By David W. Lange – www.coincollectingboards.com ….
For Collectors of Antique Coin Boards
Number 45 — Winter 2018
HAS IT REALLY BEEN 10 YEARS?
Indeed, it has been 10 years since Coin Collecting Boards of the 1930s & 1940s was published by my own PennyBoardPress®.
It has also been 10 years since the first issue of CBN went out with a list of Coin Boards for Sale. For more than 20 years I’d been buying every single coin board that came my way. When I finally sat down to catalog all the varieties for my book I discovered that more than 500 pieces were duplicates, and these became my initial inventory of boards for sale. There were some really amazing items in those early lists. How about a rare Whitman Third Edition board for Large Cents in VF at just $30, a Standing Liberty 3E board in NM at only $28 or an Oberwise Buffalo Nickel board in VF-NM for that same price?
My second list included a very rare Earl & Koehler board for Lincolns in F-VF at just $78! We’ve come a long way since then, with boards like these almost impossible to restock and prices at multiples of 2007-08 levels.
THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN
It’s the season for updates, and I’m including with this issue updated Errata & Addenda sheets for all three books, as well a revised Check List & Value Guide for coin boards. There was not much price movement for the more common pieces, and the 2018 list reflects that fact.
Some upgrades became available during the past year, so prices are now posted for these boards in higher grades. The only general area of upward movement is in the values for Whitman Third Edition boards, the ones most sought by persons wanting to assemble coin sets. Aside from the commoner titles, these have proved to be very scarce. The growing number of non-board collectors who are providing me want lists of titles they seek to fill with coins has revealed how hard it is to find W3E boards for Barber Quarters and Halves, Standing Liberty Quarters and Halves and, as always, Peace Dollars. Prices for these titles, as well as those for Large Cents and Liberty Seated Dimes, are up across the board.
The listings on eBay over the past quarter have been dominated by common boards overpriced as Buy-It-Now items, and many of these continue to roll over from the previous quarter and even earlier. Some of these listings include full or partial sets of coins, and most of us know the challenge of deducting the value of the coins to see whether the board is a worthwhile purchase. Typically, the net cost of the board is still too high. The same problem applies to auction items that have starting bids well above their realistic values. This can be maddening in the case of desirable boards. I’m relieved to report that none of these listings I’ve seen over the past quarter included rare or very-high-grade pieces. I’ve made not a single board purchase from any source recently.
Given the paltry listings over the past quarter, it’s not surprising that there are no updates to the board book. There have been quite a few new varieties of coin albums surfacing in this same period, and the attached update sheets for my two other books reveal these developments. I encourage board collectors to consider moving into this area, which can make for very satisfying collecting.
Available now are 2018 update documents for all PennyBoard Press books. These include Coin Collecting Boards of the 1930s & 1940s; Coin Collecting Albums Volume One – Products of Beistle, Raymond and Meghrig; and Coin Collecting Albums Volume Two – Library of Coins & Treasury of Coins.
These documents, which feature all revisions and new varieties, will sent free of charge in PDF format to anyone requesting them by email to [email protected]. The coin board book documents also include an updated Check List & Value Guide reflecting new pricing for 2018.
Persons wishing to receive printed copies should send a self-addressed and stamped envelope to the address below, specifying the book(s) for which an update list is desired:
David W. Lange
Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211
COIN BOARD EPHEMERA
I continue to discover new references to coin boards among some of the more obscure numismatic publications. One of my favorite hunting grounds is Coin Wholesaler, a trade paper for coin dealers issued in the 1960s by Krause Publications. In the October 2, 1963 issue I found an ad for the American Standard Coin Book, a descendent of the little guide illustrated on Oberwise coin boards during the late 1930s and early ‘40s. It was published by Joe’s Los Angeles neighbor, R(inaldo) A(lexander) Wilson, Sr. This is illustrated below, along with a pre-printed envelope for J. Oberwise & Company that was mailed 11 years before Joe put out his first coin boards. The address of his bungalow residence/office is immediately recognizable, but he was still in the building trade at the time. I suspect that addressee Ida S. Metcalf may be his longtime girlfriend whom he married on his death bed, but only the first name is a match.
COIN BOARD REVIVALS
Though the classic era of coin board publishing ended around 1948, this format has been revived from time to time. A nice item from 1972 is shown below. This one-a-year board for Lincoln Cents was published by NELCO in Orlando, Florida. In all likelihood, NELCO stands for someone’s abbreviated name or initials followed by “Company”, but I don’t know that person’s identity. The artist signed his name, Bob MacCourt, which could provide some clue.
Another “modern” coin board is one that dates from 1965. It was intended to display a collection of Lincoln Cent mint error types arranged sequentially. While an interesting concept, but it doesn’t really allow for the fact that error coins are often misshapen or of the wrong size for the openings! This board was published by MARGOOD, which is an abbreviation of the creators’ names: Arnold MARgolis and Mort GOODman. Both were very well known in the error coin field at the time, though Goodman later got in trouble for creating fake doubled-die cents dated 1969(P). Because of this action, the Secret Service impulsively seized several of the genuine 1969-S doubled-die-obverse cents and destroyed them, despite pleas from numismatic experts who’d authenticated them. Also shown is an ad from the September, 1967 issue of COINage Magazine, which reveals that MARGOOD boards were priced at $2.95. They’re quite rare today, and I’ve seen only three examples.
STILL IN THEATERS
Well, not really, but my video interview at the Denver ANA Convention on the subject of coin board collecting is still showing at CoinWeek.com as of this writing. It’s likely that thousands of viewers have seen it over the past few months, which should be a shot in the arm to our hobby.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
My coin show attendance continues to slow, but there’s no escaping the annual Winter Fun Show. This year’s event is at the Tampa Convention Center, a pleasingly short ride from home. I’ll be at the NGC booth January 4-6, so please stop by and give me the board collectors’ secret handshake (ΩƐ Ɛ ).
—David W. Lange, coincollectingboards.com
The author’s desktop, featuring Gramercy coin boards as his computer wallpaper. Photo courtesy David W. Lange
* * *
Continuing his highly acclaimed series of books about coin boards and albums, numismatic researcher David W. Lange has written Coin Collecting Albums – A Complete History & Catalog Volume Two: The Library of Coins and the Treasury of Coins. In addition to providing detailed catalogs and photos of both coin album lines, this book provides a history of their publisher, The Coin and Currency Institute, and an entertaining biography of the company’s founder, famed coin dealer Robert Friedberg. Richly illustrated, this new book has 144 heavy and coated pages, including 64 pages in full color. It is a deluxe, hardcover volume that will last for many years. The price is $49.95, plus $10 for priority mail shipping in a rigid, protective box.
Also available from Lange’s PennyBoard PressTM are his two previous books.
Coin Collecting Albums – A Complete History & Catalog Volume One: The National Coin Album & Related Products of Beistle, Raymond & Meghrig. Published at $75, this deluxe, hardcover book is now available at just $49.95.
Coin Collecting Boards of the 1930s & 1940s: A Complete History, Catalog and Value Guide, published at $39.95, is now just $19.95. Shipping is the same as for the new book. Call or write for combined shipping of two or more books.
All books purchased from David W. Lange will be signed, unless requested otherwise, and personalized inscriptions are available upon request. Payment may be made by check to David W. Lange or via PayPal to [email protected]. David W. Lange may be contacted at POB 110022, Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211 or by telephone at (941) 586-8670. His website providing a history of vintage coin boards and from which he buys and sells such items, is coincollectingboards.com.
NGC-Certified Large Cents Currently Available on eBay