Always Buying Coins, Currency, and Cool Stuff.

Archive for January 2012

2007 Somalia Motorcycle One Dollar Coins

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It look like 2007 was a good year for motorcycle enthusiasts, in Somalia that is.  That year they introduced six motorcycle shaped coins in brilliant color.  Each coin was worth one dollar.  I have never held any of these coins, but I sure think they’re fun.

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 31, 2012 at 7:31 am

Money Museum Receives 1792 Half Disme from California Coin Dealer

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Historically significant coin valued at more than $220,000

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO. — The Edward C. Rochette Money Museum collection now contains a 1792 Half Disme, thanks to the generosity of a California coin dealer.

The early American coin, valued at more than $220,000, was donated by Steven L. Contursi, president of Rare Coin Wholesalers of Irvine, Calif.

“This coin will be a fantastic, historically significant addition to the museum’s collection. I can’t thank Steve enough for his generosity,” American Numismatic Association President Tom Hallenbeck said.

About 1,500 half disme silver coins were struck in the basement of a Philadelphia saw-maker’s shop in July 1792 because the U.S. Mint was not yet operational. The coins were the first authorized by President Washington under the Mint Act of 1792. Thomas Jefferson, who was Secretary of State at the time, personally received the coins on Washington’s behalf.

A half disme is slightly smaller than a modern dime and weighs half as much. Disme – pronounced “deem” – is an early spelling of the word, dime.  Modern researchers estimate that about 275, in various states of condition, survive today.

“This donation was very touching. We haven’t received a donation of this caliber in many years,” Museum Director Tiffanie Bueschel said.

Contursi made headlines in December when he sold the unique 1787 EB on Breast Brasher Doubloon, which subsequently was acquired for $7.4 million by a Wall Street hedge fund. He also sold the 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar, believed by some to be the first U.S. silver dollar ever minted, for $7.8 million in a private sale in May 2010. The silver dollar was on display at the Money Museum for several years.

“I have a background of handling the sales of some of the earliest U.S. coins, so donating this historically significant coin made sense,” Contursi said. “This donation is my way of giving back to the ANA for the wonderful things that they do for collectors.”

The coin’s condition was assessed recently by Numismatic Guaranty Company chairman Mark Salzberg. “I’ve seen several dozen different examples during my career – this coin is far nicer than most. It’s well struck and problem-free with just the lightest touch of circulation wear and rich patina,” Salzberg said.

The public will get a chance to see the coin on display at the spring ANA National Money Show, May 10-12 in Denver. Find out more at

Image/Copy: ANA

The|Coinologist. | Check It Out

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Safe Find | California Car Wash Safe Revisited

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I was recently back in the Bay Area and once again found myself at Lozano’s Car Wash in Mountain View, which has a classic Americana design that resonates throughout California.   Here is where I first stumbled upon an antique safe and decided to create the “Safe” category for The|Coinologist.  This safe was manufactured by the Cary Safe Company of Buffalo, NY.  I would say it is no worse for ware, though the fun dog magnet has seem run off.  Check out other Coinologist “Safes” posts here.

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Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 26, 2012 at 7:26 am

Crosswind Landings At Düsseldorf | Cool Stuff

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Remember all those bumpy landings you’ve had while flying, we all know they aren’t easy to forget.  Here is an amazing video that might just show what your jet looked like from the runway!  Check out other Coinologist “Cool Stuff” here.

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 25, 2012 at 1:25 am

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U.S. Mint Lifting Ordering Limits | 2011 ATB Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Vicksburg National Military Park Coin

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The U.S. Mint has announced effective noon tomorrow – Wednesday, January 25, 2012 – “We are lifting the household ordering limits on the 2011 ATB Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin.”   The Vicksburg National Military Park Coin is available here .

Image: U.S. Mint

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 24, 2012 at 1:25 pm

Nominations for the ANA Hall of Fame are due Jan. 31

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The Numismatic Hall of Fame is where we enshrine those who have made a lasting contribution to our hobby. It’s a place for authors, collectors, researchers and teachers.

New members are elected to the Hall of Fame every two years. Who will be in the next class for the Hall of Fame? It all begins with you.

Download the nomination form from the Hall of Fame page at Tell us a little about your nominees — what did they contribute to the field of numismatics? Which organizations were they active in? What awards have they won? Have they published books or magazine articles?

Send those nominations by Jan. 31 to the attention of Ann Rahn, ANA executive assistant, by mail to 818 N. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs, CO, 80903. Or email your nominations

Image/Text:  ANA

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 24, 2012 at 7:24 am

United States Mint Lowers Prices for Several 2012 Numismatic Products

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WASHINGTON – The United States Mint is pleased to announce that it is reducing or maintaining 2011 prices for some of its most popular products to be offered in 2012.  The bureau was able to set these lower prices and maintain others by refining the product costing process, taking advantage of current lower prices for precious metals and negotiating better pricing from its suppliers.

“We hope these prices will allow us to attract more Americans to coin collecting, while increasing collecting opportunities for our current customer base,” said United States Mint Deputy Director Richard A. Peterson.

Products with reduced prices in 2012 include the following:
United States Mint Uncirculated Coin Set® – reduced from $31.95 to $27.95
America the Beautiful Quarters Three-Coin SetTM – reduced from $14.95 to $9.95
America the Beautiful Quarters Uncirculated Coin SetTM – reduced from $21.95 to $12.95
America the Beautiful Quarters® 100-Coin Bag – reduced from $49.95 to $34.95
American Eagle Proof Silver Dollar – reduced from $68.45 to $61.95*
Presidential and Native American $1 Coin Rolls – reduced from $39.95 to $32.95
United States Mint Presidential $1 Coin Proof SetTM – reduced from $19.95 to $18.95
Presidential $1 Coin Uncirculated SetTM – reduced from $19.95 to $16.95
United States Mint Presidential $1 Coin & First Spouse Medal SetTM – reduced from $14.95 to $9.95

In addition, 2012 prices will be the same for the United States Mint Proof Set®, priced at $31.95, and the United States Mint Silver Proof Set®, priced at $67.95.*

* Pricing for products containing silver, gold and platinum are subject to change throughout the year based on market volatility.

Image/Text: U.S.Mint

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 23, 2012 at 7:23 am

Silver Facts

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I wonder if this Silver Fact is a little dated.  The influence of digital photography must have changed the use of this precious mental in photography!

Written by Robert L. Wilson

January 20, 2012 at 7:20 am

2012 United States Mint America the Beautiful | Quarters Proof Set

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This set of five exquisitely crafted proof quality quarters is a must-have for coin collectors! Enhance your collection and celebrate the beauty of El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico, Chaco Culture National Historical Park in New Mexico, Acadia National Park in Maine, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii and Denali National Park and Preserve in Alaska. Collectors and nature enthusiasts alike will marvel at the creative and intricate designs that showcase the uniqueness and beauty of each national site. Storing or displaying this set is easy since all coins are encased in a clear plastic lens. Add this collectible keepsake to your collection and order today!.

Image/Text: U.S.Mint

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