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Letters to the Editor: Dec. 17, 2019

Frank Church River of No Return Quarter

I found five of the Frank Church River of No Return W mint quarters on Nov. 16.

Warren Lane
Address Withheld

New Presidential Dollar

With the passing of President George H.W. Bush, shouldn’t the Mint produce a new presidential dollar to honor his service?

Greg Kipp
Windsor, Calif.

Gone in a Flash

The United States Mint held its grand sale on Nov. 14 and 30,000 reverse proof coins were gone in an instant.

I had one of these coins in my cart when their system crashed and left me a refresh screen. Once back on, I noticed coins were sold out. I thought, “no worries” since I had one showing in my account and in my cart. Well, I had plenty to worry about because red-lettered wording told me I made an invalid choice which I certainly DID NOT.I felt CHEATED.

The early “reminder” the mint sends is a laugh. I got their email at 12:37 pm,long after the coins had sold out, just salt in an open wound. Now for the best part, I called and spoke to a mint worker and she assured me all would be corrected.

I really believe that. Upon looking on eBay I see dealers with over 10 coins for sale. This is pretty good seeing the limit was one per household but then that is just for the average citizen. I guess dealers are above the public.

Jeffrey Booth
Bozrah, Conn.

Innovation Dollar

After reading your AnnounceMINT about the Innovation dollar coin in the Nov. 5, 2019 issue and seeing that the premium on 100 coins was $11.95, I ordered a bag. I plan on spending them. People like one-dollar coins. I think they hoard them, maybe accumulate is a better word. The dollar coin does not tear, it does not burn, it does not blow away in the wind, and it is sustainable.

I also enjoyed the article about donating Canadian coins to CAFNE. There are probably a lot of unwanted Canadian coins in the states that could be gathered. This is probably especially true in the northern tier of the states.

Dan Bubalo Jr.
Brainerd, Minn.

2019 Reverse Proof silver Eagle

Here we go again.

On Nov. 15, the bureaucrats at the U.S. Mint provided another opportunity for their coin dealer pals to earn money at the expense and frustration of actual collectors and Mint customers.At noon that day, they offered a reverse proof silver Eagle with a wholly unrealistic limited mintage of 30,000. All 30,000 were apparently sold out within a few minutes, which created a loss of thousands of dollars in potential seigniorage to the United States Mint.

I am a collector of U.S. proof silver Eagles and, over the past 35 years, I have collected all of them, including many that were issued with unjustified and unrealistic limited mintages for the benefit of professional coin dealers. Unfortunately, that day I had a meeting at noon and when I attempted to order the new coin at 2:00 PM it had already sold out.

I am also enrolled in the Mint’s program which automatically charges my credit card for all new issues of proof silver Eagles. It appears, however, that this particular reverse proof was not part of that enrollment program and I will have to purchase this new coin in the inflated aftermarket.

Had the Mint taken orders in advance and then produced enough coins to meet the demand, the seigniorage for each coin would inure to the benefit of the Mint and the U.S. government.For example, if the seigniorage for the $65 dollar coin were $10, then the sale of 100,000 coins would be $1 million. In the current sale of 30,000 coins, the mint would earn only $300,000, and the coin dealer resellers would earn whatever profit the artificially rarified market will bear. In my opinion, that constitutes a gross breach of ethics, government trust, and the duty of the Mint to put its regular customers first. The Mint should be required to immediately produce enough of these 2019 reverse proof silver Eagles to satisfy the demand from its own regular customers.

Don W. Crockett
Washington, D.C.

Coin Cleaning Method Raises Eyebrows 

I attended my coin club’s monthly meeting and auction this last Wednesday (Nov. 20) and purchased a collection of The Numismatist magazines from 1945. There was a very interesting reading from “Grandfather’s day.”

In the article, “Notes and Queries” on page 1 of the March 1945 issue was a note/letter from “M.H., a Rabid Numismatist” stating what he used to clean and color large copper cents. “Boil them in olive oil, wipe them clean and hold them over a gas flame for a few seconds.” (Not advisable for rare dates.)

I can hear today’s numismatists screaming “You’re not supposed to clean coins, no matter what!”But 74 years ago, I would guess it was the “norm” to have bright shiny (common) coins in one’s collection.

Would someone please pass the catsup?

Bill Tuttle
Cleveland, Ohio