Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The ANA National Money Show 2016

I attended the “National Money Show” of the American Numismatic Association from March 3 thru 5 in Dallas.  It was my first ANA convention since 2004.  I served as an Exhibit Judge for both “Geography” and “Best of Show.”  I also delivered a “Money Talks” presentation, “From Texas to the Moon With John Leonard Riddell" (a version on this blog here.)  Over all, the show was a waste of time for me, though I did manage to salvage the experience.  The failure point was the absence of the videographer for my lecture. These presentations are never well attended. My goal was to make a recording for the ANA Library. As it was, bringing my wife doubled the audience.

(These comments are based on posts to the ANA website,, under Community/Forums.)

This was my first convention since Pittsburgh 2004. Before that, I made New York 2002, Ft. Lauderdale 2000, Cincinnati 1998, Cleveland 1997, Denver 1996, Detroit 1994 (the year I joined; and I lived in the area). And I write for The Numismatist. So, I know people; people know me. I also participate in online groups such as Also, I have been an exhibit judge for the ANA as well as for the Michigan State Numismatic Society, so, again, working this show, I had some social context. 
Approaching the ANA convention
these were fans of "Walker/Stalker"
a zombie convention.

Getting closer....

Front of the line!!
(For the zombie convention.)
The upside for me was working as an Exhibit Judge. I spent the better part of the day carefully reading displays about the art and science of the forms and uses of money.  
Meanwhile, at the ANA Convention...
I also used the bourse floor to validate the new book on Netherlands Gold Ducats (reviewed on the ANA website here ). It is a nice book. But before I gave it any stronger reviews than I already have, I wanted to test it on the floor against actual coins. As it was, I found 10 ducats on the floor and condemned eight of them as unofficial. They were probably good gold of full weight, but they were misattributed.
A modern official restrike of the coin issued from
1556 to 1817 and then from 1817 to present.
And, although I am not a collector, I did find a couple of historical items for myself. One was a little 6-krajczar billon coin, struck for the Hungarian revolution of 1848-1849. The other was a little dinar of Maximilian II 1586 Kremnica Mint. All together I spent $25 on the pair. 
Zombie hunters.
(You don't get this with coin hunters.)
Meeting new people is always a part of any ANA convention. My wife and I had a good time at dinner with a couple of the other judges, Halbert Carmichael and Steve Ippolito. 

The guys at Banknote Central -- Diego Pamio, Julio Staude, and Alejandro Dutto - demoed their software for me. It seemed pretty powerful and anyone with a serious collection to manage, or any dealer with inventory to track, would be a likely customer.
My local coin guys showed up.
In the same vein, Christina Chow of Collectors.Com was nice enough to explain her company's business to me. In fact, she said that they might extend an opportunity to partner with Banknote Central.
With my favorite editor
Todd Pollock of BLUCC Photos took photographs of three of my purchases. His price was reasonable ($8 each) and I am looking forward to the images.

The best part of any numismatic convention is what you did not expect to learn. I was sitting at a table waiting for the dealer and the guy next to me was admiring a banknote. It was French Overseas Territories, a nice note with a fair price to go with it, but way beyond my interest. I asked him where it was from. Neither of us recognized the territory.  So, he googled it.  We both were even more puzzled. The note showed Africans and grass huts. "They're gonna be pretty cold in Newfoundland," I said. He googled it again and got the same answer.  

Aluminum but still pretty.
That night, in my room, I fired up my computer and read about St. Pierre et Miquelon. It is the only French Overseas Territory in North America.  Following the French-Indian Wars, it stayed with France. Over the years it changed hands as a result of this treaty or that. For some years, it apparently was unpopulated. During World War II, the official government was supposed to be under Vichy, but the people kicked them out and went Free French. The banknote series is intended for all of the territories in general, with the specific territory added as an overprint. Hence, the tropical theme for the very untropical St. Pierre et Miquelon. Then, I found a set of uncirculated 1F and 2F coins, which I added to my collection. The obverse features a woman with wings on her head. I have them from other French colonies with my set of Mercury numismatics.


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