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Letters to the Editor: Feb. 9, 2021

Change Machine Coins Should Have Been Turned In

I hate to tell you this, Jim [Tigner, Jan. 19 NN letter-writer], but the coins that you “found” in the Coinstar machine at Walmart do not belong to you.

The cool thing to do would have been to turn them in to the manager of the store. A few years ago my 10-year-old daughter found a billfold while we were grocery shopping. She turned it in to the store manager and later found it belonged to an old vet. The vet gave my daughter a $5 bill as a reward. She tried to say no, but the vet would have it no other way. My daughter took the money right over to a cashier and told her to apply the $5 to the vet’s bill. I’m very proud of my daughter. But the point I was trying to make is that the coins did not belong to you!

Name and address withheld

American Liberty Gold a Mistake for COTY Contender

The American Liberty high relief $100 coin is vying for the title of Best Gold Coin in the 2021 Coin of the Year awards. A rendering of the obverse of that coin was shown in the Jan. 5 issue of Numismatic News.

A description of that coin would be accurate if described thusly: Miss Liberty has a joyless, blank stare and appears to be gazing into the exhaust of a jet engine at take-off (note her hair straight back under the influence of some unknown, yet terrific, force). Then note the rays emanating, not from a coronet or crown, but from midway back on her head, leaving the observer to think the rays are emanating from somewhere inside the skull. Those flaws aren’t enough for a full description, however. Next consider the limiting lack of sculptive detail everywhere it is needed, giving a cheap and bland look to the coin, overall. The obvious lack of artistic perspective, consideration and thought says this design should not have ever been approved, let alone nominated for Best Gold Coin. This coin’s design does not inspire even the basics in artistic appreciation by the viewer. How did this one get by the Citizen’s Coinage Advisory Committee?

George Kissinger
Spooner, Wis.

Women’s Voices Lacking in Numismatics

I just finished reading the Sept. 15 edition of Numismatic News, including an article about how we are trying to get young collectors involved in numismatics.

Did you know that I could not find one article written by a woman, including Letters to the Editor, in the whole edition?

Perhaps we should try to get women involved in numismatics also.

Parkland, Fla.

Julian Feature Conjures Flying Eagle Cent Memories

I greatly enjoyed the article by R.W. Julian in the Sept. 15 edition of NN about the development and implementation of the Flying Eagle cent. That cent has always been a fascination with me. As a kid starting out in coin collecting, there were no coin dealers within 40 miles of my small hometown. How was a rural 12-year-old kid to find a Flying Eagle cent in 1962? I tried; they just weren’t around. An occasional Indian Head cent turned up, but not a Flying Eagle. Additionally, I did not even know but one adult who collected coins (dimes only).

Well I do recall gazing at the images of the Flying Eagle in the old “Red Book” of the day. There was just something intriguing about the simplicity of the coin that struck a chord with me. I finally found one elderly and retired rural mail carrier in town who had a small stockpile of odd coins he had accumulated in selling stamps out on his route. He had a Flying Eagle cent! It was in EF condition … but miserably damaged. Someone had struck it with a hammer on one edge, completely disfiguring the coin. The owner would not sell it, but I got to hold it and admire it in hand.

Like many of us, I left coin collecting for three decades, only to come back into it as an adult. The first thing I had to have was a Flying Eagle cent. I had an insatiable appetite for the coin and commenced to own dozens of them in varying degrees of preservation. I think it is still my favorite coin, though I no longer feel the urge to “corner the market” in them like I once did.

David Smith
Address withheld