It's renewal time again with NGC.
Another year of ?numismania? has quickly slipped by with only slight ?branching out? from my main interest (Morgan dollars). Upgrades to my Morgan set have grown into large investments, thereby making changes few and far between. The looseleaf binder shown in my February ?07 journal entry has had only 11 pages replaced with upgraded coins. I?m still constantly checking Ebay, Teletrade, Heritage, and elsewhere for the few ?affordable? upgrades I can still hope to obtain, but these coins do not crop up too often. When they do, they usually command a premium over Numismedia values. I can be patient. They will eventually come along.
The slight ?branching out? is the diversion created by beginning an 1894 Mint set. My Morgans gave me the start and the search for the rest of the set forces me to look at coins other than silver dollars.
Like most coin collectors, I also pick up annual sets from the U.S. Mint, although the government seems to produce an ever increasing variety every year. Even though all coins were at one time modern, I just can?t become enamored with moderns.
Some of these mint issues get stashed away and some go as gifts to the young people in whom I?ve tried to plant the seeds of numismatics. I?m happy to note that some of those seeds have taken root.
These past 2 years of building ?Poor Man?s Insanity? have been a learning experience. I?ve taught myself to rein in my zealousness when in pursuit of that ?special? coin. I no longer (or
at least very rarely) allow my desire to overcome common sense or my wallet during the final moments of an auction. Many Morgan dollars actually have a lower ?book? than they did a year ago and updated research is necessary before any purchase.
Two years ago, when this quest became serious, NGC had about 350 registered sets of Morgans. That number is now over 900, truly a testament to the enjoyment NGC?s members find in these heavy silver discs.
The attached picture is one of my favorite Morgans. One of 15 in this set that is graded below MS60, this 1893 Carson City coin is graded by NGC as XF 40 and has the look I love, dark, slightly worn. This coin paid its dues as a circulating part of our economy over a century ago. I can ?feel? the history each time I hold it. Perhaps my viewpoint would be different had I the funds to fill this slot with an MS64. ;-)
Good luck and successful collecting.