The 1909 S VDB cent is probably one of the most sought after American coins in the numismatics. Think about it; nearly all collectors either got started collecting lincolns or collect lincolns seriously sometime whilst engaged in the hobby.
The problem with this is that there were only 484,000 of these coins minted. Considering the low mintage, the survival rate of this coin was probably fairly high due to the fact it was a first year issue and lincoln was quite a popular figure.
When you combine a great ever growing demand with a finite possibly shrinking supply you can deduce two things. There will be a lot of collectors that never get their 1909 S VDB and there will be a lot of collectors that purchase a fake 1909 S VDB. In a market where the price for even a specimen in good is constantly rising and quickly approaching $1000, it would be far better to be in the first column than in the second. But if you find yourself...
United States Coinage Overhaul Is Needed Now!!!
The United States Coinage needs change (no pun intended) and here's three reasons why:
Our current circulating coinage is staid, impractical, and change makes good budgetary sense.
Have you ever wondered why our coinage looks like it does? Why each coin is a specific size, shape and composition? Do you know that the latest coinage act was over 45 years ago?
When the US Mint first started coining money in 1792 the composition and weight of a coin closely approximated it's value. Coins were made of gold, silver, and copper, and ranged in denomination from Half Cent to Eagle ($10 gold piece). Over time, adjustments were made in order to keep the intrinsic value of the coins near but still below their face value.
The Coinage Act of 1965 changed everything. Our coinage would no longer be made of precious metal, but made of base metal assuring that the cost of manufacturing the coins would be less than their face...
I know we have been over this bridge a million times, but recent comments by someone here have made me think about this whole market grading vs. technical grading thing and although I have tried to explain my point of view in the past, I don't think that I have done so well enough to make the point clearly as it is in my mind.
My point of view is that there are 2 schools of thought developing in numismatics lately. I am going to focus on the technical graders, because that is the side I think I fall to.
To a collector, there is less of a difference in opinions when a coin is technically graded (either detail is there or not) than any other way. There are STILL going to be differing opinions!!! It is a matter of opinion whether or not a coin is attractive (part of the technical grade) for example, but for the most part whether detail is on the coin or not is more of (but not completely!) a black-and-white issue, and one that I personally feel some comfort with. It was how I...
Two Unfinished Masterpieces.The offset background on the front of the enlarged version of the portrait of Abraham Lincoln as depicted on the $100 dollar Gold Certificate.The portrait of Lincoln .Miscellaneous Die # 1029.was engraved by Charles Burt in 1869.The rest of the note was completed in 1908 by Edward M. Hall,G.U.Rose Jr,Robert Ponickau and Edward E. Myers.The source ofthis engraving was a photograph taken at the Matthew brady studio in 1864.
the $100 Gold Certificate Miscellaneous Die # 7046 was intended to be used for the 1908 Series.This Series was never issued.
From time to time we see references to the Sheldon 70 point grading scale when talking about the grading system that is currently being used in Numismatics today. For the benefit of those who are not familiar with what Dr. Sheldon did and why he did it, I’d like to offer a short summary.
William H. Sheldon was born in 1898. He first became interested in Early Large Cents at a young age while looking through his Fathers cigar box full of those big old coppers. By the time he was a teenager, he was pricing Early Large Cents for a local dealer and according to him, using a 70 point system. As the years went by he became quite the aficionado of Early Large Cents (those from 1793 through 1814). On three different occasions he assembled sets with the last containing all 290+ known collectable varieties at the time. To put that more into perspective, that collection contained at least 16 (sixteen) 1793 Large Cents! In 1948 he published EARLY AMERICAN CENTS detailing much of his research...
In response to a recent question by a member on another thread, I present here the science of toning. This article is adapted from an article I posted a couple years ago on the NGC chat boards. Save it, print it, reference it, use it in discussions of toning. While some simplifications have been made to make it easier to understand (BadThad – I know! ), the basic science is all here.
The science of toning is very interesting. Sometimes delving into the details of something takes away the mystery of it, but to a scientist and numismatist, it only serves to heighten the wonder of a coin. Toning on silver coins appears through something known as thin film interference of a layer of silver sulfide (Ag2S) on the surface of the coin. This silver sulfide is formed when the silver alloy reacts with hydrogen sulfide (H2S) in the atmosphere....
As I’ve mentioned in previous Houston show reports, the folks who put on the Houston Money Show work so very hard to make sure everything is done right and everyone is happy, even walking around from table to table to see if they could help or improve things. They also do a heck of a job advertising the show with both radio and television commercials. In spite of all this, I can’t say the show is a gangbuster show, but it is definitely steady and worthwhile for me to keep returning.
So as usual, the night before my flight, I organize all my paperwork and coins, both slabbed and raw. But now with my new little kitty, Penny, I get extra “help” during this process!
The other day I stopped in a local coin shop which had a weekly bid board ending then. After looking over the lots on the wall and not seeing too much that I really wanted to bid on, I looked over the large lots and expensive coins which are kept in one of the glass cases instead of being hung up on the bid board. One lot that caught my eye was the following medal, sorry the photos are so dark, was doing the best I could with a borrowed camera set up:
After deciding not to bid on any of the usual corroded Indian Cents, various overpriced junk silver and modern commemoratives that fill most of the bid board, I decided to go for this medal so that I would at...
The Roman provincial city of Marcianopolis was located in Thracia, just west of modern-day Devnya, Bulgaria.
Marcianopolis was originally the city of Parthenopolis. Trajan renamed it after his sister Ulpia Marciana, at the conclusion of the Second Dacian War, in 106 AD. The city flourished under the Severan Dynasty, but suffered from barbaric invasions in the mid-3rd Century. The Goths were repulsed by Gallienus, and the city continued to prosper through the reign of Diocletian, during which it became the hub of Moesia Inferior.
The city continued to grow in importance, and became the temporary capitol of the Empire during Valens’ conflict with the Goths (366-369). After that, its history becomes a roller-coaster ride:...
Just wanted to write a few notes on some suggestions for purchasing coins, and not being oversold, or vulnerable to scams, frauds, and misinformation. This is in NO WAY a condemnation of dealers (I have lots of dealer friends), veteran collectors who have "their way" of doing things, or investment "rollover" collectors. I just want to say a few words for the new collector, or middle-level neophyte who still has not acquired a lot of experience in purchasing coins and assuring that he/she is not over his/her head:
1. Buy from reputable dealers only. There are many of them on this forum, and lists abound here. Reputable dealers are honest, decent, nice people who deserve our patronage, to keep their businesses profitable. If someone is offering you a deal that seems shaky, or too good to be true--it is!!
2.Develop a rapport with dealers and collectors--if you are friendly with them, they will be friendly in reciprocation. Your purchasers will be worry-free.
3. To quote an...
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