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A Flurry of Collecting activity

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coinsbygary

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It has only been two short months since I returned from a short-term mission trip to Thailand. However, in that time I have been as busy as ever adding coins to my collection, and more specifically my 7070 type set.

The highlight of my work year is the payout of my annual bonus the last payday in February. With my bonus I usually buy at least one high ticket coin for my collection. Of course my wife had other ideas on how to spend the money and consequently we will be getting a new couch.

With some of the bonus money I bought an NGC MS-64+, 1857 obverse stars Seated Liberty Dime. This dime is well struck with full star lines. It has natural russet toning with patches of darker toning on the reverse. On the obverse there are areas of fine die-polish lines showing through as light golden toning to the left of the rock and around Lady Libertys head. Rounding out my description is either struck through grease or raised pocks from die corrosion on Lady Libertys left forearm.

The next coin I bought on which I remarked in a previous post is a PCGS MS-63, 1855 CAC approved, slanted 55 Braided Hair Half-Cent. This coin has burgundy toning with a purple-blue hue on the reverse. The coin is well struck with nice eye appeal and few distracting marks.

Next on my list is an extremely well struck large-cent that I will never tire of looking at it. That coin is an NGC MS-63, 1838 modified Matron Head Large-Cent. This coin has lovely chocolate-brown toning with patches of luster showing through the toning on both the obverse and reverse. A splash of darker toning on Lady Libertys cheek rounds out this very beautiful coin.

Looking to spend my E-Bay bucks on an inexpensive coin for my Inspirational Ladies custom set, I bought an NGC MS-66, 1959 so-called 50-cent Heraldic Art Medal commemorating the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway. The two allegorical female images clasping hands across the seaway represent the friendship that exists between Canada and the United States. Soon I will be writing a more in-depth post on this piece.

Last Friday, my wife and I had the opportunity to attend the Central States Numismatic Society show. The highlight of the show wasn't so much the beautiful olive-toned PCGS MS-63, 1851 N-2 Braided Hair Large-Cent I picked up, but the fellowship we enjoyed at the show.

If you ever get a chance to visit a major coin show, by all means stop by the ANA's booth. There you will most likely find John and Nancy Wilson manning the booth. John and Nancy are a few of the most delightful and interesting people you will ever meet. Whenever my wife and I are at a show, we always make it a point to stop by and visit them. Life-long leaders in the numismatic community and married for more than 40 years, they are both still serving the numismatic community into their retirement years. In my estimation, the ANA could not have chosen two better ambassadors to represent them. Congratulations Nancy on your best of show exhibit of Santa Clause Obsolete Notes! Your award is well deserved!

While we were talking with John and Nancy another person interjected himself into the conversation. This person looked awfully familiar to me but I just could not place the face. Finally, he was introduced to us as Walter Ostromecki, the president of the ANA, and all sorts of lightbulbs lit up! We spent a few minutes talking with Walter about the ANA in general, and more specifically about the ANAs new website. The conversation was light and good humored. At the suggestion of John and Nancy, Walter signed his editorial page in a recent edition of The Numismatist for us.

Later in the day we caught up with Dave (Collectors Society user yankeejose). Dave and I spent a few enjoyable hours talking coins while my wife who was very gracious, got bored. At any rate my wife and I enjoyed looking through the displays.

One display that stood out to us featured a Hmong necklace that was used as currency up until the 1980s. It seems the Hmong people traded silver by weight for goods and services. We both identified with this display since our sister church is Hmong. Furthermore, I visited a Hmong district when I traveled to Thailand. That display proved very interesting and it got our peoples choice votes! I talked to one of the judges about doing a display myself one day. Since some my virtual displays have been rewarded, it might be nice to get an award for a regular display.

Trying to find the coins on my want list was more problematic though. Finding an affordable high-grade no-motto Seated Liberty Quarter (1856-1861) was apparently impossible. Same thing for a Braided Hair Large-Cent except for a smaller dealer who had several candidates. It was hard to choose, but I finally settled on the 1851 I made reference to earlier.

That coin has dark, olive colored toning on the obverse. Libertys neck also seemed a little course and the dealer explained that this was likely due to struck-through grease. When I got home I discovered that this is very common for large cents of this date. The reverse has lighter colored olive toning with a substantial amount of red coming through. Both the obverse and reverse have nice luster underneath the toning.

In summary, I will have to slow down a bit (yeah, I said that before) but the last two months have been a lot of fun with the CSNS show just the icing on the cake!

Gary

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