Catalogues including high-quality plates of ancient coins have been in demand for many years as collectors and dealers use them to trace the provenance of individual coins. While the various European auction series have been thoroughly investigated, however, it is often the case that early American catalogues are neglected. In fact, a number of American catalogues from before the Second World War offered important ancient coins. Here are a few that caught our eye as we were cataloguing our upcoming 2018 New York Book Auction, to be held on Saturday, January 13:

Lot 343: S.H. Chapman’s May 1911 catalogue of the Julius Brown collection. Features seven very fine photographic plates of coins, three of which include choice Greek silver and gold, ancient Roman gold, and Byzantine coins, as well as a Year Two shekel. This is unlisted in Spring’s bibliography.

Lot 345: Henry Chapman’s December 1921 catalogue of the John Story Jenks collection, with 42 superb photographic plates of coins and medals. The first six large-format plates depict choice ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine coins. This is Spring 100.

Lot 351: Edward Cogan’s June 1869 catalogue of the Mortimer Mackenzie collection. This was the first numismatic auction catalogue to feature photographic plates, and one of them depicts the obverses of 17 choice ancient coins. This is unlisted in Spring.

Lot 369: Tom Elder’s May 1920 catalogue of the Henry Miller collection. This catalogue is important in at least three different areas (Roman silver, early English, and early American coins), and includes 28 superb photographic plates, more than half of which portray ancient coins. Surprisingly, this is unlisted in Spring.

Lot 370: Elder’s June 1929 catalogue of the George Alfred Lawrence collection, with 22 exceptional photographic plates, four of which are devoted to ancient Greek and Roman coins. This is also unlisted in Spring.

Lot 374: A bound volume of 35 auction catalogues from 1879, important for including the very rare plated version of Scott & Company’s March 1879 sale of the S.B. Schieffelin collection. This catalogue includes four fine albumen plates depicting ancient coins and is among the rarest plated American sale catalogues of the 19th century. The Schieffelin catalogue is unlisted in Spring.

In addition to the above, several other American books and catalogues discuss or portray ancient coins to varying extents, making it clear that the savvy bidder would do well to check the North American section for material beyond what one might expect.

The entire catalogue can be found on Kolbe & Fanning Numismatic Booksellers custom third-party bidding platform at bid.numislit.com. Bidders may register for the sale there and can leave absentee bids for items of interest; live bidding during the auction itself will also be offered through that site. The sale will be held beginning at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 13, at the Grand Hyatt hotel in New York, and is being held in conjunction with the New York International Numismatic Convention (NYINC).

For more information, please contact David Fanning at df@numislit.com.

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Bids may be placed via post, email, fax or phone, as well as online. Kolbe & Fanning is using Auction Mobility as our third-party online bidding platform. Auction Mobility is an app-based platform allowing users the ability to participate in the sale through phones, tablets and computers. To register for the sale, bidders must go to bid.numislit.com and sign up. Once you have set up an account, you may browse lots, place advance bids, or participate in the live sale online. Those wishing to participate on their devices can download the new Kolbe & Fanning app through the Apple or Google Play Store.

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