The E-Sylum v7#24, June 13, 2004

whomren at whomren at
Sun Jun 13 18:11:09 PDT 2004

Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 7, Number 24, June 13, 2004:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2004, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


   E. Tomlinson Fort, Editor of our print publication, The Asylum
   writes: "Lots of good news. The Spring 2004 issue of The
   Asylum is now being proofed and should be on its way to the
   printer within a week. The contents are:

   “The Quest to Build the Set,” by Stephen Pradier. In which the
    author discusses the problems of putting together a complete
   set of The Numismatist.

   “Mendacity Rears Its Ugly Head,” by Myron Xenos. In which
   the author combs through the evidence to reveal the identity of
   the greatest prankster in the history of numismatic literature.

   “Numismatic Sidelights: Perry W. Fuller,” by Leonard
   Augsburger. An overview of the career of the man who
   catalogued the famous Baltimore hoard.

   If you have not joined the NBS yet, shame on you.

   We are presently hard at work on our special Summer 2004
   issue. The contents will be as follows:

   “Jean Foy-Vaillant: The King’s Antiquary (1632 – 1706),” by
   Christian E. Dekesel. A massive study of the life and works of
   a numismatic writer at the court of Louis XIV.  This work has a
   full bibliographic listing of all Foy-Vallant’s works, including
   those which will appear in the author’s forthcoming multi-volume
   bibliography of 18th century numismatic books.

   “William Frederick Mayers: A Flashing Star,” by Pete Smith.
   A short overview of the career of the man who wrote the first
   essay on numismatic literature to be published in the United

   “An Annotated Bibliography of the Published Numismatic
   Writings of Walter H. Breen by David F. Fanning. A huge
   listing of every numismatic work published by Breen (excluding
   auction catalogues, those will be featured in a later work) along
   with comments about the contents of each.

   “Blunders, Hoaxes, and Lost Masterpieces from the
   Numismatic Literature of the Renaissance,” by John Cunnally.
   A well-illustrated study of ancient coins which did not exist but
   were imagined and illustrated in 16th century numismatic works.

   “Some Reminiscences,” by Q. David Bowers. One of the
   country's leading coin dealers provides us with a number
   of priceless anecdotes of his experiences in the world of
   numismatic literature.

   “Creating The E-Sylum, The Numismatic Bibliomania
   Society's Weekly Electronic Newsletter,” by Wayne K.
   Homren. The early history of the award winning newsletter
   of this society.

   “American Numismatic Pioneers: An Index to Sources,” by
   Pete Smith. A lengthy annotated reference to the material
   dealing with persons prominent in US numismatics before 1876.

   “Recollections of 34 Years at Spink, 1969–2003,” by Douglas
   Saville. A great essay recalling the experiences of the leading
   numismatic literature dealer in Europe. (Fortunately, he does
   not recall the pesky American who first blundered into his
   office in 1986.)

   The issue will be heavily illustrated and over 200 pages in
   length and only available to those NBS members who have
   either joined or renewed their membership by July 1.

   In addition to our regular issue, we will also be producing a
   special limited edition hardcover copy.  No more than 25
   copies will be produced. The cost is $100 and payment must
   be received by the treasurer by July 15th. Copies cannot be
   reserved without full  payment. David Perkins needs your
   cheque and you must be an NBS member to get one. The
   names of the subscribers to this hard cover will appear on a
   special page that will be bound inside. This limited edition
   will be distributed (I hope) at the NBS general meeting at the
   ANA convention in Pittsburgh on Friday August 20th. We
   will mail copies to those who cannot make the meeting.

   At the NBS general meeting we will be auctioning off the
   signed manuscripts of many of our contributors to the
   anniversary issue as well as the corrected proofs, back up
   CDs  and other material related to the production of this
   important publication.  Attendees will have the chance to own
   a piece of numismatic literary history.  All proceeds will help
   defray our production costs.

   Finally, let us not forget that after the NBS meeting on Friday
   there will be the Great Numismatic Libraries of Pittsburgh Tour.
   Open only to NBS members, at a cost of $20 per person, you
   can have a chance to see the numismatic wonders of Wayne’s
   and my library (not to mention my complete set of Doc Savage

   All the money concerning the above should be sent to our
   esteemed treasurer: W. David Perkins, PO Box 212, Mequon,
   WI  53092."


   Phil Carrigan writes: "George Kolbe and staff conducted a
   magnificent sale including the warm hospitality provided at
   lot viewing.  I found a bounty of information looking at lots
   I did not intend to buy!  No one I've spoken to bought as
   much as they intended to buy at the sale.  This includes
   bidders present, mail bidders and particularly, me!"

   [The sale realized $1.66 million.  A front-page article by
   Dan Friedus in the June 21st issue of Coin World
   includes a nice photo of the auction room.  Some more
   photos are available on the Kolbe web site:

   Ray Williams writes: "I don't know if it's been the experience
   of others on this newsletter, but I find that when I generally
   place a mail bid on numismatic items, and I'm the successful
   bidder, I usually pay the maximum amount that I bid.

   That was not the case with the Stack's/George Kolbe Ford
   Library Sale!  I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised
   when I found out that I was successful in purchasing one lot
   that was important to me, and I received it for $1000 less
   than the maximum I had bid.  There's enough complaining in
   the hobby - I just wanted to share something positive that
   happened to me."


   With the death of former President Ronald Reagan,
   movements by his supporters to honor him with numismatic
   tributes are gaining momentum.  On June 8th an article in
   the New York Times was headlined "Have You Got Two
   Reagans For a Twenty?"

   "Forget, for a moment, Ronald Reagan's place in the history
   books. What about his place in the nation's pocketbooks?

   Should he displace Franklin D. Roosevelt on the dime? How
   easily could Alexander Hamilton, never a president, be
   pushed off the $10 bill? How strongly is the Andrew Jackson
   lobby committed to the $20 bill?  Could the John F. Kennedy
   constituency be coaxed to give up the half dollar?

   Mr. Reagan's death has set off a flurry of debate among
   Republicans about honoring him on the nation's currency or

   Representative Jeff Miller of Florida introduced legislation on
   Tuesday to put Mr. Reagan on the 50-cent coin. But he found
   himself bumping up against a rival contingent that is pushing the
   $20 bill.

   The Ronald Reagan Legacy Project has spent three years
   studying the currency question. The clear choice is the $10 bill,
   the organization concluded, because Hamilton was not a

   Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the No. 2 Republican
   in the Senate, favors the $10 bill. But that idea is just one of
   many, he said, emphasizing that his view is that "some
   appropriate gesture of significance" should be made to
   commemorate Mr. Reagan.

   As for the Treasury Department's position, a spokeswoman,
   Anne Womack Kolton, said in an interview on Tuesday,
   "We think it's premature at this point to discuss any
   changes to currency."

   To read the full article (registration required) see:

   [The Times had a typo in another article in the same issue,
   which noted that "The nation's first state funeral paid tribute
   to Abraham Lincoln, the nation's 16th president, who was
   assassinated on April 14, 1965."  U.S. bibliophiles know
   that date (in 1865) because the famous  J.N.T. Levick sale
   by Edward Cogan, originally scheduled for April 27-29, 1865,
   was postponed due to the assassination of President Lincoln
   on  April 14th, 1865. Lincoln was shot while attending a
   performance at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C.


   One piece of numismatically-related Reagan trivia is the
   fact that he was born in an apartment above a bank in
   Tampico, IL.  Is the name of the bank known?  It would
   be interesting to know if the bank issued currency in 1911.


   Dick Johnson writes: "The year was 1969. Medallic Art
   Company, then on 45th Street in midtown Manhattan, was
   striking the California Bicentennial Medal.  The call came
   midweek: the governor from California was in town on
   business, he has a free hour tomorrow at midday. “Could
   he come visit your plant to see their Bicentennial Medal
   being struck?”

   “Could he?”  W-e-l-l Y-e-s!  We couldn't wait. My chore
   was to get publicity photographs taken.  But by the end of
   the day, however, I hadn't lined up a photographer yet. My
   usual photographers were all busy.  We were in the center of
   the photographic industry on the East Side of Manhattan,
   amid photo studios and film processing plants, but I couldn't
   find a last-minute photographer until an hour before the
   governor’s intended arrival.

   His entourage was not that large, four men as I recall. MAco
   President Bill Louth did the honors in the usual VIP tour, from
   a start in the showroom and oval gallery to his office and the
   firm’s collection of fine art statues. We had a small statue of
   a bear. The Governor walked over to that statue and caressed
   it.  The California bear was the symbol on the state’s
   Bicentennial Medal.

   Reagan passed the glass wall with all the office girls watching
   his every move.  He smiled and waved at them.  Was this the
   governor,  the movie star, or the man? Either way he charmed
   the ladies.

   In the plant be became fascinated with the die-engraving
   pantograph, standing in the crowded room watching the artist’s
   original model being engraved into a die to strike the medals.
   When it was over, he left.

   My photographer handed me the roll of film, I rushed to the
   processing plant the next block over.  Later that day, I got the
   negatives and contact print. A quick order of prints, then I did
   something unusual.  Who in California, I wondered, could use
   these to best advantage?  Jim Miller’s Coinage came to mind.
   And Lee Martin was my contact there.  I express mailed that
   contact sheet to Lee. (The events that day happened so fast I
   forgot to eat lunch!)

   Lee used it immediately in an NLG Newsletter.  I had intended
   for him to make a full page of that contact sheet.  Blow it up a
   little to fit a 8 ½ x 11-inch page. Instead he cut up the tiny prints

   and ran those exact size in an issue of NLG News. [My file of
   those newsletters has long since disappeared.  Any E-Sylum
   reader have a copy of that 1969 issue in their files?  Drop me
   an email: dick.johnson at]

   Later, we turned the tables. Medallic Art visited Reagan!
   Reagan was elected president in November 1980 and Medallic
   Art was commissioned to make his official Inaugural Medal.
   Reagan chose the artist, Ed Fraughton from Utah. Fraughton
   wanted to model Reagan live in person at his California ranch.
   We had to move fast. I contacted a PR firm in NYC, Ruder &
   Finn [Dave Finn was very active in the sculpture world].  They
   hired a photographer in California.

   The prints of Fraughton modeling Reagan were so good I later
   included them in  Joe Levine’s book on Collecting Inaugural
   Medals. Reagan’s memory will live on -- certainly
   numismatically -- not only in that book, but also for a long time
   in his presidential inaugural medals.

   But for me, Ronald Reagan will be remembered by the day he
   visited Medallic Art."


   Bob Leonard  writes: "I'm still chasing pedigrees of a very
   few small California gold coins, and am looking for certain
   B. Max Mehl auction catalogs that can be identified as
   having belonged to Oscar G. Schilke.  Mr. Schilke died
   May 23, 1965, and Hank Spangenberger bought his library,
   including "a few" auction catalogs, that year.  He integrated
   the Schilke library with his own, and later sold most of his
   (Spangenberger's) B. Max Mehl catalogs to Armand
   Champa.  Champa did a similar weeding out, so a Champa
   pedigree is no assurance that a Mehl catalog came from
   Schilke (though it is a start); they could be anywhere.

   Specifically, I am interested in the following Mehl sales:
   Beldon E. Roach, Feb. 8, 1944; A Royal Sale (Renz),
   March 23, 1948; and Rovensky-Hoffecker, Nov. 30, 1954.
   I'd like to know if any of these catalogs can somehow be tied
   to Schilke (name present, copy of Mehl's invoice, etc.)  And
   I'm interested in any of these catalogs with notations or invoices
   indicating that the following lots were purchased or bid on:
   Roach lot 1255; Royal/Renz lot 3987; and Rovensky-Hoffecker
   lot 1940.

   Can any E-Sylum reader help?"


   Jan Moens of Dilbeek, Belgium writes: "The famous Aitna
   tetradrachme is part of the de Hirsch collection that was
   acquired by the Belgian Coin Cabinet in the 19th century.
   More information (in French) and a picture can be found
   at the the following web page:

   Kerry Wetterstrom, Editor/Publisher of The Celator, writes:
   "The Aitna tetradrachm is "the" coin in the ancient coin
   collecting world. As for the claim that it's the world's most
   valuable coin, we will probably never know unless the Brussels
   cabinet decides to purge their collection, or some of the other
   rumored specimens finally come to light!"

   Daniel Kurt Ackermann of Heritage Rare Coin Galleries writes:
   "Proving that the internet has many treasures if you dig deeply:

   I believe this is an image of the Aitna Tetradrachm:

   And another image of the obverse with an article by the Israel


   From the June 11, 2004 Newark (NJ) Star-Ledger:

   "The Newark Museum hopes it will lure a new audience with the
   upcoming photo retrospective of Bruce Springsteen's career,
   since it will be the only East Coast museum hosting "Springsteen:
   Troubadour of the Highway."

   "The Newark Museum, however, is much more than a showcase
   for the photographic album of Bruce Springsteen's career.

   Founded in 1909 on the top floor of the Newark Public Library
   and moved to its present location on Washington Street in 1929,
   the museum has grown to be one of the largest publicly held art
   collections in the state, as well as an educational institution that
   reaches out to well over 150,000 students each year through
   special programs, lending exhibits, Junior Gallery exhibitions, the
   Mini Zoo, Fire Museum and the 1784 Lyons Farms Schoolhouse
   on the grounds."

   "The museum also boasts impressive collections of Asian, Pacific,
   African and classical art, as well as coin and currency collections
   and the premier collection of New Jersey decorative and industrial

   To read the full article, see:

   Do we have any readers from the Garden State who can tell
   us about the coins and currency on display?


   Ray Williams writes: "I was wondering if any  E-Sylum
   subscribers know of exactly how many different reprints
   of  Sylvester S. Crosby's  "Early Coins of America" have
   been printed, by whom and the dates."

   [I know of four reprints offhand - the 1945 Ruth Green
   reprint, the 1965 Token and Medal Society reprint, the
   1970 Burt Franklin reprint, and the 1974 (and 1983)
   Quarterman reprints.  There may be a Sanford Durst
   reprint out there somewhere, but I wouldn't clutter my
   library with one.  Has The Colonial Newsletter reprinted
   Crosby in whole or in part at some point?  Can any of
   our readers supply references to other reprints?


   Regarding the mention of single-zero slots in last week's
   item about the Nevada "Fitzgerald Hoard, Ron Haller-
   Williams writes: "Last I knew, most European countries
   would not allow the double-zero, figuring that the house
   should be happy with almost 2.703% (1/37 of the total
   staked, on average), and that 2/38 or 5.263% was too
   greedy.  So a wheel with a single zero slot is not exactly
   rare this side of the pond!"


   John Isles of Hanover, MI writes: "I recently acquired some
   bound volumes of World Coins magazine apparently from the
   library of the late Herb Melnick.  (Three volumes have H. I.
   MELNICK in gold lettering on the front cover.)  They run
   from Vol. 2 (1965) through Vol. 13, Nos. 1-3 (January -
   March, 1976), but Vol. 5 is missing.

   I wanted to learn about the history of the magazine and
   discovered the following, which I thought might me of interest
   to our readers.

   The magazine World Coins was published monthly from
   January 1964 to March 1976.  It was a successor to World
   Coins Bulletin, whose last issue was in March 1963, and
   which was purchased by Sidney Printing and Publishing Co.
   in Sidney, Ohio.  World Coins was edited by Russell Rulau
   until May 1974, and then by Courtney Coffing.  From April
   1976 it was merged with the weekly Coin World.  (This
   information is from an editorial in the last issue of World

   Melnick's obituary appeared in Numismatic News Vol. 30,
   No. 30 (July 24, 1982), p. 13, and in Coin World Vol. 23,
   No. 1163 (July 28, 1982), p. 3 ("Death claims Herb Melnick
   at home")."

   [Would anyone care to add to our history of this publication?
   I have a bound set as well.  And would anyone happen to
   know the whereabouts of the missing Melnick volumes 1
   and 5?  -Editor]


   John Isles adds: "I found some interesting anecdotes about
   Melnick on the web.  I'm not sure I'd have liked to meet him.
   Can anybody point me to an obituary notice?

   Here's an account from the PCGS web site of rather
   questionable proceedings at a coin auction:

   "I recall one instance in which a well-known specialist
   desired to purchase a rare early American coin, but was
   afraid that if others in the audience saw him bid on it, they
   would bid slightly more and take it away from him - knowing
   that he had the best idea of anyone as to what it was truly
   worth. No comparable specimen had appeared on the
   market for years. And yet he did want to bid obviously, for
   he would be in the audience and others would expect him
   to bid.

   "He set up this arrangement: Taking a prominent seat in the
   audience, he told the auctioneer that he would put his hand
   in the air and would be bidding up to a certain level. If the
   competing bidders forced him to exceed that level, then his
   hand would come down, but Herbert Melnick, a well-known
   dealer (since deceased), would be bidding on his behalf, but
   no one would know this.  If Melnick bought the lot it was to
   be charged to our client's account.  The coin opened at a
   modest figure, and my client put his hand in the air, at the
   same time looking around to see who else was bidding. Five
   or six other hands were in the air at the same time. The
   bidding progressed, level by level, until our client and just
   two or three others were bidding, when at which time the
   client lowered his hand. Everyone except the auctioneer
   thought he had dropped out. Then Herbert Melnick raised
   his hand, and our client, not being a shy type of person, said
   so that all in the audience could hear: "The price is getting
   ridiculous - it's not worth that!" He was endeavoring to
   dissuade anyone from bidding much more. However, the
   competition continued, and finally Melnick bought the lot for
   a world's record price."

   [You could call this arrangement with Melnick "interesting"
   or "creative", but I think "questionable" is too harsh a word.
   From time immemorial prominent bidders have sought to
   avoid showing all their cards at public auction for just the
   reasons stated.  The bidder's theatrics were designed to
   distract the audience; although it may be seen as tacky,
   rude, childish or even pathetic by others, it's perfectly legal,
   and the special arrangements with Melnick and the auctioneer
   are not unusual - deep-pocketed clients can command such
   special treatment.

   What other auction tales can E-Sylum readers share with us?
   Is it true that once there was a bidder who took the opposite
   tack, taping his bidder paddle to the back wall of the auction
   room and walking out?  Apparently the idea was to discourage
   anyone from even THINKING of outbidding him on the lot.

   The next Melnick anecdote is found in an interview with
   John J. Ford, Jr. on the Heritage was site:

   "LEGACY: You were also privy to some of the goings-on at
   NASCA [Numismatic and Antiquarian Service Corporation
   of America] in the early years with Herb Melnick.

   FORD: I guess the play was named "Will Success Spoil Rock
   Hunter?" Well, in this case, "Success Spoiled Herb Melnick."
   Melnick changed from a fellow you could talk to, to someone
   who became increasingly aggressive, increasingly hostile. Even
   to the people who were trying to help him, he became hostile.
   Talk about arguments between me and Wormser, those were
   patty-cake sessions compared to the arguments between
   Melnick and Ball.  Douglas Ball is a mild-mannered, good-
   hearted, give-you-the-shirt-off-his-back type, and Melnick was
   the type that would go for your throat. When Herb still worked
   for Stanley Apfelbaum, I suggested to Doug Ball that he go in
   business with Melnick. I said, "He is a wolf, but he will protect
   you from the other wolves:" or something to that effect. But
   Melnick got out of hand. He became enamored with his own
   success. When their business hit ten million a year, he started
   to think he could walk on water. He started to take auction
   consignments with free buybacks and 90 percent advances. In
   a declining market or on material you don't know anything
   about, that can be very dangerous. He insisted on making all
   the decisions, and he started to run the company into the ground.
   In the process, he alienated me by telling me I didn't know what
   the hell I was talking about. And he started to alienate Ball.
   One day, Ball just got fed up, changed the locks on the doors,
   and threw Melnick out. It was Ball's father's money that kept
   the whole thing going. Then Melnick went into business for
   himself, and, as you know, it lasted about a year and a half
   before he died at the age of 39-which is rather young to die of
   a heart attack. I think that means he had a rather vociferous
   personality. But he was a guy with a lot of talent.  If it had been
   channeled in the right direction, he could have been a very
   successful fellow."


   Tom Sheehan forwarded the following press release regarding
   a new exhibit by the American Medallic Sculpture Association:

   "32 members of the American Medallic Sculpture Association,
   AMSA, will have their medals on display at the Nordic Heritage
   Museum in Seattle from June 18th to August 1st, 2004.

   80 medals from all over the USA as well as Ireland, Canada,
   Israel, Australia and also medals by an invited artist from the
   Norwegian Mint are assembled at the Nordic Heritage Museum
   for this exhibit.

   This exhibit was made possible by the efforts of Anne-Lise
   Deering, AMSA secretary and newsletter editor. Ms. Deering
   has a special connection with the Nordic community as a native
   Norwegian and a member of the Nordic Heritage Museum.

   The purpose of the American Medallic Sculpture Association,
   AMSA is to encourage the creation and study of medallic
   sculpture in North America. All who are interested are welcome
   as members. By having exhibitions like this we hope to share this
   wonderful art form with everyone.

   The medals in this exhibit were chosen by AMSA artists
   members:  Jim Licaretz, Eugene Daub, Heidi Wastweet,
   Anne-Lise Deering and Woodinville sculptor, Lisa Sheets.

   There will be a  preview reception on June 17th and the
   exhibit will be open to the  public until August 1.

   The Museum is located at 3014 NW 67th Street, Seattle
   and is open: 10 am to 4 pm Tues - Sat and 12 noon to
   4 pm Sun. Check their website:  " ".

   In addition to the Nordic Heritage Museum exhibit Ms.
   Deering continues to display AMSA members' medals at
   libraries throughout the greater Seattle area. At the moment
   there is a display in the Bothell library until June 15th and
   then to the Anderson library in Edmonds in July before it
   goes to the Redmond library in August.

   For more information about AMSA visit our website
  ""  or contact AMSA secretary
   Anne-Lise Deering,  e-mail: AMSAnews at or call


   Hal V. Dunn writes: "I don't know any stories of collectors
   cutting notes out of sheets to amuse themselves at the expense
   of shocked waiters and shopkeepers. However, there are
   stories about Walter Scott, the legendary Death Valley Scotty,
   cutting notes from uncut sheets.

   One account, documented in Death Valley Scotty Told Me,
   by Eleanor Jordan Houston, the wife of a National Park Service
   Ranger stationed at Death Valley during the late 1940s, centers
   on a trip Scotty made many years before by train from Barstow,
   California to Los Angeles.  He had $4,800 in uncut sheets.  He
   purchased two bottles of wine, borrowed a pair of manicure
   scissors from a young lady and cut a bill off.  He told the couple
   he was with that the notes were counterfeit, but so good it was
   easy to pass them.  He even offered to sell the roll of bills for
   $4,000.  The husband of the young lady got off the train briefly
   at San Bernardino and notified the police.  In Los Angeles
   Treasury agents were waiting when the train arrived.  Frank J.
   Belcher, Jr., the assistant cashier for the Los Angeles bank was
   called in to settle the problem – Scotty indeed had received
   uncut sheets from the bank.  (pp. 36-39, appendix note #2;
   original copyright 1954, copyright 1985 by the Death Valley
   Natural History Association).

   As I recall there is another published reference to Death Valley
   Scotty cutting notes from sheets.  However, I am unable to
   locate it at the moment.  That story involved sheets from a
   national bank in Nevada.  He cut them off in front of numerous
   persons in Tonopah, Goldfield, or Rhyolite, Nevada,
   communities he frequented regularly."

   Tom DeLorey writes: "At the 1983 ANA convention in San
   Diego, I went out to dinner with then-fellow ANA employee
   Nancy Green and her husband Ron and their infant son,
   Andrew. Before we left the bourse area, I bought a four-subject
   sheet of deuces from the BEP booth, rolled it up and stuck it in
   my jacket. As we left, I handed Nancy a pair of scissors and
   told her to stick them in her purse.  Dinner came to just under
   $40, and by prior arrangement I took the check and gave the
   waiter a $50. He naturally came back with ten singles so that
   he could get most of them back as his tip, but I just stuffed
   them into another jacket pocket and casually asked Nancy for
   the scissors.  She did so with an absolutely straight face, and
   I took out the sheet of four deuces, carefully cut off one, and
   handed the waiter the conjoined "$6 bill."  As we calmly
   gathered up our belongings and the baby, the guy just stood
   there holding it out with a stunned look on his face. As we
   started to head towards the door, he finally said "Do you print
   your own?", to which I smiled and said "Doesn't everybody?"

   Ed Snible writes: "My favorite uncut sheet story comes from
   Steve Wozniak (inventor and founder of Apple Computer):

   "I take the sheets of 4 bills and have a printer, located through
   friends, gum them into pads, like stationery pads. The printer
   then perforates them between the bills, so that I can tear a bill
   or two away.  The bills that I'd tipped the waitress came from
   such a pad."

   Myron Xenos writes; "Of some humorous interest might be a
   case where a client of mine turned an uncut sheet of one-dollar
   notes sideways, and then cut the paper into some very
   odd-looking pieces of currency. It surprised me at first until I
   realized what he had done. A good bar trick for numismatists
   who like to fool their drinking buddies & probably good for a
   few drinks. But then I would get the heck out before they
   caught on."


   This week's featured web page is from the Russ Logan
   collection site.  It pictures an 1829 U.S. Bust Half Dollar
   with a "Houck's Panacea Baltimore" counterstamp.

   "According to Gregory Brunk in American and Canadian
   Countermarked Coins, Jacob Houck operated his business
   at the corner of German and Hanover streets in Baltimore,
   and advertised in the 1842 Matchett's Baltimore City Directory.
   His product, Houck's Panacea, was prepared from vegetable
   matter and cured a variety of ailments."

  Wayne Homren
  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. For those without web access,
  write to W. David Perkins, NBS Secretary-Treasurer,
  P.O. Box 212, Mequon, WI  53092-0212.

  For Asylum mailing address changes and other
  membership questions, contact David at this email
  address: wdperki at

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