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Letters to the Editor (August 14, 2018)

No trouble ordering 2018 reverse proof silver set


I just ordered one of the reverse proof sets from the U.S. Mint. I waited until they were on sale for a couple of hours to avoid the initial rush. I had no trouble at all in placing my order. So if this is going to be a sell out, it hasn’t happened yet.

Peter Glassman
Address withheld

Saved by telephone when ordering reverse proof

I had written before, and you counseled I’d do better to try to order the reverse proof set today online. I’m not great online. Just offering feedback, because I know everyone writes in with their gripes about the Mint.

I had prepared for today, setting up an online Mint account on Saturday with a new password or setting up one, who knows. They had my credit card number, too. Went through my dress rehearsal for the sale today.

There were times before noon where the Mint’s Live chat wasn’t available. All hands on deck. This may sound simplistic, but when I was able to get through on the chat before noon, a rep wrote to click the blue button to get the red button or wish list to something.

Once noon hit, I think it was all red like “order.”

I was proud of myself to get to their Step 4 and kept clicking and clicking and clicking. That wheel goes around and around to no avail.

What’s interesting is somewhere in that process I had clicked so many times, I was up to the maximum quantity of 10 when I really didn’t want (them). I was able to lower the quantity, but the dollar amount never changed. It was up to over $500. Many may think this funny, but a good thing there was a max of 10 because I would have maxxed out my credit card or worse.

I went up to the librarian reference desk, and it turns out this library has a courtesy phone. After going up and down between the floors from the computer to the phone, I finally got through to the Mint on the phone and ordered at 1 p.m.

Don’t ask me. I’m not great with computers. Process is insane. There are more important things in life than a reverse proof set!

Name withheld

Roll searching rewarded by Indian Head cent find

So true to keep checking change and rolls of coins from the bank.

I was checking rolls of pennies I got from the bank. Looking at the third roll I received from the bank, and there it was, a 1904 Indian Head penny in Fine condition. I could not believe it!

So keep checking change and rolls of coins!

Name withheld

Apostle Islands quarter shows up in change

Today (July 3) at Walgreens I received my first 2018-D Apostle Islands quarter. My other coins were a 2018-D cent, a 2017-D dime and a 2016-D Harpers Ferry quarter. All new coins.

Name withheld
Yucca Valley, Calif.

Received three new quarters at restaurants

Today (July 3) at lunch I recieved three Voyageur quarters, Philly Mint, in change. I chatted with the manager about the possibility of buying a roll from the resturaunt, but he wasn’t keen on that idea and said his change came from Brinks. Oh well, I’m happy with my three new shinies!

Happy Independence Day! Thank God for our continued Liberty and Prosperity!

Jay Woodin
Address withheld

Nice collectible 2017-P cent prompts thoughts of future

I recently bought a 2017 one-cent coin with the “P” mintmark. I thought it would be a nice collectible due to it being the first time the Philadelphia mint has stamped the “P” mintmark on a coin, and I think the U.S. government will and should stop making the one-cent (penny) coin. It makes no sense (pun intended) to keep making it. It cost the government 1.8 cents to make a one-cent coin.

Canada has already stopped making their one-cent coin because it is too expensive to make.

What are your thoughts?

Jeff Dougan
Pinole, Calif.

Would Ben Franklin appreciate it?

Our hobby has few literary items that bring a chortle let alone a guffaw when money is involved. When I was a child collector in the early 1950s, I was told the following imaginary story by a playmate’s father. It took me a few moments to “get” the non-literal meaning of coin-saving wisdom.

Find The Pecuniary Proverb

Ben, a boy of 11 or 12, was looking through old things stored in the attic by his parents and came upon a large assemblage of very tall hollowware in the form of pitchers, vases, ewers, flasks, flagons, jugs and crocks in an amazing assortment of shapes.

He went to his mother for an explanation of their source and purpose. She confided to her son that they were the product of the family curse and that the time has come to alert him of a crockery future if he did not heed her warning.

Ben was taken aback, as his mother said that those ceramic containers are transformed male members of his family who did not believe the admonition that if they ever removed their beard when they reached manhood, they would be converted into pottery, as when Odysseus’ men were turned to stone when they looked at the face of the Gorgon Medusa.

Ben was too young to understand the literary reference but feared its threat.

Not much later he did grow a beard and let it expand. He tucked it into his shirt, and then around his girth, finally down each leg of his pants until he could stand it no longer and went to his mom to be consoled.​ After all, dating was impossible. His mom reiterated the warning and again advised abstinence, to Ben’s great dismay.

Foreseeing an unconsummated future, he,​ ​in a panic, ran to the bathroom medicine cabinet, withdrew the electric razor and cleared his face and neck of hair with a sense of emancipation.

POOF, there was now standing in his place a magnificent amphora, resplendent with images of figures and achievements that would never be his.

The moral of this tale: A Benny shaved is a Benny urned.

Jack Rosenfeld
San Francisco

Salute to late California coin collector

Frank J. Strazzarino (1921-2018) recently passed away. While not among the towering greats of our hobby, Frank for over 70 years was a passionate collector, an old-school one, who along with coins ran model trains, enjoyed other collectibles, and had a dedication for the Golden Gate International Exposition, the famous Treasure Island 1939 and 1940 fair on an artificial island in the middle of San Francisco Bay.

Frank and I twice shared our GGIE passion in two presentations, first in Vallejo, Calif., at the esteemed rare book assemblage, The McCune Collection, and then during the August 2005 America Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money in San Francisco. Of course, while we battled and bantered back and forth, the attendees know, in the end, Frank would win: he as a 17-year-old attended GGIE. One of his treasured keepsakes was a black-and-white Kodak snapshot of him and his mother with the Exposition’s Tower of Sun in the background.

His devotion to organized numismatics was his long membership and service in most all positions for the august Pacific Coast Numismatic Society. RIP, Frank.

Michael S. Turrini
Vallejo, Calif.

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News. >> Subscribe today.

More Collecting Resources

• Are you a U.S. coin collector? Check out the 2019 U.S. Coin Digest for the most recent coin prices.

• Order the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, General Issues to learn about circulating paper money from 14th century China to the mid 20th century.