Collectors Association. Thanks! -Editor
I knew Bill Atkinson casually at the time the organization was formed (May 31, 1990), and we corresponded a bit about the merits of such
an organization. There existed a certain uneasiness with the ANA, particularly after ANACS (then still owned by the ANA) began certifying
coins in its own encapsulations in 1989. This was seen by some as selling out to the marketplace, though it was really just an eleventh
hour attempt to regain its lost market share in the certification business. The old photo certificates had been a hot commodity from
1979-86, but the arrival of PCGS and NGC quickly rendered them nearly worthless.
Bill's idea was that the ANA had become too big and businesslike and no longer represented the interests of ordinary coin
collectors. The NCCA was formed with the express goal of focusing on "unencapsulated pre-1965 U. S. coins with a value of less than
$500." I sympathized with his concerns, but I did not accept them as fact. I wished him well but declined to join the NCCA.
I discussed this viewpoint with other figures in the hobby, with the result that I was recruited by Numismatic News to write the
"No" perspective in a point-counterpoint examination of the topic titled "Do We Need a New Collector Organization?"
Obviously, Bill authored the "Yes" viewpoint, and this article ran in the August 21, 1990 issue. I defended the ANA's role in
providing for collectors as well as dealers, ending my commentary with this observation: "Were it not for a conflict of interest with
the NCCA, Bill Atkinson would be a good candidate for the ANA's board of governors. With a knowledge of the hobby and a sincere desire
to meet the expectations of collectors, he would have my vote."
Termination of the NCCA was announced by Bill in January, 1992. He noted that his club had grown rapidly in its first year to 330
members, but that after that time "defections were more common than new members." He also noted that until the club's demise
the NCCA's newsletter, The U. S. Coin Collector, had been issued every two months, so there must have been about seven or eight
issues. Also published by the NCCA were three monographs about United States coins, but the titles were not provided in that article. Bill
then added that the NCCA Library, which had been launched the previous September, had not received even a single request to use its lending
Can anyone tell us the titles or topics of the three NCAA monographs? I organize my library by topic and may have these somewhere, but
need some help to know where to look. -Editor
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
QUERY: THE NATIONAL COIN COLLECTORS ASSOCIATION
Wayne Homren, Editor
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