Coins October 2019

Since its inception, in 1955, Coins magazine has been a hobby leader in providing collectors with important and timely information key to making wise decisions on what to collect and how to collect. With monthly contributions from leading hobby experts, it's your one-stop hobby source. Get market trends, buying techniques, and historical perspectives on all aspects of coins (numismatics). Each issue delivers in-depth analysis, up-to-the-minute valuations, answers to all of your coin questions and more!

United States
Active Interest Media
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12 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
worth the wait

I recently began a Quarter Type Set collection. I just purchased an 1834 Capped Bust on eBay that would grade around VG8 or 10. I could see in the photos that it was an O over F variety even though it was not described as such in the listing. While these are not uncommon, closer examination after receiving the coin proved it to be the rarer of the two known types. I verified this by using the Cherrypicker’s Guide published by Whitman (Fifth Edition, Volume II). While not clearly visible in the photo, it has less prominent features of the earlier ‘A’ in America. Other tell-tale signs are the filled upper portion of A and no period after 25C. Quoting from the book, “This is a rare variety, especially if very…

5 min.
review of the collector’s handbook 10th edition

Have you given any thought to what will happen to your coin collection when you’re no longer around? Are any of your children interested in coins? Your spouse? Other relatives? And how much is your collection worth? Should it be sold to a friendly dealer you have done business with? Sold at auction? Is there a guide that might help you answer these questions? If you have a valuable coin collection, then it would be worth your while to procure a copy of The Collector’s Handbook: Tax Planning, Strategy and Estate Advice for Collectors and Their Heirs. Penned by James L. Halperin, Gregory J. Rohan, and Mark J. Prendergast, The Collector’s Handbook was published by Ivy Press, Inc., in Dallas, Texas. You can find it for sale on Amazon and eBay. Although the…

11 min.
20th century type set

FOR MOST collectors, collecting by design type is preferable to assembling sets of all date and mintmark combinations. Consider Barber quarters; the series has three big keys or stoppers: 1896-S, 1901-S, and 1913-S. The least expensive is the 1896-S, which lists for $550 in G4 in this magazine’s pricing guide “Market Watch,” MW). If you’re collecting Barber quarters by type, however, you’ll see that a common date coin such as the 1916-D lists for only $325 in MS63. Of course, it’s much less than that in lower, but still decent, grades. Here, I’m going to discuss a different approach to the 20th century type set, one requiring both the first year of the type and also the last year. I will focus on design types that began and ended in the 20th…

10 min.
ana summer seminar

Through the years I’ve put in a fair number of cameo appearances at the ANA’s annual Summer Seminar sessions in Colorado Springs, which in 2018 celebrated its 50 th renewal. This first year of its second half-century was no exception. For the first time since 2011, when I was closing out the second year of my two-year term as ANA president, I determined an opportune occasion was presenting itself. The ANA Summer Seminar presents our hobby community with a great educational, networking and mixing opportunity. Originated in 1969 by Ed Rochette, then editor of The Numismatist, and Adna Wilde, then executive director, both of whom are no longer with us, that first installment featured one class and two field trips. It hosted just 16 students but was decreed a “huge success”…

8 min.
big silver type sets

COLLECTING ONE or more series within United States coinage can be a great deal of fun, as we dive into all the details of a particular series. If there is a frustration to such an endeavor, it is probably any key dates or mint marks. A rare coin is always going to be precisely that – rare – and thus will be the stumbling block to completing a set. One way around that is to focus on collecting type sets, composed of one prime example of a coin from several similar series. Let’s take a look at assembling two truly handsome type sets, those of the bigger United States silver issues. First, The Half Dollars Our fifty-cent coin has hardly been a work horse coin, at least not for the past fifty…

12 min.
the new orleans mint

IN SEPTEMBER 2005 Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans with enormous force, damaging a great part of the city. The levees broke under the onslaught and water poured in at an alarming rate, forced by the strong winds that accompanied the storm. The fabled mint in that city suffered considerable damage, in particular to the roof, and it was some time before it could again be open to the public for tours. In terms of years, the New Orleans Mint existed from 1835 through 1909, but this is far from telling the complete story. The beginning was mired in pork-barrel politics while the middle years proved to be a case of high drama when the Civil War erupted in 1861. Our story begins in the late winter of 1834–1835 when Congress was arguing…