The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 26, Number 30, July 23, 2023, Article 4


The ninth edition of Mega Red adds a section covering quarter eagle gold coins. Here's the announcement. -Editor

Mega-Red-9_cover The ninth edition of Mega Red (the Deluxe Edition of the Guide Book of United States Coins) is available for sale. The 1,504-page book can be ordered online (including at and is available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide.

The new ninth-edition Mega Red includes updates and revisions in every U.S. coinage series. As a special feature, it includes 178 pages of expanded study of quarter eagle gold coins—the $2.50 denomination issued from 1796 to 1929. Every type, date, and mintmark of these valuable and collectible gold coins is individually studied. Coverage includes history, illustrated grading standards, mintage information (including for rare early Proofs), strike characteristics, data on logotypes and other die characteristics, estimated field populations in Mint State and circulated grades, collectible die varieties, selected historical auction records, and more. This in-depth analysis covers all eight major quarter eagle types from the Capped Bust coins of the 1790s to the Indian Head coinage that concluded just before the Great Depression.

More than a dozen appendices explore specialized subjects such as patterns, error and misstruck coins, and counterfeits. One richly illustrated 43-page appendix, based on the work of Q. David Bowers and Katherine Jaeger, studies the history and collecting of American medals and tokens. Another in-depth appendix covers the American Arts Commemorative Series gold medallions of 1980 to 1984. Numismatists Jeff Shevlin and William D. Hyder contributed an 18-page study of So-Called Dollars with photographs, historical information, rarity data, and values for nearly 100 different examples struck to celebrate expositions of the 1880s. Other appendices describe the United States Mint's upcoming coinage programs for 2024 and beyond.

  Mega-Red-9_pg0733 Mega-Red-9_pg0829

Billed as the biggest, most useful Red Book ever, Mega Red measures 7 x 10 inches and has 1,040 more pages than the regular edition. The larger size and increased page count combined make Mega Red five times bigger than the regular-edition Red Book. It prices more than 9,000 items in up to 13 grades each, with 50,000 individual values and more than 15,000 auction records covering circulated, Mint State, and Proof coinage. The book is illustrated with thousands of full-color images, including hundreds that are new to this edition.

Mega Red covers American coinage from New England colonial times to the modern day—half cents through $20 gold double eagles, plus bullion, commemoratives, Proof and Mint sets, error coins, significant tokens and medals, coins struck by the United States for the Philippines (1903–1945), and other numismatic collectibles. It follows the basic structure of the regular-edition Red Book, but each chapter is dramatically expanded with more historical information, more die varieties, detailed grading instructions with enlarged full-color illustrations, specialized advice on strike characteristics and other technical details, market analysis, auction data, and guidance on collecting and investing in rare coins.

Q. David Bowers is the book's Senior Editor. Jeff Garrett is its Valuations Editor. Kenneth Bressett serves as Editor Emeritus. An illustrated 83-page introduction, The History of Coins in America, 1607 to Date, is the work of Bowers. More than 120 numismatists have contributed research, photographs, market analysis, and other valuable knowledge and resources.

The ninth edition of Mega Red includes a 2023 Coin Market Report by Jeff Garrett. My overall view of the rare-coin market is very positive, writes Garrett. Educated collectors will always have the best chance of success. There has never been a better time to collect coins. The information available now for every coin series is astounding—Mega Red is a great example. Collectors a generation ago had only a fraction of this information available to make purchase decisions.

Each year's new Mega Red features an expanded focus on one or more coin series. The first edition included a 364-page section on copper half cents and large cents, with images, history, diagnostics, and pricing for 832 die varieties, 1793–1857. The second edition featured 330 pages covering 607 varieties of Flying Eagle, Indian Head, and Lincoln cents, 1856 to date. The third edition's feature was on nickel five-cent pieces—Shield nickels, Liberty Head nickels, Buffalo nickels, and Jefferson nickels—covering 545 varieties in 314 pages. Other editions have studied dimes, quarter dollars, half dollars, and silver and related dollars, as well as odd denominations such as twenty-cent pieces and half dimes.

For federal coins, detailed charts show each mintage; a summary of certified population data; average national retail prices in grades ranging from About Good to high Mint State and Proof; and three or more recent auction records for most coins. Enlarged close-ups of die varieties provide visual guidance. Extensive chart notes give the backstories and additional details on significant rarities.

  • Mega Red: A Guide Book of United States Coins, Deluxe Edition, 9th edition
  • ISBN 0794850197 1,504 pages, full color $59.95 retail
  • By R.S. Yeoman; Senior Editor Q. David Bowers; Valuations Editor Jeff Garrett; Editor Emeritus Kenneth Bressett
  • URL:

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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