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All Posts Tagged With: "coin books"

Scott Travers’ ‘Survival Manual’ Now Available in Seventh Edition

(New York, NY) – Gold and grading share the spotlight in The Coin Collector’s Survival Manual, Seventh Edition, the just-released latest edition of the perennial hobby bestseller by award-winning author Scott A. Travers. Published by Random House, this thoroughly updated 400-page book also contains two new and timely fact-filled chapters; one on buying and selling gold coins and other precious metal items, the other on recent innovations in coin grading.

With gold scaling record-high price levels, Travers examines the impact the precious metals boom is having on the rare coin market. Citing one expert’s prediction that gold might soar to $10,000 an ounce, he shows why this is not far-fetched. A new section of the book looks at possible negative effects for collectors and dealers if burdensome IRS 1099 reporting requirements are not changed before their scheduled implementation in 2012.

Travers also provides pointers on how to avoid being victimized when buying or selling valuables containing precious metal, and goes behind the scenes to show in detail how buyers determine the value of gold and silver in items they buy from the public. Travers reveals insider secrets for getting the most money when selling gold and silver coins, jewelry or “scrap.”

He cautions that high-profile gold buyers who advertise extensively often pay rock-bottom prices, “luring cash-starved victims with slick TV commercials or eye-catching newspaper ads promising ‘top dollar’ for the gold that’s sitting idle in their jewelry boxes or drawers.”

A new chapter titled “A Grade Leap Forward” explores what Travers calls “the new math of coin grading” – the enhancement made possible in early 2010 when the Professional Coin Grading Service introduced its PCGS Secure Plus™ system and added intermediate “plus” (+) designations to coins at the high end of their grade level. The Numismatic Guaranty Corporation of America (NGC) soon began offering similar grading.

Exclusive first-time photographs show the differences between “regular” and “plus” grades.

Travers also explains how Secure Plus™ combats coin “doctoring” and shares insiders’ tips on how to get the greatest value when buying and selling PCGS and NGC plus-grade coins.

Hundreds of never-before-published digitized coin images give readers a clear look at subtle grading nuances and ways to detect altered coins. In a beefed-up color section, surprising photos reveal how the same coin was given different grades by leading services. It also shows examples of difficult-to-detect doctored and altered coins, plus endangered coins rescued from harm’s way through proper conservation.

Exclusive color photographs pinpoint how to distinguish between Morgan dollars and Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles that are Mint State-65 and Mint State 65+ — a small difference in grade that can make a significant difference in marketplace value. (more…)

Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Book Auction to be Held in NYC in January

On January 8, 2011, numismatic booksellers Kolbe & Fanning will conduct a public auction sale at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York City in conjunction with the New York International Numismatic Convention.

The sale features 500 lots of rare and desirable works of numismatic interest, including highlights from the superb Alan Luedeking Latin American numismatic Library, classic nineteenth- and early twentieth-century works on Russian coins and medals from the library of Dr. Ira Rezak, the Dr. Jeff Hosford collection of Crosbyana, key works on ancient coins, and great classic works on American numismatics, some from the library of the New Netherlands Coin Company. Additional consignors to the sale include Norwegian numismatist Jan Olav Aamlid, Minnesota dealer Allan Davisson and the estate of the late Northern California coin dealer Robert R. Johnson.

There are any number of rarities in the sale, covering the numismatic spectrum.

A printed catalogue may be obtained by sending $25 to: KOLBE & FANNING NUMISMATIC BOOKSELLERS LLC, 141 W JOHNSTOWN ROAD, GAHANNA OH 43230-2700. The catalogue is also accessible free of charge at Kolbe & Fanning website: www.numislit.com.

The sale features no fewer than seven original editions of Sylvester Crosby’s Early Coins of America, including two from the library of the author and five other quite special copies. Other American rarities include an original 1925 Browning work on quarter dollars annotated by Walter Breen; a nice 1921 John Story Jenks sale with original photographic plates; three Eckfeldt and Du Bois works featuring actual gold examples from the California Gold Rush; a superb deluxe leather-bound set of the virtually unknown 1881 edition of Loubat’s Medallic History of the United States; all three of James Mease’s extremely rare 1821-1838 works on United States numismatics, the earliest works on the topic written from a numismatic perspective; B. Max Mehl’s own set of Mehl’s Numismatic Monthly; George Woodside’s own annotated copy, with plates, of the 1892 sale catalogue of his collection of United States pattern coins; the unique and extensive numismatic archive of Chicagoan Michael A. Powills, a noted coin collector prominent in American Numismatic Association affairs and the leading numismatic book dealer of his time, containing many thousands of letters from the key movers and shakers in American numismatics, circa 1930-1980; papers relating to the Dr. John E. Wilkison collection of United States pattern gold coins; and a deluxe edition of Valentine’s famed 1924 work on fractional currency, annotated by Walter Breen.

Classic works on medieval and modern coins and medals include a superb set of the 1791 Beskrivelse over Danske Mynter og Medailler from the library of the Prime Minister of Denmark, along with other classic works on Scandinavian numismatics including the extremely rare supplement to the Beskrivelse; a number of rare and important 16th- and 17th-century merchant guides, often termed “Coin Books”; several very rare works on coining technology; rarities on Scottish and English numismatics from the Allan Davisson library; the first 21 volumes of Rivista Italiana, 1888-1908; the firm’s own annotated copies of over 300 Glendining & Co. auction catalogues, 1966-1986; and two leather-bound presentation volumes on Canadian numismatics written by Alfred Sandham. (more…)

Kolbe & Fanning’s 119th auction sale, closing on November 18, 2010.

Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers announce their 119th auction sale, closing on November 18, 2010. The 60-page, 588-lot catalogue comprises a diverse selection of interesting and elusive works on ancient, medieval and modern numismatics, and is particularly rich in rare and unusual works on American numismatics.

Featured in the sale among the many interesting lots of American interest are: the Currency Act of 1764, a rare British Parliamentary Act regulating American colonial paper money, the severe restriction of which provided in part the justification of the American Revolution; the Wayne Homren collection of some fifty early American newspapers with numismatic content, including a 1787 description of Fugio coppers, Birmingham coppers in 1752, a 1788 account of the Massachusetts Mint, George Washington’s 1792 comments on the establishment of the U.S. Mint, a contemporary account of 1794 dollars, early Mint Reports, a contemporary account of the 1851 Lewis Roper sale, and the 1857 loss of the S.S. Central America; nice examples of the first two coin publications of Q. David Bowers, issued in 1955 and 1956, and specially bound combined presentation editions of both the Garrett and Norweb collection sales; a special hardbound edition of Barney Bluestone’s famous Grinnell paper money sales; a 1914 letter from S.H. Chapman to William H. Woodin, discussing plated Gable sale catalogues; Evelyn’s 1697 Numismata, which includes the earliest illustration of the St. Patrick’s coinage; Sanborn Partridge’s rare 1979 article on Vermont coins, hand-annotated by the author; the famous 1878 Adolph Weyl sale of the Fonrobert collection of over 6,000 American and Canadian coins, tokens and medals; a nice first edition, first printing of the Red Book; a rare antebellum children’s guide book with currency tables, published in 1857 in Charleston by William Babcock; Confederate States of America publications on currency; a nautical almanac for the year 1803 signed by early American naval hero Thomas Truxtun that may well have accompanied Truxtun when he captured the French frigate L’Insurgente in 1799 and during the successful encounter in 1800 with La Vengeance, which resulted in President Jefferson presenting Truxtun with the first Congressional medal made in the United States; an interesting collection of American numismatic literature from the Civil War years; and two of the rarest limited editions of the Red Book: the 2008 ANS sesquicentennial and 2008 NLG Bash volumes, limited to editions of 250 and 135 copies respectively.

A few of the important works on ancient, medieval and modern numismatics include: a fine copy of John Evelyn’s 1697 Numismata, the first substantial work on English medals, once in the libraries of Rogers Ruding, Matthew Young and Edward Hawkins; a set of the Forni reprint of Babelon’s Traité des Monnaies Grecques et Romaines; a handsomely bound sales room copy of the iconic 1974 Zurich Kunstfreundes sale of superb ancient Greek coins, with buyers’ names and prices; a nice selection of Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum fascicules; the first 15 volumes, 1960-1989, of Numizmatika i Epigrafika; Medina’s classic 1924 Medallas Europeas Relativas à América; Cayón’s 1990-95 four-volume Compendio de las Monedas del Imperio Romano; the seldom-encountered Forni reprint of Imhoof-Blumer’s Die Antiken Münzen Nord-Griechenlands; and Éditions Spéciales of seven Victor Gadoury works on French coins.

A printed catalogue may be obtained by sending $10 to: KOLBE & FANNING NUMISMATIC BOOKSELLERS LLC, 141 W JOHNSTOWN ROAD, GAHANNA OH 43230-2700. The catalogue is also accessible free of charge on the Kolbe & Fanning website at www.numislit.com. (more…)

Some Further Thoughts on Carson City Double Eagle Gold Coins

By Doug Winter – www.RareGoldCoins.com

I’ve been working on a third edition of my book on Carson City gold coins. For some odd reason, I’ve been working from back to front, meaning that I’ve done the new research of double eagles before following this with eagles and half eagles. I’ve been able to uncover some really eye-opening new information on the rarity and price levels of Carson City double eagles and I’d like to share a few tidbits.

The last Carson City book that I produced was published in 2001, so almost a full decade has passed. My first impression about the market for Carson City double eagles is that it has become far, far more active than ever. Prices have risen significantly since 2001, especially for rarities and for high grade pieces.

In 2001, the five rarest Carson City double eagles in terms of overall rarity (i.e., total known) were the 1870-CC, 1891-CC, 1871-CC, 1878-CC and 1879-CC (these last two issues were tied for fourth rarest). In 2010, the five rarest Carson City double eagles in terms of overall rarity are the 1870-CC, 1871-CC, 1891-CC, 1879-CC and 1885-CC (these last two issues were tied for fourth rarest).

The 1870-CC has remained an extremely rare coin, despite a surprisingly high frequency of auction appearance in the middle part of this decade. I had previously thought 35-45 were known. Today, I think that number is around 40-50. This includes a number of low grade coins and at least five or six that are either damaged or cleaned to the point that can not be graded by PCGS or NGC.

The rarity of the 1891-CC seems to have diminished quite a bit. I think there are two reasons for this. The first is that I overestimated its rarity in 2001. The second is that a significant number of examples have been found in Europe and other overseas sources. This date hasn’t become plentiful in higher grades but it is far more available in AU50 to AU55 than I ever remember it being before.

The 1871-CC seems more available as well. In 2001, this issue was very hard to find in any grade and it was almost never seen above AU50. Today it is more available and the number of coins graded AU53 to AU55 has risen dramatically. I would attribute much of this to gradeflation as the majority of the 1871-CC double eagles that I see in AU53 and AU55 holders are “enthusiastically” graded, to say the least. In properly graded Mint State, the 1871-CC remains exceedingly rare.

A date whose rarity has become more apparent is the 1885-CC. In the 2001 edition of my book, this date was not even listed in the top six rarest Carson City double eagles. I now rank it as being tied for fourth along with the 1879-CC.

Everyone loves a sleeper, right? The dates that I believe are underrated (and undervalued) in the Carson City double eagle series include the 1872-CC, 1877-CC, 1882-CC and 1892-CC.

In higher grades (AU50 and above), the rarity scale of the Carson City double eagle series has remained remarkably consistent. In 2001, I stated that the 1870-CC, 1871-CC, 1879-CC, 1878-CC, 1891-CC and 1872-CC were, in that order, the six rarest issues. In 2010, I believe the six rarest are the 1870-CC, 1871-CC, 1878-CC, 1879-CC, 1872-CC and 1891-CC. In other words, the same six dates are still the keys in higher grades but there are now some minor changes in the order. (more…)

Limited Edition Copies of the Book “Paper Money of the United States” Available in Boston

Two hundred limited-edition copies of Paper Money of the United States, 19th Edition, numbered and signed by co-authors Arthur L. Friedberg and Ira S. Friedberg, will be available for purchase at the American Numismatic Association’s World’s Fair of Money in Boston. The books are $80 (tax included) and will be available August 12-14 in the ANA Museum Showcase on the bourse floor. Proceeds will benefit the ANA Edward C. Rochette Money Museum.

These special hardcover copies are part of the release of the book’s new 19th edition, and include an attractive dust jacket with gold foil lettering. The cover features the image of an 1863 $100 Legal Tender note from the ANA Bebee Collection of U.S. Paper Money. Many other photographs of notes from the Bebee Collection are used throughout the book.

First offering will be to convention attendees on a first-come, first serve basis. A silent auction for the first three numbered copies will be held, with a minimum bid of $80 for each copy. The auction will be at the ANA Museum Showcase, and will begin Aug. 12 at 9:30 a.m. and end Aug. 14 at 3 p.m. Attendees wishing to purchase a specific-numbered copy can e-mail museum@money.org before the show to request a number for an additional $15.

Co-author Arthur L. Friedberg will be available at the Museum Showcase Aug. 12 at 2 p.m. and Aug. 13 and 14 at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. for one-hour sessions to provide personalized autographs and discuss the book. Purchases and bids can only be made by convention attendees, but those not attending may enlist an agent to make bids on their behalf.

Paper Money of the United States is the premier reference book for United States paper currency. Originally authored in 1953 by Robert Friedberg, Arthur and Ira’s father, the book illustrates, catalogs, describes and places values on all U. S. paper money from 1861 to the present. The Friedberg numbering system is the method used by numismatists to identify and describe notes.

The World’s Fair of Money, held this year at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, is the nation’s premiere money show. Show hours are 1-5:30 p.m. August 10, and 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. August 11-14. Dealer set-up is from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, August 10. Admission is $6 for adults, and free for ANA members and children 12 and under. For more information on all of the show highlights, call 719-482-9857 or visit www.worldsfairofmoney.com.

Numismatic Literature Dealers George Kolbe and David Fanning Join Forces

George Frederick Kolbe and David F. Fanning are pleased to announce that they have combined their numismatic literature firms to expand business opportunities and to better serve their joint clientele. The new entity will operate as Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers and will have an office in Gahanna, Ohio, just outside Columbus. Both Kolbe and Fanning will be actively involved in the business.

Established in 1967, George Frederick Kolbe Fine Numismatic Books is the largest and longest currently active rare numismatic literature auction firm in the world. George Kolbe has been selling important numismatic books at auction since 1976 and David F. Fanning entered the numismatic literature field in 2003. The two have conducted 115 auctions featuring well over 100,000 lots selling for many millions of dollars. Dozens of fixed price lists offering important numismatic works have also been issued over the years and that aspect of the firm’s business will be enhanced by more frequent lists, both in print and online at the Kolbe & Fanning website.

In addition to conducting regular auctions, Kolbe & Fanning are always eager to purchase important numismatic books and libraries for cash; in complete confidentiality if so desired. Over the years, the firm has packed libraries and arranged for shipments on three continents and are willing to travel anywhere in the world to do so. Written appraisals are also available as well as advice concerning the value and salability of rare numismatic works. There is no charge for this latter service.

By joining forces, Kolbe and Fanning believe they will be able to ensure that the business will continue to operate for many years, as they assist collectors, dealers, and researchers in developing their libraries and discovering new avenues for numismatic study. The firm’s first auction will be the second part of the Stack Family Library, which will close on June 3, 2010. A printed catalogue may be obtained by sending $10.00 and the catalogue is available online at no cost. Two auctions are planned for September 2010 (details to be announced soon) and a major public auction has been scheduled on January 8, 2011 in conjunction with the New York International Numismatic Convention at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Manhattan. Consignments of outstanding numismatic books, sale catalogues, periodicals, manuscripts and correspondence archives covering the numismatic spectrum are currently being accepted for the January 2011 public auction sale at NYINC.

The firm’s website can be found at www.numislit.com. Additional information for the firm and its principals will be added to the website as it becomes available over the following weeks. (more…)

The iPad and the Numismatist – First Impressions

By Tim Shuck

Unless you’ve been on a trek to a remote section of the planet you’ve likely seen the announcement of Apple’s most recent product, the iPad. Much larger than an iPod or other portable phone/ data device but slightly smaller than a typical laptop computer or netbook, the iPad is a computer tablet.

Tablets of course are not a new concept, but Apple has blended power, portability, and elegance into the design of this device. As an advocate of digital data access, I followed the pre-launch announcements and wondered if this might be a computer useful for numismatics.

So, when my son, an IT professional, told me he had preordered an iPad and asked if I wanted to go with him to the Apple Store to pick it up on the first day of sales, I readily agreed. The nearest Apple Store is a 45-minute drive from home; which was followed by a 45-minute wait in line at the mall. There were two lines actually, one for those who had reserved an iPad and the other for those who were willing to gamble that there would still be iPads in stock when their turn came at the head of the line.

Not that the wait wasn’t without it’s comforts. The good folks at Apple (or maybe I should say the clever marketing staff at Apple) provided coffee, water, scones, and muffins to those waiting in line. Most of us don’t like lines, but there was a festive sense of camaraderie among those waiting, and the crowd was as diverse as you could find – young, old, male, female, internationals, even a couple of folk in wheelchairs.

Also present was a TV crew, recording and interviewing the strange fanatics, er, I mean the technologically astute, who came out early in the morning in their pursuit of the latest in consumer technology. When my son and I reached the head of the line, we were ushered into the store by the friendly Apple staff, and just a few minutes later were on our way home with an iPad safely tucked inside the distinctive Apple backpack/ bag.

But what was it like to use an iPad? My initial reactions were two: wow, what a bright, easy-to-read, and fast screen; and it’s smaller than I expected, though surprisingly hefty. I won’t review the specs, easily obtained online at apple.com, but in general appearance it strangely reminded me of the writing slates often shown in school-house scenes of a century or more ago – about the same size and people tend to hold it the same way. Of course the iPad is a much more sophisticated design, but the juxtaposition of imagery was surprisingly strong in my mind. (more…)

Fanning Numismatic Literature Auction

David F. Fanning Numismatic Literature will hold their third mail-bid auction of numismatic literature, closing on Thursday, December 3. The auction features a wide variety of material from around the world, including works from the libraries of John J. Ford, Jr. and Douglas Ball. Some highlights of the nearly 700 lots include:

fanning_3F.C.C. Boyd Inventories of His Connecticut and New Jersey Coppers, with Additional Notes Pertaining to Continental Currency Dollars and Immune Columbia Pieces

1836 Manuscript Court Records of a Counterfeiting Case with the Bad Bill in Question Attached

Correspondence from John J. Ford and Paul Franklin

1795 Supplementary Mint Act Signed in Ink by Secretary of State Edmund Randolph, Establishing Position of Melter and Refiner, Authorizing Reduction in Weight of Cents and Half Cents, and Providing for Their Distribution

Third and Fifth Edition Red Books Inscribed by Yeoman to Contributor Hubert Polzer

John J. Ford, Jr.’s Set of Inscribed Red Books

The Very Scarce 1917 ANA Sale, Signed by Cataloguer Wayte Raymond

A Complete Set of Hardcover Ford Catalogues (Stack’s)

ANS Library Catalogue, Complete in 11 Volumes, Including the Rare Third Supplement

The First 40 Volumes of the Canadian Numismatic Journal

A Substantial Run of Spink’s Numismatic Circular

Quarto Charpentier on the Medals of Louis XIV (more…)