The One Hundred Greatest Items Of United States Numismatic Literature

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The One Hundred Greatest Items Of United States Numismatic Literature

A Survey of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society


Leonard Augsburger, 2009

At the 2007 American Numismatic Association Convention, NBS President John Adams proposed a NBS survey of the greatest United States numismatic literature. A candidate list of approximately four hundred items was published in the Fall, 2007 Asylum. Readers were invited to suggest additional candidates, these were added and a final ballot was distributed to the membership. Sixty ballots were returned by NBS members, numbering the top one hundred items from one (highest) to one hundred. One hundred points were awarded for a first place vote, ninety-nine for second place, and so on. An Excel spreadsheet was used to record and add the votes. No adjustments have been made to the resulting totals – this survey thus reflects the collective opinion of the voters. Individual ballots, naturally, varied from the final list. Indeed, biases were evident in a number of ballots and in some cases clearly betrayed the collecting specialties of the voter – one medals, another colonials, or perhaps currency, and so on. Recent works tended to rate more highly than previous efforts, perhaps reflecting an increased familiarity with the current literature, or the simple fact that modern researchers possess greatly expanded access to archival and other resources. Comprehensive and general works are frequently found towards the top of the list, while specialized efforts are scattered throughout. Numismatic literature guides performed well in the survey, as one might expect from NBS voters.[1]

The list as a whole is eminently collectable, particularly if one allows the occasional reprint into the fold. There are no unique or impossible items here. No doubt a few NBS members already have the entire set, and to those who have had the foresight to anticipate the top selections of the membership, your work is already done. For the rest of us, here is a challenge; the reward will be a comprehensive library of the core works of United States numismatic literature.

The author acknowledges Charles Davis’ American Numismatic Literature, William Malkmus’ cumulative index of The Asylum appearing in The Asylum Volume 25 Supplement, Martin Gengerke’s American Numismatic Auctions, and John Adams’ United States Numismatic Literature, volumes I and II, all of which were invaluable in the preparation of this article. Elizabeth Hahn, ANS Librarian, and RyAnne Scott, ANA Library Manager, were helpful in responding to research and loan queries. Joel Orosz loaned a number of the Top 100 entries from his numismatic library. Dave Harper contributed the entry on the Numismatic News (#65). Michael Savinelli contributed to the Rare Coin Review entry (#66). Finally, thanks are in order to NBS Secretary-Treasurer David Sundman, who coordinated the printing and distribution of the Top 100 ballots.

The One Hundred Greatest Items of United States Numismatic Literature:

  1. BREEN, Walter H. WALTER BREEN’S COMPLETE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF U.S. AND COLONIAL COINS. New York: 1988.
  2. CROSBY, Sylvester Sage. EARLY COINS OF AMERICA. Boston: 1875.
  3. American Numismatic Association. THE NUMISMATIST. Monroe, et al: 1888 to date.
  4. YEOMAN, Richard S. A GUIDE BOOK OF UNITED STATES COINS. Racine: 1946 to date.
  5. SHELDON, William H, PASCHAL, Dorothy & BREEN Walter. PENNY WHIMSY. New York: 1958.
  6. Stack’s. THE JOHN J. FORD, JR. COLLECTION. PARTS 1-21. New York: 2003-2007.
  7. Amos Press. COIN WORLD. Sidney: 1960 to date.
  8. Bowers & Ruddy Galleries. THE GARRETT COLLECTION SALES. PARTS 1–4. Los Angeles: 1979-1981.
  9. JUDD, J. Hewitt. UNITED STATES PATTERN, EXPERIMENTAL AND TRIAL PIECES. Racine: 1959.
  10. Bowers & Ruddy Galleries, Bowers & Merena, Inc. THE LOUIS E. ELIASBERG SR. COLLECTION. PARTS 1–3. New York, NY & Wolfeboro: 1982, 1996-1997.
  11. American Numismatic Society. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF NUMISMATICS. VOLUMES 1-53. Boston & New York: 1866–1924.
  12. TAXAY, Don. THE U.S. MINT AND COINAGE. New York: 1966.
  13. BETTS, Charles W. AMERICAN COLONIAL HISTORY ILLUSTRATED BY CONTEMPORARY MEDALS. New York: 1894.
  14. BOWERS, Q. David. THE HISTORY OF UNITED STATES COINAGE AS ILLUSTRATED BY THE GARRETT COLLECTION. Los Angeles: 1979.
  15. NEWMAN, Eric P. THE EARLY PAPER MONEY OF AMERICA. Racine: 1967.
  16. SHELDON, William H. EARLY AMERICAN CENTS. New York: 1949.
  17. NEWCOMB, Howard R. UNITED STATES COPPER CENTS 1816–1857. New York: 1944.
  18. MARIS, Edward. A HISTORIC SKETCH OF THE COINS OF NEW JERSEY. Philadelphia: 1881.
  19. Bowers & Merena Galleries. THE NORWEB COLLECTION. PARTS 1–3. New York: 1987-1988.
  20. BREEN, Walter H. WALTER BREEN'S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF UNITED STATES AND COLONIAL PROOF COINS 1722–1977. Albertson: 1977.
  21. ADAMS, John W. UNITED STATES NUMISMATIC LITERATURE. VOLUMES 1-2. Mission Viejo, CA & Crestline: 1982, 1990.
  22. BOWERS, Q. David. SILVER DOLLARS AND TRADE DOLLARS OF THE UNITED STATES. VOLUMES 1–2. Wolfeboro: 1993.
  23. LOUBAT, Joseph Florimond, Duke Of. THE MEDALLIC HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES, 1776–1876. New York: 1878.
  24. BOWERS, Q. David. A CALIFORNIA GOLD RUSH HISTORY. Newport Beach: 2002.
  25. BREEN, Walter H. WALTER BREEN’S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF UNITED STATES HALF CENTS 1793–1857. South Gate: 1983.
  26. NEWMAN, Eric P. & BRESSETT, Ken E[dward]. THE FANTASTIC 1804 DOLLAR. Racine: 1962.
  27. Bowers & Merena Galleries. THE HARRY W. BASS, JR. COLLECTION. PARTS 1–4. New York: 1999-2000.
  28. BURDETTE, Roger. RENAISSANCE OF AMERICAN COINAGE. VOLUMES 1–3. Great Falls: 2005, 2006, 2007.
  29. JULIAN, Robert. MEDALS OF THE UNITED STATES MINT, THE FIRST CENTURY, 1792–1892. El Cajon: 1977.
  30. HEATON, Augustus G. A TREATISE ON THE COINAGE OF THE UNITED STATES BRANCH MINTS. Washington, D.C.: 1893.
  31. BOLENDER, M. H. THE UNITED STATES EARLY SILVER DOLLARS 1794–1803. Freeport: 1950.
  32. LOW, Lyman H. DESCRIPTIVE CATALOGUE OF HARD TIMES TOKENS. Boston: 1886.
  33. Hewitt Publications: HEWITT, Lee F., Editor. THE NUMISMATIC SCRAPBOOK. Chicago: 1935-1976.
  34. Numismatic Bibliomania Society. THE ASYLUM. Pittsburgh: 1980 to date.
  35. Early American Coppers Club. PENNY WISE. Orlando, et al: 1967 to date.
  36. BROWNING, Ard W. EARLY QUARTER DOLLARS OF THE UNITED STATES 1796-1838. New York: 1925.
  37. NOE, Sydney P. THE NEW ENGLAND AND WILLOW TREE COINAGES OF MASSACHUSETTS. New York: 1943.
  38. STEWART, Frank H. HISTORY OF THE FIRST UNITED STATES MINT. Camden: 1924.
  39. FRIEDBERG, Robert. PAPER MONEY OF THE UNITED STATES. New York: 1953.
  40. ADAMS, E. H. & WOODIN, W. H. UNITED STATES PATTERN, TRIAL AND EXPERIMENTAL PIECES. New York: 1913.
  41. FULD, George; FULD, Melvin. PATRIOTIC CIVIL WAR TOKENS. Racine: 1960.
  42. OVERTON, Al. EARLY HALF DOLLAR DIE VARIETIES 1794–1836. Colorado Springs: 1967.
  43. FULD, George & FULD, Melvin. U.S. CIVIL WAR STORE CARDS. n.p.: 1972.
  44. DAVIS, Charles. AMERICAN NUMISMATIC LITERATURE. Lincoln: 1992.
  45. Colonial Newsletter Foundation. THE COLONIAL NEWSLETTER. Huntsville, et al: 1960 to date.
  46. COHEN, Roger S. AMERICAN HALF CENTS: "THE LITTLE HALF SISTERS". Bethesda: 1971.
  47. KOLBE, George Frederick. THE HARRY W. BASS, JR. NUMISMATIC LIBRARY. PARTS 1–4. Crestline: 1998–2000.
  48. VERMEULE, Cornelius. NUMISMATIC ART IN AMERICA. Cambridge: 1971.
  49. BAKER, William S. MEDALLIC PORTRAITS OF WASHINGTON, WITH HISTORICAL AND CRITICAL NOTES. Philadelphia: 1885.
  50. HAXBY, James A. A STANDARD CATALOG OF UNITED STATES OBSOLETE BANK NOTES, 1782-1866 VOLUMES 1-4. Iola: 1988.
  51. BREEN, Walter H. WALTER BREEN’S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF EARLY UNITED STATES CENTS, 1793–1814. Wolfeboro: 1983.
  52. NOE, Sydney P. THE PINE TREE COINAGE OF MASSACHUSETTS. New York: 1952.
  53. NOYES, William C. UNITED STATES LARGE CENTS 1793–1814. Bloomington: 1991.
  54. RULAU, Russell. STANDARD CATALOG OF UNITED STATES TOKENS, 1700–1900. Iola: 1994
  55. NOE, Sydney P. THE OAK TREE COINAGE OF MASSACHUSETTS. New York: 1947.
  56. New York Coin & Stamp Co. CATALOGUE OF THE COLLECTION OF COINS, THE PROPERTY OF MR. LORIN G. PARMELEE. New York: June 25-27, 1890.
  57. CHAPMAN, S. H. & H. CATALOGUE OF THE COLLECTION OF COINS AND MEDALS OF CHARLES I. BUSHNELL. New York: Bangs & Co, June 20-24, 1882.
  58. EVANS, George G. HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES MINT AT PHILADELPHIA. Philadelphia: 1885.
  59. ATTINELLI, Emmanuel J. NUMISGRAPHICS. New York: 1876.
  60. BOWERS, Q. David AMERICAN NUMISMATICS BEFORE THE CIVIL WAR, 1760–1860. Wolfeboro: 1998.
  61. VAN ALLEN, Leroy; MALLIS, George COMPREHENSIVE CATALOGUE OF U.S. MORGAN AND PEACE SILVER DOLLARS. New York: 1971.
  62. KAGIN, Donald H. PRIVATE GOLD COINS AND PATTERNS OF THE UNITED STATES. New York: 1981.
  63. BREEN, Walter H. & GILLIO, Ronald. CALIFORNIA PIONEER FRACTIONAL GOLD. Santa Barbara: 1983.
  64. BEISTLE, M. L. A REGISTER OF HALF DOLLAR DIE VARIETIES AND SUB-VARIETIES. Shippensburg: 1929.
  65. HARPER, David C., Editor. NUMISMATIC NEWS. Iola: 1952 to date.
  66. Hathaway and Bowers Galleries, et al. RARE COIN REVIEW. Santa Fe Springs, et al: 1969-2003
  67. CAROTHERS, Neil. FRACTIONAL MONEY. Brooklyn: 1930.
  68. KOLBE, George Frederick. NUMISMATICA AMERICANA: THE JOHN J. FORD, JR. REFERENCE LIBRARY. PARTS 1-2. Riverside & Long Beach: 2004-2005.
  69. BOWERS, Q. David. THE AMERICAN NUMISMATIC ASSOCIATION CENTENNIAL HISTORY. VOLUMES 1-2. Wolfeboro: 1991.
  70. DICKESON, Montroville Wilson. THE AMERICAN NUMISMATICAL MANUAL. Philadelphia: 1859.
  71. WOODWARD, W. Elliot. CATALOGUE OF THE NUMISMATIC COLLECTION FORMED BY JOSEPH J. MICKLEY, ESQ. New York: October 28 - November 2, 1867.
  72. BOWERS, Q. David. ADVENTURES WITH RARE COINS. Los Angeles: 1979.
  73. Akers Numismatics, Inc., David'. THE JOHN JAY PITTMAN COLLECTION. PARTS 1–3. Baltimore & Rosemont: 1997-1999.
  74. GARRETT, Jeff & GUTH, Ron. ENCYCLOPEDIA OF U.S. GOLD COINS 1795–1933. Florence: 2006.
  75. MEHL, B. Max. THE W.F. DUNHAM COLLECTION. Fort Worth: June 3, 1941.
  76. HIBLER, Harold E. & KAPPEN, Charles V[aughn]. SO-CALLED DOLLARS. New York: 1963.
  77. BOWERS, Q. David. OBSOLETE PAPER MONEY. Atlanta: 2006.
  78. ADAMS, John W. & BENTLEY, Anne E. COMITIA AMERICANA AND RELATED MEDALS. Crestline: 2007.
  79. ECKFELDT, Jacob R. & DUBOIS, William E. A MANUAL OF GOLD AND SILVER COINS OF ALL NATIONS. Philadelphia: 1842.
  80. Bowers & Ruddy Galleries. THE CELEBRATED JOHN W. ADAMS COLLECTION. Los Angeles: 1982.
  81. FIVAZ, Bill & STANTON, J. T. THE CHERRYPICKER’S GUIDE TO RARE DIE VARIETIES. Savannah: 1990.
  82. NOYES, William C. UNITED STATES LARGE CENTS 1816–1839. Bloomington: 1991.
  83. CLAPP, George H. THE UNITED STATES CENTS OF THE YEARS 1798–1799. Sewickley: 1931.
  84. CHAPMAN, Henry. CATALOG OF THE COLLECTION OF COINS OF THE LATE MATTHEW ADAMS STICKNEY, ESQ. Philadelphia: June 25-29, 1907.
  85. CHAPMAN, Henry. CATALOGUE OF THE JOHN STORY JENKS COLLECTION OF COINS. Philadelphia: December 7-17, 1921.
  86. American Numismatic Society. EXHIBITION OF UNITED STATES AND COLONIAL COINS. New York: 1914.
  87. FROSSARD, Ed., Editor. NUMISMA. VOLUMES 1-10. Irvington: 1877–1891.
  88. Auctions By Bowers and Merena, Inc. THE FREDERICK B. TAYLOR COLLECTION. New York: March 26, 1987.
  89. VALENTINE, Daniel W. THE UNITED STATES HALF DIMES. New York: 1931.
  90. AKERS, David W. UNITED STATES GOLD PATTERNS. Racine: 1975.
  91. GENGERKE, Martin. AMERICAN NUMISMATIC AUCTIONS. Woodside: 1985.
  92. MARIS, Edward. VARIETIES OF THE COPPER ISSUES OF THE UNITED STATES MINT IN THE YEAR 1794. Philadelphia: 1869.
  93. Sotheby & Co. THE PALACE COLLECTIONS OF EGYPT. Cairo: February 24-March 6, 1954.
  94. NEWCOMB, Howard R. THE UNITED STATES CENTS OF THE YEARS 1801–1802–1803. Detroit: 1925.
  95. Haseltine, John W. CATALOGUE OF JOHN W. HASELTINE'S TYPE TABLE. New York: November 28-30, 1881.
  96. Heritage Galleries & Auctioneers. THE JULES REIVER COLLECTION. PARTS 1-3. Dallas: January 24-28, 2006.
  97. RULAU, Russell & FULD, George. MEDALLIC PORTRAITS OF WASHINGTON. Iola: 1985.
  98. HEATH, Laban. HEATH’S INFALLIBLE COUNTERFEIT DETECTOR AT SIGHT et al. Boston: 1864.
  99. CLAPP, George H. & NEWCOMB, Howard R. THE UNITED STATES CENTS OF THE YEARS 1795, 1796, 1797 AND 1800. New York: 1947.
  100. BRUNK, Gregory C. AMERICAN AND CANADIAN COUNTER MARKED COINS. Rockford: 1987.


References

  1. Numismatic Bibliomania Society Voting Results: The One Hundred Greatest Works.