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Nov. 24 Letters to the Editor

Online Ordering Not Possible for All

In regard to Mr. Daniel’s frustration with being unable to order from the U.S. Mint via the phone, I can sympathize with his dilemma and not wanting a computer. I manage a private fraternal club and many of our members are elderly and do not have, nor desire to have a computer. Even some of the younger members choose not to own computers. It can be very frustrating for them, as our parent organization is moving more and more toward computer-based operations, even for paying their annual dues.

Unfortunately, it is the way of the era, and it is only going to get worse for non-computer owners. However, most communities have computer sites open to the public, either individual facilities or at the local library, and will have computer-savvy assistants there to help. The internet is becoming the “norm” for business transactions, partially because of its security. Ordering and paying online is trackable, and there is no chance of your check being stolen or your order form getting lost in the mail.

I have been ordering mint sets and other products from the U.S. Mint since the late 1970s, just like Mr. Daniel. First I ordered via U.S. Mail, then phone, and for the past 10 years or so, online. Their website is very user-friendly and easy to use. Once you create a username and password (be sure to save it and keep it in a safe place so you don’t forget it), you just log in and search for what you want. They also have a calendar of upcoming releases that is really useful.

Ordering is quick and easy, and you don’t have to wait on the phone for long periods of time waiting for an associate to answer. I have received all my items within 10-14 days of placing the order. You can even ask for reminders of upcoming items you are interested in. You will be notified the minute they are available so that you don’t miss out or not get your order in before they are sold out. The notices can be sent to your cellphone, which almost everyone has these days.

Things may or may not return to the “old normal” after COVID, and who knows how long this will last. I hope Mr. Daniel doesn’t miss out on any other items he wants.

Daryl Conley
Truth or Consequences, N.M.

The U.S. Mint is at it Again

Does the Mint have any credibility left whatsoever? While we all understand that COVID has wreaked havoc with most all businesses in our country, and this is no less true with the U.S. Mint, how is it they can come up with hoards of silver Eagles, “Emergency” issues of silver eagles, announce new designs for the same, and claim that 2020 is the last year for the Mercanti reverse design for the same?

Some of the silver Eagles will have the privy mark and some won’t. And now they claim some silver Eagles will feature the Mercanti reverse design in 2021? It seems as though the Mint has done all of this with subterfuge, legerdemain, sleight of hand, and smoking mirrors, in order to simply bolster the sales of silver Eagles.

Most collectors would, of course, buy the first release of a new coin; and it follows they would do the same for the very last Issue, as the Mint advertised it to be.

Hyped by the Mint and dealers alike, they created a bogus scenario in order to sell more of the silver Eagles, while knowing full well it simply wasn’t true that it was to be the “last year of the Mercanti reverse design.” Really? Did they think we wouldn’t recall the last time they did this to us?; that being the now infamous 2019 Enhanced Reverse proof silver Eagle fiasco.

My suggestion is that the Mint get into the used-car sales business; after all, they’re about as credible. Or, how about selling shoes?

Steve McGowan
Algonac, Mich.

How Does Solution Application Affect Value?

My dad got me started collecting coins over 60 years ago. When one of us would get a Buffalo nickel, the date would sometimes be illegible. My dad had some kind of an acid that he put on it to raise the numbers. Therefore, several of my Buffalo nickels have been altered by doing this. My question is, do they still have some value or has the value been decreased significantly?

Nan Gregory
Address withheld

Editor’s Note: In most cases, altering a coin’s appearance, whether it be cleaning a coin or raising numbers, can decrease a coin’s value significantly. The best way to find out their value is to go to a reputable local coin dealer for an appraisal.

Author Surprise

I recently purchased another one of John Wexler and Kevin Flynn’s books, The Authoritative Reference on Mercury Dimes, and to my surprise, the seller was Kevin Flynn! He signed my book and best of all, when the book arrived it said, “happy hunting!”

Natalie Wall
Connecticut

Cutting Back on Orders Could Send Message

On hearing of the Mint price increases, I took action as an enraged long-term customer. I cut my order way back. $105 for a silver proof set, forget it! I canceled that right away.

For regular proof sets, I bought one instead of two. For uncirculated sets, two instead of three. (One of these two remaining sets is a gift to a friend.) And finally, I bought one bag of the ‘S’ quarters instead of two. Perhaps if other collectors take action by cutting their orders, the Mint might just get the message. (Really it is the accountants who need to hear us.) This has not led to “happy collecting.”

Name and Address withheld