0
  • entries
    58
  • comments
    78
  • views
    5,031

About this journal

My rekindled interest in collecting started in 2009 with the impulse purchase of a 1783 shipwreck coin.  I did not imagine that collectible grade 8 reales coins were available until I started browsing Ebay to see whether I got a good deal on my first one.  After I realized what a poor deal I made, I set out to build a collection of quality 8 reales of the 1772-1791 design featuring the bust of Charles III.  I've added a modest collection of columnarios, too.

In 2013, I started a themed collection of coins depicting the sport of fencing, my other hobby/activity.

My current focus is on a collection of world silver crowns of the 16th to 18th centuries.  So far I have examples from the Commonwealth and England, France, Holy Roman Empire states and free cities, Swiss cantons, Dutch provinces, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Russia, Ragusa, Italian states, the Ottoman Empire, Malta, Bohemia, Poland, Hungary, Transylvania, the United States of America and, of course, Spain and Spanish colonies.

Entries in this journal

Like a Box of Chocolates

To paraphrase Forest Gump, coin collecting is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna find.  I find this especially true of the Heritage weekly world coin auctions.  Sorting out all of the consignments that Heritage gets into their various auction formats must take quite a bit of time and when it comes to world coins, I doubt if all the people involved are experts in all coins across all of coin minting history.  Still, I am surprised to find the occasional scarce variety pop

jgenn

jgenn in 1684 ducato of Naples

A Hard Year, A Great Year

No, I'm not talking about this year which I can only call another strange year, but rather, the year 1860.  In trying to broaden my Silver Dollars of '60 custom set, I researched the silver dollar-like coins issued from European nations in 1860 and I believe there are only two.  By this time, thalers had shrunk to 33mm and 18.52g so they no longer fit my definition of silver dollar size!  Having already acquired a nice 20 reales of Spain (38mm, 26.291g), I was stuck with finding the 5 lire of th

jgenn

jgenn in 1860 5 Lire

Vietnam Dragon Dollar -- Cast or Milled?

By the end of the 19th Century, so many countries had issued silver world crowns that I generally need to focus on selecting just one example per country for my custom set, that I have playfully named "My World Crown Affair".  Chief among my criteria is that the coin was minted in the country.  If not locally minted, then a design element should be strongly representative of the country.  Quite a few examples of coins issued for colonies lack any flavor of the local culture and thus fail to inte

jgenn

jgenn in Vietnam 7 Tien

Anno 1790

Back before streaming became so popular, one of my local cable channels would broadcast a great selection of international television content in the original language with English subtitles.  My favorites were the detective shows such as Inspector Montalbano, Commissario Brunetti, Blood of the Vine (aka the Wine Detective), Beck and Wallander, all set in contemporary time, and the period shows Nicolas Le Floch and Anno 1790.  I highly recommend all of these, which can be streamed from various se

jgenn

jgenn in Sweden Riksdaler

Mansfeld Thaler Redux

It's been some time since I last posted to my journal.  I have lots of new coins to share but I will start with one that is connected to two of my older posts.  Since I have been fortunate to maintain my income close to that at the beginning of the pandemic, I have taken advantage of the surge in interesting coins appearing at auction this year.  I won't speculate as to why the numismatic areas that I follow have experienced a bountiful supply, as there are many likely reasons, but I have answer

jgenn

jgenn in Mansfeld

Toot, Toot -- I really don't like to blow my own horn

First off, congratulations to all the registry participants and the winners of the 2019 registry awards.  As for me, I won a Classic Set award for my Mexico City 8 reales Pillar Dollars of Charles III (1760-1771).  This is my third major award and I had never posted about them in the past, but for this one I will make an exception.  I want to highlight the wonderfully broad approach that the NGC judges have chosen in selecting sets for their awards.  I haven't yet browsed through all of the othe

jgenn

jgenn

Philip II, King of England

This coin caught my attention, when it came up for auction recently, and I checked on the type in CoinFacts wiki and read that the obverse legend for this daalder included Philip's title as King of England.   With a little more research, I can say that the July 25th, 1554 marriage of Queen Mary of England to King Philip of Spain brought about a short period where Philip gained the title of King of England and Ireland and was deemed co-ruler by an Act of Parliament.  The terms of the marriag

jgenn

jgenn

Missing Newman Envelope from Part XI Auction

Last November, I noticed that the latest round of deaccessions from the Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society, billed as the Eric P. Newman Collection Part XI US Coins Signature Auction, also had a few world coins mixed in.  I won this nice upgrade for the 1733 klippe 8 reales that I mentioned in a previous journal entry.  But, I was also curious because of the lot description that included: "A scarce-to-rare example of the Philip V 8 reales pistareen with cut sides, struck on a screw

jgenn

jgenn

Mansfeld Mystery Solved

This a follow up on my earlier post about a 1560 Mansfeld thaler that I bought last Spring and then immediately received buy offers through the Heritage auction site.  I wondered what might be so special about this coin and made some posts on this and other forums to see if I could find out.  Finally, I got a PM through this site from a person who found my earlier post and provided some information about the attribution for this coin.  As I had speculated, there is nothing particularly special a

jgenn

jgenn

(Mint) Life during Wartime -- Part II

I have posted about emergency issues but what kind of calamity could compare to your city besieged?  Siege money are the ultimate emergency issues -- defending soldiers required pay and internal commerce needed to be maintained.  Many examples come from the period of the Eighty Years War, also known as the Dutch War of Independence that occurred from 1568–1648 or from the English Civil Wars in 1642-1651.    When regular coinage became scarce jewelry, silverware and religious vessel

jgenn

jgenn

(Mint) Life during Wartime -- Part I

What intrigues me the most about the coins in my collection is their place in history and the circumstances of their issue.  I enjoy doing the research -- light research, that is, using online resources -- and I'm often surprised by the details that I uncover.  Consider one of the most beautiful South American coins, the "sun face" issues of the Provincias Unidas del Río de la Plata, that we now associate with Argentina.  If not for the shifting fortunes of war during the struggle for independen

jgenn

jgenn

Collecting my older journals

Journals from 2016 When was this coin minted? Transitions within Transitions Top Executive Accepts Kickback Custom Set Collage When the Colony becomes the Ruler A Sky Blue '60 Reflection on a Collection Nephew's First Coin Lights-Camera-Action The Silver Dollars of '60 Second Chances Custom Sets Question Journals from 2015 A Tale of Two Cities England without a monarch! A rose by any other name... My Three Suns

jgenn

jgenn

A Curious 1804 Bank of England Dollar

In February of 1797, ongoing war and the threat of invasion from the French Republic triggered a run on the Bank of England.  To meet the demand for silver coinage, in March, the Bank was authorized to release foreign currency from its silver reserves, almost entirely Spanish 8 reales.  These emergency issues were countermarked at the Royal Mint with a small oval stamp with the bust of King George III -- a stamp that had been in use for hallmarking silver plate.  One of my earliest journal posts

jgenn

jgenn

1560 Mansfeld thaler, What's so Special?

I won this thaler recently and immediately received a "buy from owner" offer through Heritage for a decent increase over my winning bid. This one is destined for my Silver Dollars of '60 set so I didn't respond to the offer but I did post a trade offer in several forums that I frequent, hoping to catch the eye of the individual that really wants this coin. I haven't received a response from the trade offers but I did get a second, higher offer through Heritage after the first one expired. S

jgenn

jgenn

My Silver Riders are Galloping Away

2017 was a tipping point for me.   After many years of relentless collecting, I slowed down to the point where I only purchased four coins, and actually sold four coins.  Three of those that I let go were Silver Riders -- ducatons of the Dutch Republic. You will find these beauties cataloged under the coins of the Netherlands, or more properly The Kingdom of the Netherlands as the modern nation is a constitutional monarchy.  Back in the 16th century, seven of the Low Country provinces threw off

jgenn

jgenn

2016 Journal Award Icon

I don't know why it took an entire year to finally create the 2016 journal award icon, that now only appears on your profile page, but lo and behold it finally showed up to replace the broken link icon that I have gotten used to staring at.

jgenn

jgenn

What is a Coin of Hawaii?

And why does Heritage Auctions put them in their own category? Before they became a US territory in 1900, the islands of Hawaii had been unified into a kingdom that existed for nearly a century. The Kingdom of Hawaii issued their own coinage, cents in 1847 and a series of silver coins in 1883. The cents were struck by a private firm in Massachusetts and the silver dimes, quarters, halves and dollars were designed by Charles Barber and were produced at the San Francisco Mint. These issues are

jgenn

jgenn

What is a Coin of Hawaii?

And why does Heritage Auctions put them in their own category? Before they became a US territory in 1900, the islands of Hawaii had been unified into a kingdom that existed for nearly a century. The Kingdom of Hawaii issued their own coinage, cents in 1847 and a series of silver coins in 1883. The cents were struck by a private firm in Massachusetts and the silver dimes, quarters, halves and dollars were designed by Charles Barber and were produced at the San Francisco Mint. These issues ar

jgenn

jgenn

When was this coin minted?

Yes, it is a trick question. My question is about an 1808 dated 8 reales with the bust of Fernando VII and the mint mark of Potosí from the Spanish Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata (modern day Bolivia). The answer lies in the tumultuous history of the period. Here's an illuminating discussion from a recent Heritage Auction catalog description: This apparently anachronistic issue was due to the Royal Ordinance of April 10, 1808 which was sent to the mints of the Americas before Ferdinand V

jgenn

jgenn

Transitions within Transitions

The Mexico City "klippe" issues of 1732-1734 With the royal decree of 18 September 1728, Philip V initiated a radical change in the production of silver coins in Spain's colonies. By 1732, the Mexico City mint would issue the Americas' first milled coins that would become the world's preeminent trade dollar for the next century. Such a change from the earlier hammered "cobs" did not come with out some difficulties in reaching normal quotas. The new processes instituted machinery for rolli

jgenn

jgenn

Top Executive Accepts Kickback

Establishes private mint on behalf of family Sorry to tease with a headline that could have come from current affairs but there's nothing new about powerful, greedy people finding ways to enrich themselves. In this case, I'm calling out Philip II of Spain, who in 1580, negotiated such a sweetheart deal with his cousin, Ferdinand II, Archduke of Austria, that he was presented with two coin rolling mills, constructed at the Hall mint, as a present. Today, we would deem such a considerable pers

jgenn

jgenn

Custom Set Collage

Celebrating an Amazing 8s milestone This year I was able to add two coins to my set of Charles III 8 reales and complete the goal of an example from each mint that produced the portrait type issue. I figured out how to add an image to the custom set description and called on some dormant skills to illustrate the achievement. I left the commercial art field just as computer graphics were starting to take off so I remember 'copy' as what the photo department did, 'cut' requiring X-ACTO knife ski

jgenn

jgenn

When the Colony becomes the Ruler

My vicarious trip to Brazil In 1807, Napoleon forced the Portuguese court into exile. Relocating to Rio de Janeiro, Portugal became the colony -- its kingdom ruled from Brazil. This transfer of power was formalized in 1815 when the Reino Unido de Portugal, Brasil e Algarves was established and Rio de Janeiro became its capital. This is the only example of a European nation ruled from one of its colonies. The Portuguese court returned to Lisbon in 1821 with Brazil gaining its independence t

jgenn

jgenn

A Sky Blue '60

It took a bit of magic to capture this image. When viewing a toned silver coin from a certain, special angle you can really appreciate the color, but it can be nearly impossible to capture in a photograph. Somehow, I positioned an OttLite, just right, to maximize the color on this one. Try as I might, I just can't replicate it and now that the coin is encapsulated, there's little hope of success. Of all the coins of Spain that I've collected, this is my one late empire example, purchased for

jgenn

jgenn

Reflection on a Collection

I was inspired to look at my collection in a different light. When I contemplate my collection, I generally think about dates, types, grades and values; and I visualize linked pairs of obverse and reverse sides. I enjoy learning about the history and personalities associated with the times, places and persons represented by the coins. so they are part of my reflection as well. However, when I saw the photo montage that one of the collectors ATS put together, of the best face of several of hi

jgenn

jgenn

0