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Different kind of gold

After two days at the Central States Numismatic Society convention, I have hardly heard mention of that four-letter word: gold.

How unlike it was just three short years ago, when precious metals were the name of the game.

This show is a true collector event in every sense of the word, perhaps because it is the 75th anniversary convention. No organization or show can survive for such a long time without taking the interests of the long-term collector to heart.

Yesterday table holders were given free copies of a special edition of the Red Book created especially for this anniversary event. This is the kind of gesture that participants will remember long after they have forgotten the other details of this show.

From my first entry on the bourse floor I was a little concerned about attendance, but it just seems like those of us who are present have been on the quiet and methodical side. Deals are getting done without the noise.

The first dealer I talked to said that he had already made his show and everything else would be gravy. That's quite a statement in the opening hours.

But winning the prize for enthusiasm was Mike Schiller of Allouez Rare Coin Gallery.

When I talked to him late yesterday afternoon he said, "I am tickled to death. Great retail. Great wholesale. I can hardly get away from the table."

That means a lot because many shows are either one or the other, but usually not good for both wholesale and retail unless underlying market conditions are in the sweet spot dealers like to see.

"It seemed like whatever we had, someone wanted," Schiller continued. He mentioned one collector who had a want list of three coins and Schiller was able to provide all three, which the collector happily bought.

"They put a good crowd through here today," Schiller said of the show organizers. That is high praise.

What was selling?

Schiller said, $40, $50, $200 coins were moving all day long. He later raised his upper end to $300.

His table featured slabbed coins of the popular collector coins ranging from Walking Liberty half dollar to Morgan silver dollars.

The Heritage auction session last night was well attended.

If you are within driving range of the Central States event in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg, come on in. But don't ask for a copy of Numismatic News. I have already given away the entire supply.