Author Archives: Dave Harper

Mint’s Charles E. Barber gets historical makeover

Chief Mint Engraver Charles E. Barber has been portrayed as someone of little talent and touchy ego who watched as Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Bela Lyon Pratt, and Victor David Brenner ran rings around him. An often used photograph of the chief … Continue reading

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Dollar designs given nod by CCAC

A second try for a decent pair of designs for the 2018 American Innovators dollar coin was taken Sept. 27 by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. It shows the Statue of Liberty on the obverse and various gears on the … Continue reading

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Draw visitors to coin collecting with a magnet

When I went to the Smithsonian Institution many years ago, the collection of U.S. coins was still on display. There were so many coins in so little space that it felt weird standing in a vast area not moving just … Continue reading

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Quick work needed to issue dollar in 2018

A second try for a decent pair of designs for the 2018 American Innovators dollar coin was taken Sept. 27 by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. It shows the Statue of Liberty on the obverse and various gears on the … Continue reading

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Get out of the way of silver Eagle buyers

Professionals have begun to forecast that prices are bottoming for gold and silver. That is a dangerous game to play. Nobody has an exemplary record of making this kind of market call. However, one thing I can add to the … Continue reading

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Bidders chase gold at Kagin’s Auction

It did not bring the highest price realized in Kagin’s million dollar auction Sept. 21, but an Emperor Norton I 50-cent bond sold for $12,600. The piece of paper issued by a San Francisco eccentric who proclaimed himself emperor of … Continue reading

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Ignore crisis, sleep well with coins

They say hindsight is 20/20. Is it? We passed the 10th anniversary date of the bankruptcy of the Wall Street firm of Lehman Brothers on Sept. 15, 2008. The Great Recession commenced then. Unemployment soon soared to over 10 percent. … Continue reading

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100-point scale deserves discussion

We struck pay dirt in terms of numbers of readers responding to the question of whether numismatics should change to a 100-point grading scale. “Best of Buzz” is where responses usually go. There are many appearing in the two-page section … Continue reading

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Mint Statistics: Steady buyers push up sales totals

Who are the steady buyers of clad 2018 proof sets? This week’s sales of 7,208 is a similar number to last week. The running total for the year is 355,245. In 10 year’s time, will they complain that the price … Continue reading

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Amazing half disme nears $2 million

If they gave awards for the best individual coin sale of the autumn collecting season, Brian Hendelson, president of Classic Coin Company of Bridgewater, N.J., would be the first nominee. He has just accomplished a $1,985,000 private treaty sale of … Continue reading

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