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Looking for finds in all the wrong places?

Yesterday I wrote about finding 13 cents on the pavement in a parking lot.

An old hobby friend wrote a response in an email to me that has me convinced that I do not move around in the right places.

He wrote:

“I cannot remember when I did not look for coins and paper money, and just a couple of years ago, I finished off finding every coin and paper money denomination in circulation.

“Every coin denomination was fairly easy to find but paper money was more difficult, and I have found only one each of the highest two denominations of paper money.

“It was about 10 years ago when my wife and I were walking into a side entrance of Tysons Corner Mall in McLean, Va. I am always looking around to see what and who is around me and also looking down on the ground.

“It was a cold and wet winter day and there was a pile of leaves pushed off to the side and out of the way of the entrance.

“ As I looked at the pile I saw the green of paper money! As my wife rushed through the door, I stopped and picked it up. It was $50! A nice find!

“A couple of years ago after a FUN Show in Orlando, Fla., I went out of the hotel early to stow some of our stuff in my vehicle.

“As I turned around, a car raced past me and blew some pieces of paper into the air.

“I gave a dirty look at the car then looked at the paper and saw one had the green of paper money!

“I watched it as it landed a couple of feet from me and it was a $100. A great find!

“This last piece completed my finding all coin and paper money denominations, but I am still picking up money.

“It has definitely been hundreds of dollars that I have found in my lifetime.”

After I received this email, I searched my memory for any paper money finds I might have made in my life.

Basically, I don’t remember any.

When I was a kid a half century ago, my brother, a friend and I were walking along the fence line of the municipal pool.

My friend found $3 crumpled up in the grass.

He took it to his father.

The father put out the word at the pool that if anyone reported losing money, they would get the it back if they specified the amount correctly.

No one stepped forward to claim this loss of cash.

So the three of us each got $1.

This was as much a life lesson as a find.

I appreciated the buck.

It was a lot of money at the time for a kid.

Try as I might, I do not recall ever finding a $5, $10, $20, $50 or $100 bill.

How about you?

Buzz blogger Dave Harper has twice won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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One Response to Looking for finds in all the wrong places?

  1. daactaa7 says:

    Hi Dave, great article. I want to share on this one, and your other one on the same subject. . I am 57 years old. I have scoured the pavement since I was maybe, 7 years old for coins and money. I will always pick up a penny. I spotted a piece of currency in the road once while driving. It was in a residential area, so I urked it over and got out of my car to find a crisp $50 bill, textured to the asphalt. A bank was in close proximity, so I figured a patron of the bank didn’t have as tight of a hold on their money as they thought. I also try to look into the cash registers till when ever I can. Most places use merchandise to obstruct ones view and access, but I have seen silver quarters, dimes, and halves in tills and always ask for them. I usually get them, only once a cashier refused. Once I got 3 silver proof kennedys, although very scruffy, that was a great find. My greatest “till” find was a seated liberty half!
    I was so excited I could barely contain myself while directing the cashier. No, that one, no, no, no, yes that one. When I got it home, and upon closer examination, I realize it was counterfeit. Although made of silver, it must have had the word COPY printed on liberty’s shield. The word copy had been ground down and the stripes of the flag had been engraved in to try to blend the alteration in. I was disappointed, but still thrilled with the whole scenario. I still have the coin. Also, a couple times a year, I get a silver dime in change, and both my wife and I can hear it as the change is dropped into my hand. We look at each other with that “cha-ching” look, it’s great fun. One more story. I have a friend who owns a vending machine business. He was collecting money from his route once when he noticed a whole bunch of silver dimes from a snack machine. He was parked in back of the store by the dumpster. He doesn’t know why, but on his way out, he looked in the dumpster and saw a Whitman coin album…dimes, go figure. He put all the silver dimes back in the album and low and behold, it was a complete set! Some kid obviously had stolen his daddy’s dime book and spent the whole lot on this snack machine. Well thanks for listening to me, and remember, coins are where you find them!

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