The E-Sylum v9#34, August 20, 2006

esylum at esylum at
Mon Aug 21 22:33:51 PDT 2006

Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 9, Number 34, August 20, 2006:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2006, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


Among our recent subscribers are Keith Svagerko and James Clifford. 
Welcome aboard!  We now have 955 subscribers.

As noted late week, this issue is being sent a day late - sorry!
Many thanks to NBS member Richard Jozefiak for accepting our E-Sylum 
award at the ANA convention this week. Thanks also to Dave Perkins and 
Howard Daniel for transporting my donations for the NBS fundraising 
auction to the annual membership meeting.  And finally, happy sixth 
birthday to my son Tyler!   Have a great week, everyone.

Wayne Homren
Numismatic Bibliomania Society


Harold Levi writes: "I have published my book on the Confederate cent.  
I used, a print-on-demand publisher.  

The name of the book is "The Lovett Cent; a Confederate Story."  It 
is 312 pages total, about 250 pages of text and images.  The images 
are black and white.  It is 6x9 in paperback.  The price is $26.53 
plus shipping from the web site.

I can have the book printed in hardcover and/or color images, which 
will cost considerably more."

[Sounds like a bargain - place your orders, folks!  -Editor]


On August 15 the Evansville Courier & Press published an article 
about a local man's new book on the history of banking in Southern 

"In Pete Fulkerson's former life as a school teacher in Kansas City, 
Mo., a student wanting to buy a car sold him a small bag of assorted 
old coins and paper money for $50."

"The experience led Fulkerson to a lifetime of researching and 
collecting old paper money that bears the names of early banks that 
were located in towns in his native Southern Illinois."

"Fulkerson just wrote a new book, The History of National Banking 
in Southern Illinois - 1863 to 1935, which includes text and 
photographs pertaining to the early money and banks.

He said he didn't write his historical book on banking to make 
money, but, rather, for his love of bank history. Fulkerson said 
he hopes to break even on the book.

He has the history of 112 banks that were located in 76 towns in 
24 different counties in Illinois."

I contacted the reporter, Carol Wersich for more details. The 
price of the book is $85.00.  To obtain a copy, write to Fulkerson 
at 311 S. Third St., Carmi, Ill., 62821.  To believes she was told 
that 100 copies were printed, and 70% had been sold.  So don't delay 
if you want a copy for your library (or your society or institution's 

To read a the complete article, see 


Dave Lange writes: "I'm just back from the ANA convention (that's 
literally true, as a flight delay put me home around 3 am, and I've 
had just four hours sleep as I write this early in the morning). Here 
are some quick impressions from the event, written in a sleep-deprived 
This year's event was a marathon session for me. I had to work the 
pre-show at the Marriott Tech Center, too, so I was in Denver for 
over a week. As is usual for me at the annual convention, I was at 
our table from opening to closing each day, seeing little of the show 
other than our customers and the general public. In a pleasant break 
from most coin shows, the latter were a little less general than usual. 
It was extremely busy at our table, and I never got away during bourse 
hours except to answer nature's call and wolf down some greasy outrage 
that passed for lunch. There were, however, some memorable off-hours 
moments, presented here in no particular order.
The Numismatic Ambassadors' breakfast, sponsored by Numismatic News, 
was perhaps the best one in the past several years. The food was fresh, 
tasty, abundant (was it Pittsburgh where the food ran out?) and 
healthful, the speeches limited and entertaining, and the ending time 
right on the money for we bourse slaves. Kay Lenker was the lucky winner 
of a gold Buffalo bullion coin in her mystery packet, the rest of us 
getting nice though intrinsically less valuable souvenirs. Judy Kagin 
was introduced as the newest NA award recipient.
The NLG Bash ran smoothly and was over at a merciful hour. It was also 
among the more entertaining editions in recent years, Wendell being in 
fine form. Earlier in the day, a prominent and longtime member of the 
organization had raised the issue with me that the sheer number of 
awards was getting ridiculously out of hand and that someone (me, 
perhaps?) should write to the board about this. Since I had no idea of 
what was coming at that evening's event, my only frame of reference 
was previous NLG awards ceremonies. It was not until attending this 
year's bash that I understood what prompted his concern. 

There were more Extraordinary Merit awards (i.e., consolation prizes) 
than ever before. In the book category, I recall about half a dozen 
such supplemental awards for all books great and small. Of course, 
since I didn't win anything this year, it could easily be assumed that 
this is just sour grapes on my part, but I am genuinely concerned about 
the dilution of each award's significance. I honestly can't remember 
the actual winners in most categories, since there were so many others 
given awards alongside them, and this is truly an injustice to the formal
winners. I call upon my fellow NLG members to raise the alarm at such 
abuse of the awards program.
On one of my daily trips back from Greasy Junction, I dropped off 
several of the remaining tokens from my 2001 wedding with Ray Dillard, 
Mr. Roll 'em. Ray is a delight, and he can always be found at the 
Elongated Collectors Society booth with his coin elongating press. It 
took some trial and error, as these Patrick Mint tokens are thicker 
than most coins, but Ray managed to get some keepers, and one of these 
was gratefully donated to his collection. He charges nothing for this 
service and for lugging his heavy press to the shows, and it's always 
a crowd pleaser. Friday was the fifth anniversary of my wedding to 
Alba, and, since we couldn't be together, this was a nice way to 
commemorate the day.
As a prisoner of our booth from 8 to 7, I rarely get to enjoy the 
exhibits. I did pass through the exhibit aisles at the cruising speed 
of a 767, and I seem to recall there were coins and notes of various 
types, along with some great looking old books that I could read only 
if I'd graduated from Evelyn Wood. The U. S. Mint also had the original 
coiner's delivery book open to the Denver Mint entries from 1936. If 
the Mint would promise to publish these books in their entirety for the 
use of researchers, I'd actually promise to buy its entire 2007 
offerings of 4,873 different coins in Uncirculated, Proof, Semi-Proof, 
Satin, Special Mint Set, Matte, Off-Matte and Velveteen.
One of my ANA Summer Seminar students gave me a bison-head hat that 
I wore briefly on Wednesday to promote the release of my Buffalo Nickel 
book's new edition. It lasted less than an hour before the boss said 
"lose the hat or lose the job" (or words to that effect). Bob Van Ryzin 
of KP/FW Publications snapped a couple of photos during those brief 
moments, so it will likely appear in the numismatic press and on my 
Due to the convention closing a day early so that attendees could visit 
ANA headquarters on Sunday, the NGC crew went home Saturday evening, and 
I missed the banquet. Thus, I have no tales to tell of either event. I 
attend the ANA's banquet almost every year, and it's really not as bad 
as some would have us believe. I'm sorry I missed it this time.
Purchases of new books were many, as this year's ANA witnessed a bumper 
crop. I got Doug Winter's new edition on New Orleans gold and Dave 
Bowers' Red Book entry on Washington Quarters, both of which I didn't 
expect to be in print this soon. I also got the deluxe edition of the 
traditional Red Book, with a great chapter on Dick Yeo and Ken Bressett, 
as well as an accompanying medal. The book includes a wonderful, dual 
portrait of both men that is available only in the deluxe edition, which 
is not to be confused with the convention commemorative edition. The 
drawing is by Lincoln Cent expert and superb artist Chuck Daughtrey. 
If you're not already buying each of his famous engraver prints as 
they're issued, write this oversight down as something you'll deeply 
regret when they're sold out. 

I also acquired the new Volume 2 of the Cherrypickers' Guide which, 
like the other books, I haven't really had time to absorb. Therefore, 
there will be no reviews at this time, but they all look great at a 
glance. A special thanks to J. T. Stanton, Bill Fivaz and the Whitman 
folks for dedicating this edition to me. I am truly honored.
I saw but have not yet acquired John Dannreuther's new book on early 
U. S. gold. It is most impressive, and were it not for the fact that 
my bags were bursting at the seams, I would have bought it then and 
there. This will have to wait until the Long Beach show in a few weeks, 
but I'm really looking forward to tearing into it. I feel like I'm 
missing a title or two, since there were so many, but I'm sure I'll 
think of them later. Sadly, I had no time whatsoever to dig through 
the offerings of our own members. I saw John Burns, Charlie Davis and 
Orville Grady on the bourse floor, but the press of business kept me 
from examining any of their selections. I saw Remy Bourne, too, but I 
don't know whether he had a table.
On a closing note, I read with alarm the heading in the last issue of 
the E-Sylum that the "Rittenhouse Society Founders." Initially, I 
misinterpreted this to mean that the organization was folding just 
as I became a member. As always, when all else fails read the 
instructions. It turns out that the article was about the founders 
of the RS. Since it doesn't have its own website to my knowledge, I 
will use this venue to publicly thank these individuals for inviting 
me to join in their esteemed company. I am truly honored and humbled. 
I say this most sincerely, with none of the silliness evident in 
other parts of this message. I'm really looking forward to joining 
the long table at next year's breakfast."


Last week I recounted my search for the sculptor of the Woodrow 
Wilson Bridge tondos, learning that they were made by C. Paul 
Jennewein in 1961. Pete Smith writes: "There is a fine book on 
Jennewein by Shirley Reiff Howarth, “C. Paul Jennewein, Sculptor” 
available from the publisher, 
the Tampa Museum of Art.

Back when I was writing for The Numismatist, I did one of my monthly 
columns on C. Paul Jennewein. This was shortly after the Justice 
Department covered up “Minnie Lou,” the aluminum figure of Justice 
that stood behind the Attorney General during press conferences.

I also did an article on Jennewein for The MCA Advisory, journal of 
Medal Collectors of America. I attempted to list all of his sculptural 
and medallic works. That listing is now on the club website,"

Roger deWardt Lane writes: "I knew the name Jennewein from a medal I 
picked up the first of this year.  Check it out at: 
[It's the 1965 medal with profiles of Eisenhower, Alexander and 
Koenig. -Editor]


Dick Johnson writes: "Somer James was a Canadian businessman who went 
into the stamp and coin business in Winnipeg, Canada. He was also an 
author -- and publisher -- of numismatic books. With his partner, H.C. 
Taylor they wrote and published "The Guide Book of Canadian Coins" in 
1962 under the imprint of Canadian Numismatic Publishing Institute. 
The book went through several editions and Somer James added Canadian 
paper currency and tokens to subsequent editions. Another of his 
publications was modern British coins. He published works of Jerome 
Remick, Anthony Downe and Patrick Finn.
I was editor of Coin World when he first published his Canadian catalog 
in 1962. He sent in a review of the book he had paid someone to write. 
I refused to run it, instead wrote it as a news item rather than a 
review.  Miffed at first, we met at coin conventions in later years 
and became good friends. Great guy who was dedicated to the field."


David Gladfelter writes: "Karl Kabalac kindly responded by phone and 
email to my request in last week's E-Sylum for information on the 
officers of the State Bank at New Brunswick, N. J. as of December 
1865. The information he provided is evidence that a note of this 
bank dated November 10, 1865, is not an issued note, but a falsely 
filled in remainder. 

As such it is still the latest dated genuine New Jersey obsolete 
bank note presently known. (A supposedly later dated note of the 
Mechanics Bank at Newark is either fraudulent or is an erroneous 
listing, because this bank became Mechanics National Bank of Newark 
a year prior.)"


Gerald Buckmaster writes: "I have created an entry article at for 
everyone's reference.  I do have a "seed" list of titles, however I 
hesitate to publish as I believe each auction catalog should have 
it's own article linked to the above entry, an entry about the 
auction house, an entry about the prominent collection, etc.  Probably 
the best way to fulfill the original request is to use a web resource 
Ron Benice reports a negative experience, however: "Tom Delorey's 
comments on the accuracy of Wikipedia are right on the money.  If 
you search for the first appearance of "In God We Trust" on United 
States paper money, you'll "learn" that it was on the back of a 
Florida national bank note in 1863.  Florida seceded and joined the 
Confederacy in 1861 and didn't get a chartered national bank until 


Harold Levi writes: "In the last few issues there have been some 
comments about print-on-demand, and related issues. I have just 
published my book on the Confederate cent using print-on-demand, 
and thought I would share my thoughts and experience thus far. The 
name of the book is; “The Lovett Cent; a Confederate Story.”

I am not in a position to print one or two thousand copies of the 
book, and then depend on selling them to recover my costs. This is 
not a lack of confidence in by book but a purely financial decision. 
I am building a new house, and need the money for that project. 
Print-on-demand is exactly that, a book is printed when it is ordered; 
at least this is what happens at If you order one book, 
then one is printed, if you order ten books, then ten are printed. 
It is all electronic and computer controlled.

Lulu offers distribution services that include an ISBN. The service 
that is available depends on meeting certain rules. In the case of 
my book, I bought their Global Distribution service, which includes 
the book being listed with Ingram. This makes the book available to, Barnes and Noble, along with other book sellers, both 
domestic and foreign. The cost was $99, my total cost.

Primarily, books can be 8 ½ by 11 inches or 6 by 9 inches in size, 
binding can be paperback or hardcover. The images are embedded in 
the text, and can be in color or black and white. You can design 
your own cover or select a standard. The manuscript data file can 
be one of many different formats, but all that is printed is Adobe 
PDF. I had help converting my MS/Word manuscript to PDF. Since the 
book has footnotes, frames (for sidebars), captions (for images), 
embedded images, and Word generated Table of Contents, List of Figures, 
and Index we had problems getting the file converted to properly reflect 
the Word file. If your manuscript file is simple, then Lulu can convert 
it for you. If your manuscript is complex, then I recommend you convert 
it yourself since there will be several trial and error conversions.

Since the manuscript is stored on a computer as a data file, a book 
does not have to go out of print. The data file can remain on the 
computer indefinitely. Also, I see this as a means to republish old 
and out of print books. The primary expense and work of republishing 
an old book would be the OCR scanning or retyping of the old book. My 
research would have benefited from owning one of Dr. William Lee’s 
books on Confederate notes and bonds (there are only thirty), but no 
matter how much I would like to own one of these books I can not afford 
one. However, a twenty or thirty dollar print-on-demand copy would have 
done the job."


On the Pittsburgh Numismatic Society news group this week, there 
was a discussion about the Canadian Victory nickel of 1943-1945. 
Chick Ambrass writes: "If I am not mistaken, it is speculated that 
this is the only coin ever to have used three different languages 
for its inscriptions: Latin, English, and Morse code."   Some web 
pages were referenced in the discussion, and I've found a couple 

"The 12-sided coin was introduced on January 1, 1943. It was 
yellowish-brown and made from an alloy called tombac. On one side 
was the face of King George the Sixth. But the Canadian beaver that 
had been on the other side was no more. What Canadians saw instead 
was an engraving of the letter V with a flaming torch in the middle. 
And below it, the words Five Cents." 

"The V had two meanings. The Roman numeral for the No. 5, but, more 
significantly, it was based on British prime minister Winston 
Churchill's two-fingered salute for "Victory." 

The coin came to be known as the Victory Nickel. 

But, there was more to this coin... All around the edge of the inside 
rim on the V side were tiny, raised dots and bars, not seen on any 
other Canadian coin. 

The engraved dots and dashes are Morse Code. Few Canadians knew this. 
They thought the dots and dashes were simply design. The dots and 
dashes spell out words. The good-luck, war-effort words, are: We Win 
When We Work Willingly."

This page shows an image of the coin's reverse:  

This article spells out the Morse Code message: 

[There are certainly plenty of coins and banknotes displaying two 
languages, and probably many banknotes displaying three.  But coins 
have a smaller surface area with less room for wording.  Is it true 
that this nickel is the only one to display three "languages"?   If 
not, what are some of the others?  Has any other coin included Morse 
Code?  -Editor]


"The Bank of Canada has withdrawn a proposal to introduce a $200 
banknote after a survey of retailers showed strong opposition. 

The central bank has been casting about for a high-denomination 
replacement for the $1,000 banknote after it ceased to be printed 
in May 2000 to help thwart money launderers and drug dealers, who 
prefer large bills." 

"There currently exists a significant current of opposition to the 
introduction of a $200 banknote," concludes a heavily censored report 
by Toronto-based SES Canada Research Inc., obtained under the Access 
to Information Act. 

"Asked why a $200 bill was not acceptable, retailers answered most 
often that they feared it would be counterfeited. Others were worried 
that a customer might clean out all the change in the till after a 
single transaction. 

"No design work for a new bill had been carried out, nor had a proposal 
gone to federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, who must approve any 
new denomination."

To read the complete article, see: 


According to an August 20 report, "Banks and other deposit-taking 
financial institutions in Zimbabwe will be closed Saturday to allow 
a controversial currency change-over, the central bank announced Friday.

The central bank introduced currency reforms, including introduction of 
a new currency, at the end of the last month ostensibly to fight 
corruption and money laundering.

The deadline for switching to the new currency is 21 August, and the 
central bank said the closure of banks Saturday would allow the 
institutions to gear up for the introduction of the new currency.

Three zeroes have been lopped off the old currency, among other 
currency reforms, to make it convenient to transact."

To read the complete article, see: 


"Bill Burd writes: "Harry's work on the 1873 coinage was published 
in a series of articles in the Numismatic Scrapbook Magazine from 
March 1957 through December 1958.  In 1960 he published a revised 
limited edition of 500 copies in a booklet form titled "1873-1873".  
I have number 500 with a special hardbound cover and autographed." 

David Gladfeler writes: "Harry X Boosel's articles on the numismatics 
of the year 1873 didn't stop with his 1960 book. My copy (signed and 
numbered 468) has 4 supplements bound in at the back, the latest one 
dated 1967. Five more loose ones came with it, some annotated by Harry 
himself. They are:

    • "The Spanish-American War -- 1873 -- Almost!" 
   The Numismatist, September 1966.
    • "Visit of the Shah of Persia to London -- June 1873," 
   Numismatic Scrapbook magazine May 1972.
    • "The Centennial of the 1873 Halves," NSM April, 1973.
    • "The Mystery of the 1873 $3 Gold Piece," The Numismatist, 
   January 1981.
    • "The Silver Coinage of 1873, and the So-Called Crime of 1873," 
   offprint of the Coinage of the Americas Conference, American 
   Numismatic Society, 1987.

Few collectors are as focused as he was!"


Len Augsberger writes: "I read the Boosel piece with interest, 
as I have been keeping a file on him, to write an article someday.  
Boosel also consigned literature to Fred Lake's sale #1, 5/17/1989,
including a run of Redbooks, some signed by Yeoman.  He also consigned 
to Kagin #53, 4/24/1981 per Gengerke.  He died 8/18/1994.  No doubt 
there is an obituary in the Chicago Tribune around that time, even 
though his address is given as Miami.  

The Numismatist coin club meeting reports, c. 1930-1940 contain 
numerous references to Boosel under the Chicago coin club.  I purchased 
an 1873 quarter some time back which turned out to be a Boosel piece, 
I was pleased to make the attribution as Chicago is my home city."

Eric von Klinger forwarded Harry Boosel's 1994 Coin World obituary. 
Here are a few excerpts:

"Harry X Boosel, ``Mr. 1873,'' a longtime coin collector, researcher, 
Assay Commission member, local club officer and former governor of the 
American Numismatic Association, died Aug. 18 in Chicago.

He wrote in the introduction to his 1873 monograph, ``Research of 
this kind is usually a `labor of love' without thought of renumeration 
other than the personal satisfaction of achieving something no one 
else has accomplished, and of finding out things to satisfy a natural 

He is also remembered for another major contribution to numismatics. 
He ``uncovered'' the long-forgotten collection of Nathan M. Kaufman, 
labeled the ``find of the century,'' in 1976. Mr. Boosel had first 
encountered the collection in 1943 when assigned by the U.S. Army to 
Marquette, Mich. The collection was on display in a Marquette bank, 
in a special room built specifically for the coins. However, he did 
not then have access to two safes containing some of the rarest coins. 

More than 30 years later, Mr. Boosel returned to Marquette and was 
reintroduced to the collection, which had long been forgotten by most 
in the hobby. He was granted access to the two safes and uncovered 
one of the most important collections built during the 19th century. 

[Can anyone tell us more about the collection of Nathan M. Kaufman?  
How many years was it on display?  Is there any ephemera associated 
with it, such as an exhibit catalog?  -Editor]


Dick Hanscom of Fairbanks, Alaska writes: "Perhaps someone can explain 
the following, from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 2004 Annual 
Report, page 19:
"a. Gold Certificates

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to issue gold certificates 
to the Reserve Banks to monetize gold held by the U.S. Treasury. Payment 
for the gold certificates by the Reserve Banks is made by crediting 
equivalent amounts in dollars into the account established for the U.S. 
Treasury.  These gold certificates held by the Reserve Banks are required 
to be backed by gold of the U.S. Treasury. The U.S. Treasury may reacquire 
the gold certificates at any time and the Reserve Banks must deliver them 
to the U.S. Treasury.  At such time, the U.S. Treasury's account is 
charged and the Reserve Banks' gold certificate accounts are lowered. 
The value of gold for purposes of backing the gold certificates is set 
by law at $42 2/9 per fine troy ounce. The Board of Governors allocates 
the gold certificates among Reserve Banks once a year based on average 
balance of Federal Reserve notes outstanding in each District."
My questions are:
1) Are there actual certificates or is this just a bookkeeping entry?

2) The U.S. Treasury can deplete the nation's gold reserves without 
congressional authorization?

3) Where else is gold valued at $42 2/9 per ounce and how do I get 
in on this deal?
What a country!!"


An August 17th article in Asharq Al-Awsat, a leading Arabic 
International newspaper highlights the history of currency in 
Saudi Arabia:

"I don't know anything about Saudi currency, except that it is 
dispensed by ATM machines", said Fahd al Amri, aged 25, as he paid 
for his shopping at a center in the Saudi capital. 

Many Saudis, like Fahd, do not know the story of the "French Riyal" 
coin, which used to be widespread in Saudi Arabia, before the country 
was united by King Abdulaziz. It remained in use until 1928, when it 
was replaced by the Saudi Riyal. 

Despite the French Riyal being minted in Austria and called a thaler 
(dollar), it was known in the Arabian Peninsula as the "French Riyal" 
and showed a portrait of Empress Maria Theresa on the front and the 
Habsburg Double Eagle on the back. In Najd, it was popularly known as 
"Abu Shosha". 

"Following the "Desert Storm" operation in 1991 to liberate Kuwait, 
the Saudi government demanded Yemeni workers be sponsored by Saudis, 
thereby halting the transfer of money back to their families, according 
to Abdullah al Rimi, a wholesale trader in al Bathaa market in central 
Riyadh. Yemenis then found themselves obliged to search for the buried 
treasures of Austrian dollars, in order to provide them with financial 
liquidity to conduct their businesses. Convoys carrying thalers were 
seen heading from the markets of northern Yemen to Jeddah, a city well 
known as a center for currency exchange, to convert them into Austrian 

Another popular currency was the Golden pound, which weighed 8 grams. 
It was commonly referred to as "Abu Khayyal" (the knight) as it pictured 
King George V. The coin was introduced from India and the parts of the 
Arabian Peninsula that were under British control. Ottoman currencies 
were also widespread, owing to their fixed weight and high caliber. 
They were known as the Majidiya. Other Indian coins such as the Rupee 
and Anan were also in circulation." 

"Salem al Bichi, a collector of old currencies, said the majority of 
Saudis do not collect paper or coin money. Despite the presence of old 
currencies in rural areas, their owners often do not realize their value 
and sometimes die without telling their loved ones where they have 
hidden them."

"The offices of the Saudi Monetary Agency include a Currency Museum, 
which charts the history of money and includes pre-Islamic currencies, 
as well as money used in more recent times, in five halls."

To read the complete article, see: 

[I located a web site for the Saudi Monetary Agency include a Currency 
Museum.  Click on "Currency Museum" at the left for view photos of the 
five halls.  -Editor]


According to an August 16 article in The Cape Cod Times, a rare medal 
from the opening of a seven-mile canal connecting Cape Cod Bay and 
Buzzards Bay traded hands recently.

"A jazz band leader who cruises the Cape Cod Canal every Sunday bought 
a rare bronze medallion commemorating that water channel on eBay 

The medallion likely was minted to mark the opening of the canal 
in 1914, according to the Cape Cod Times' archive. Only a handful 
are known to exist."

"The coin is nearly 3 inches in diameter. It is marked from Reed & 
Barton, a Taunton silversmith company. On the front of the coin two 
women, one likely a Pilgrim and one an American Indian, shake hands.

Two similar medallions are at the Cape Cod Canal Visitor Center in 

The 7-mile canal connects Cape Cod Bay and Buzzards Bay.

In addition to his musical link to the canal, with 26 years of 
performances on its waters, Childs is a rare coin collector, too."

To read the complete article (and view an image of the medal), see: 

[Is anyone familiar with this medal?  -Editor]


The August 18th Priceton Packet had an article about the university's 
coin collection:

"The maker of the bronze Ming knife coin that was donated in July to 
the Princeton University Numismatic Collection could never have foreseen 
that the ancient Chinese money would one day end up in an online database.
"There is no existing good database for coinage anywhere, so I devised 
my own database," said Princeton's Curator of Numismatics Alan M. Stahl 
of the electronic catalog that will feature the Ming knife.

With a doctorate in medieval history from the University of Pennsylvania 
and 20 years of experience as a curator at the American Numismatic Society 
in New York, Mr. Stahl assumed his position at the university two years 
ago. He followed on the heels of longtime curator of the collection, Brooks 
Levy, who was instrumental in adding to the university's modern coinage 
holdings — including a collection of euros, Mr. Stahl said."

Classes from a variety of departments regularly visit Firestone to 
observe and hold pieces of the collection, and members of the public 
are welcome to request a viewing of various pieces of coinage.

"Princeton's numismatics collection may not be the largest university 
coin collection, Mr. Stahl said, but it is the only university numismatics 
collection that has been continuously curated since its establishment, 
in 1849."

Beyond coinage, the numismatics collection features a variety of medals 
as well as plaster casts, paper money and financial instruments. One of 
the medals, from the Revolutionary War-era, was awarded by the Continental 
Congress to Henry Lee — aka Light-Horse Harry — who graduated from 
Princeton in 1774. Given to the university by the Friends of the Princeton 
University Library in 1935, the medal was subsequently forgotten — and 
only rediscovered by Mr. Stahl himself as he prepared an exhibit for the 
Friends' 75th anniversary celebration in 2005."

To read the complete article, see


"Images of Confederate currency have multiplied in value for a South 
Carolina artist painting new annals in American history.

"The Color of Money: Acrylics by John W. Jones," open through Oct. 29 
at the Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum in Myrtle 
Beach, shows slavery's link to bankrolling an economy.

Since first seeing a Confederate banknote image of a slave picking 
cotton and many other similar vignettes on antebellum Southern states' 
money in 1996, Jones has made the colors and interpretation larger than 
life with paintbrushes. About 50 artworks and the currency that 
inspired them make up his traveling exhibit."

To read the complete article, see:

"While working in a Charleston blueprint shop in 1996, graphic artist 
John W. Jones saw something that changed his life and launched a career: 
the image of slaves picking cotton, printed on the face of a Confederate 
banknote. On further investigation, he found dozens of similar images on 
the currency of antebellum Southern states – a detail never mentioned in 
any historical account of the Confederacy Jones had seen.

The discovery inspired Jones to interpret those tiny and obscure images 
as a series of boldly colored acrylic paintings that expanded on the 
scenes and restored the essential humanity of their subjects. "

To view the museum exhibit web page and images of Jones' work, see: 


Len Augsberger writes: "Anyone who has worked in research archives 
will appreciate this - see the last paragraph at the end."

"The U.S. government has misplaced the original recording of the 
first moon landing, including astronaut Neil Armstrong's famous "one 
small step for man, one giant leap for mankind," a NASA spokesman said 
on Monday.

Armstrong's famous space walk, seen by millions of viewers on July 20, 
1969, is among transmissions that NASA has failed to turn up in a year 
of searching, spokesman Grey Hautaloma said.

"We haven't seen them for quite a while. We've been looking for over a 
year and they haven't turned up," Hautaloma said."

"The material was held by the National Archives but returned to NASA 
sometime in the late 1970s, he said.

"We're looking for paperwork to see where they last were," he said."

To read the complete Reuters article, see 


Last week I wrote that "regulations probably prohibit a counterfeit 
being anywhere, even in the National Numismatic Collection - I've 
never heard of  counterfeits being part of the collection."

Bob Leuver writes: "Counterfiets are part of many numismatists'  
collections.  However, the collecting of counterfeits is not publicized.  
I would assume that a number of Secret Service agents own counterfeit 
currency that they were not required to turn in, if part of an 
investigation.  Counterfeits are oddities.

I was in a drug store in Key West in 1981 with my wife (probably 
should stress that).  A man came in and complained to the druggist, 
whom he  apparently knew, that someone had passed to him a $10 bill.  
He knew it was  counterfeit as it was smaller than normal.  I listened 
to the rantings for  a while, then went up and displayed my Treasury 
credential (badge and  credential).  I asked to see the note.  It 
appeared genuine but was indeed smaller than usual.  I gave the man 
$10 and I kept the bill.  It is unusual.  
For anyone involved in detecting counterfeits or developing strategies 
to combat counterfeiting, actual counterfeits are interesting."


David F. Fanning writes: "Yossi Dotan had asked for advice on typography 
and numerals. One of his examples suggested that there should not be 
a space between the digit and a metric unit:

-- The 11-mile (17km)-long Vasco da Gama bridge was opened in 1998.
[ Hyphen between number and the unabbreviated word "mile"; no hyphen 
and no space between number and the lower-case abbreviated "km"; hyphen 
between the length and the word "long."

This is one of my pet peeves (of which I've plenty). I am the editor 
of a technical journal in engineering and use SI (the International 
System of Units, scientific metric) all the time. The standard for SI 
SI-10) clearly states that there must be a space between the digit and 
the unit. Just as one wouldn't type "it was fourmeters long," you 
shouldn't type "it was 4m long."

Dick Johnson writes: "Yossi Dotan should not worry about hyphenating 
in his book, mentioned in last week's E-Sylum. As long as it is a 
UNIFORM style throughout your book, it should be satisfactory. 

Numismatic writers should have a Style Rule book for all of the 
numismatic field. (I am attempting to fulfill that desire for over 
1800 terms in my encyclopedia of coin and medal technology, currently 
nearing completion. I am down to the last "dirty dozen" entries.) 

Until then the best thing available is the Style Rules published a 
number of years ago by Coin World. This was an excellent compilation, 
being the guide for everything published in CW. By extension it solves 
most all the problems that might arise in all numismatic writing. If 
this hasn't been reprinted, it should be. Ask Beth Deisher for a copy. 

I agree with all the style rules stated therein, save one rule -- the 
spelling of "mintmark." Half the languages in the world have this as 
one word, half as two words. Coin World style rule is to capitalize 
the M, as "Mint mark." 

Sorry, I initiated that style rule when I was editor of Coin World 45 
years ago, and it stuck. Now I am convinced it should be one word, and 
without the capital M. (I was enamored with the word at the time, I 
wanted to make it special, thus the capital M; now I feel it should 
be a stand-alone single word.)"


According to an August 19th report, "A letter from a group of 
mainland Chinese readers to The Epoch Times revealed that the Shanghai 
Branch of The People's' Bank of China recently hanged posters in 
residential areas that read: "Prohibition of intentionally destroying 
or scribbling on national currency, forbidding scribbling on currency." 

The letter points out that this was the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)'s 
desperate and weak countermeasure against Chinese people spreading the 
messages of withdrawing from the CCP by writing "Nine Commentaries" and 
"The Three Withdrawals" on national currency. 

"Over 12.5 million Chinese people have thus far quit the CCP and its 
affiliated organizations. The main method used for withdrawing from 
the Party is to publish a resignation statement on the Epoch Times 
website. Many people also paste their announcements on public bulletin 
boards, bus station boards, and electricity poles. The aforementioned 
methods are used to circumnavigate the Internet blockade used by the 
CCP which prevents a great number of people from publishing their 
resignation statements online. 

Since last October, many more people have begun to write their 
resignation statements on currency. They often leave messages like, 
"Heaven is eliminating the CCP," "Quit the CCP to save yourself" and 
"Spread the Nine Commentaries and quit the CCP quickly." Money has 
become one of the major channels for spreading the news of the "the 
Nine Commentaries" and "The Three withdrawals." 

Slogans are usually written on one or two yuan bills. People buy bus 
tickets with them through the automatic ticket machines in many cities.
These are also the most common bills used in supermarkets. Writing CCP 
resignation statements on money is thought to be safe and effective 
because it circulates quickly and is thus able to have a very wide 

To read the complete article (and view images of the notes) see: 


It's not exactly numismatic, but everyone likes a good treasure hunt 
story.  Len Augsberger sent this Associated Press article about America 
Online's newest search engine - a backhoe:

"AOL is preparing to dig for buried gold and platinum on property in 
Massachusetts owned by the parents of a man it sued for sending millions 
of unwanted spam e-mails to its customers.

AOL said Tuesday it intends to search for gold and platinum bars the 
company suspects are hidden near the home of Davis Wolfgang Hawke's 
parents on two acres in Medfield, Massachusetts. The family said it 
will fight in court to oppose AOL's plans.

AOL won a $12.8 million judgment last year in U.S. District Court in 
Virginia against Hawke but has been unable to contact Hawke to collect 
any of the money he was ordered to pay. AOL accused Hawke of violating 
federal and state anti-spam laws by sending unwanted e-mails to its 
subscribers and won its case in a default judgment against Hawke, 
who didn't show up in court.

"I don't care if they dig up the entire yard. They're just going to 
make fools of themselves," said Peggy Greenbaum, Hawke's mother. 
"There's absolutely no reason for them to think that Davis Hawke 
would be stupid enough to bury gold on our property. My son is 
long gone."

To read the complete article, see: 

[So it seems AOL is looking for new sources of revenue now that 
it's decided to give it's service away for free.  -Editor]


Len Augsberger sent this article: "In a lengthy interview with 
Morgunbladid, Reykjavik, last Saturday July 29th, chess legend and 
world champion Bobby Fischer revealed that he has been in a long 
and difficult dispute with the Union Bank of Switzerland... "

"The UBS even liquidated all of Fischer's gold coins, from his 
match with Boris Spassky in Sveti Stefan in 1992, and other 
investments, without his prior approval at a time when the rate 
for gold was very unfavorable."

To read the complete article, see: 

[Do any of our chess fans know the story behind the coins?  Were 
the match participants paid in gold bullion?  Were they ordinary 
gold coins or commemoratives related to the match?-Editor]


This week's featured web site is on India's First Coinage.  "The 
earliest coins of India are commonly known as punch-marked coins. 
As the name suggests, these coins bear the symbols of various types, 
punched on pieces of silver of specific weight. Interestingly earliest 
Indian coins have no defined shapes and they were mostly uniface. 

Secondly, these coins lack any inscriptions written in contemporary
languages and almost always struck in silver. These unique characters 
make early Indian coins very different than their contemporaries in 
Greece. Many early historians believed that concept of coinage was 
introduced in India by Greeks.

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