CoinsbyGary

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About this journal

When I was a young boy, my cousin introduced me to the hobby of coin collecting. Because I was also interested in photography, I used to frequent a local camera store. Along with camera supplies, this store had a rotating display case full of coins that I enjoyed scrolling through. My very first coin purchase was an 1881-S Morgan Dollar in BU PL condition; this coin was old, shiny, and inexpensive at just $12! Now 35 years later, I still own that 1881-S Morgan Dollar, even though it is still worth less than $100. I loved looking through the Red Book dreaming of the coins I would buy if I had the money, especially the coins in the back of the book where the gold listings are. As a teenager, I was beginning to show signs of gold fever.

Working through high school, I spent the bulk of the money I did not save on coin purchases. My first gold purchase as a teenager was an 1881 BU Half Eagle for $105 from a mail order ad in "Coins" magazine. Since then I have had this coin graded, and it resides in my Gold Liberty type collection graded at PCGS MS-62.

My next gold purchase as a youth stretched my resources. I purchased an 1858-C VF Half Eagle for $350, and my attraction to this coin was that it had a low mintage from an obscure branch mint. I also enjoy the comradely among fellow coin enthusiasts, and once I invited a kid to attend a coin show with me who was much younger than I was. As fate would have it, this kid happened to be the son of my mother’s boss. This boss always said to my mother how impressed he was with me taking his son to that show. As for me, I enjoy the company of fellow coin collectors, whoever they may be.

Two other purchases I made as a teen were an 1876 20-cent piece and an 1885-CC Morgan Dollar from the Lavere Redfield hoard. Since then my collecting has been sporadic, depending on my life situation. However, the passion has always been there. Gold has still not lost its luster with me, and today I am a very active collector. The cousin that introduced me to coin collecting years ago no longer collects. For a different twist on my collection, visit my website at: coinsbygary.com

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Entries in this journal

White Tuxes for my Foreigns

Crossing over five PCGS world coins over to NGC confirms one of my long held suspicions, but does not effectively answer the question, does NGC under grade its world coins or does PCGS over grade theirs? The world may never know, however this I do know with certainty, NGC is more conservative in grading world coins than PCGS is. Most of you will recall that earlier in the year NGC changed their policy of allowing PCGS coins into their world registry to an exclusively NGC registry. I remember b

gherrmann44

gherrmann44

10/18/2012

Garys October Coin of the Month

Two months after the Olympic Games and a month before our national elections, Octobers Coin of the Month (Volume 2, Number 2) is a 1995-P PCGS PR69DCAM Special Olympics Commemorative Dollar featuring Eunice Kennedy Shriver. The 1995 Special Olympics Games Commemorative Dollar has the same metallic composition and dimensions as a standard US silver dollar. The mintage of the proof coin struck in Philadelphia, is 351,764 while the uncirculated coin struck at West Point, has a mintage of 89,301.

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gherrmann44

09/30/2012

All Under One Roof

My entire collection of Coin of the Month articles is all in one place. With some friendly encouragement from VUMC409 I gathered all my Coin of the Month articles together and archived them on coinsbygary.com . Now organized into two volumes all my COTM are easily accessible anytime. To access the COTM articles click on the collections button from the main page. Then click the miscellaneous link to direct you to one of two links that leads you to the index page of either Volume 1 or Volume 2 C

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gherrmann44

09/03/2012

Garys September Coin of the Month

Septembers Coin of the Month (Volume 2, Number 1) is an NGC AU-55, 1897 close date, Cuba Souvenir Peso. Modeled after the Columbian Exposition Half Dollar, the purpose of the 1897 Cuba Souvenir Peso was to raise money for the Cuban Revolutionary Party and their war for independence against Spain. On May 10, 1897, the head of the Cuban Revolutionary Party, Don Thomas Estrada Palma, placed an order with the Gorham Manufacturing Company for three million souvenir pesos. As per their agreement, de

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gherrmann44

09/01/2012

Garys August Coin of the Month

This Months Coin of the Month is an NGC MS-66, 1971, 200 Rupee gold coin (KM# 39) from the island nation of Mauritius and is dedicated to my wife Linda. The Island of Mauritius is a small island east of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean. The island was uninhabited when Arab sailors first landed there during the Middle Ages. In 1505, the Portuguese became the first Europeans to discover the island. Eventually, the island came under the control of the Dutch (1598-1712), the French (1715-1810), and

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gherrmann44

07/31/2012

There is Nothing Like Seeing it in the Hand

I doubted a CAC NGC VF-25 1895-S Morgan Dollar I won at auction until I got it in the hand. Greetings everyone, I hope you all had a wonderful Fourth of July holiday. A few weeks ago, I won a VF-25 1895-S Morgan Dollar through Heritage Auctions. The 1895-S is one of four coins I identified as a key coin in my Morgan Dollar collection. As is my custom, I always try to buy the key coins for my collection as soon as practical. In this instance though, my overzealous desire to buy an 1895-S Morgan

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gherrmann44

07/12/2012

Julys Coin of the Month and our first 100 years of Independence

The Coin of the Month for July is an 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition Medal designed by William Barber. To help finance the exposition, Congress authorized the striking of commemorative medals in June of 1874. Overall, there were two different medals, each struck in a variety of metallic compositions. One medal was 38mm in diameter and the other 57mm. My Coin of the Month is the 57mm Julian CM-11 medal struck in white metal and graded MS-61 by NGC. White metal is an alloy composed of 82

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gherrmann44

06/30/2012

Junes Coin of the Month is Out of this World

Junes Coin of the Month is a NGC PFUC-69 French 2009 10 Euro coin that commemorates the International Year of Astronomy and the 40th anniversary of mans first steps on the moon. Greetings everyone, ever since I was a boy, I have had two enduring interests. The one is obvious, and it has to do with collecting coins. The other is not quite as apparent and has to do with science fiction and space exploration. This month, my Coin of the Month post brings both of these unrelated interests together

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gherrmann44

05/31/2012

My First Great Collections Consignment

My first consignment with Great Collections is a success despite the recent fall in the gold market that depressed my bottom line. About a year ago, I decided to discontinue collecting First Spouse gold coins and liquidate my collection. Three weeks ago on consignment through Great Collections, I sold four First Spouse coins. With those four coins were six other coins; they were an 1881-CC PCGS rattler Morgan Dollar, three Eisenhower dollars, and a common date Roosevelt Dime and Washington Qua

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gherrmann44

05/26/2012

The Results are In and So So

The moment I have been waiting for has arrived and I received my 1876 Centennial Medal back from NCS fully graded in an oversize holder at MS-61. Greetings all, a little more than one month ago I submitted an 1876 Centennial Medal that I had just purchased, to NCS for conservation. The medal struck in white-metal displayed black, almost goop-like residue on all the high points of the relief. The effect of this residue seemed to deaden the details of the devices on the medal and in particular,

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gherrmann44

05/06/2012

Garys May Coin of the Month (couldnt wait to post this)

This months Coin of the Month is a PCGS MS-63, 1936-S, Columbia, South Carolina Sesquicentennial Commemorative Half-Dollar. I am dedicating this post to BeawChan because he has a collection of classic commemorative half-dollars and to Six Mile Rick because he lives in South Carolina. In addition, these two individuals are good friends who have contributed much to Collectors Society. In 1936, the United States Mint issued an unusually large assortment of commemorative half-dollars. I believe th

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gherrmann44

04/29/2012

 

Hot off the press! New rules on E-Bay

What does the collecting community out there think of these changes? I think theyre a step in the right direction to truth in purchasing on E-Bay As coin collecting continues to grow and thrive on eBay, customers have told us time and again that knowing they can buy and sell with confidence is important. Well be updating eBays Stamps, currency, and coins policy to help foster that confidence--this update may impact your coin listings. Starting May 30, all new listings and relistings in coin

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gherrmann44

04/17/2012

Three Point Wonders

If there is anything that rubs me the wrong way, its paying $300 for a classic coin thats worth a paltry three registry points. When it comes to points, I am not as much interested in total points or competing with other collectors as I am competing with myself. It is this sense of competition and pure absurdity that I just cannot tolerate one-point slaps in the face or three-point wonders. In a manner of speaking, I am also competing against the points themselves. For instance, I have an M

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gherrmann44

04/07/2012

Garys April Coin of the Month

The coin featured this month comes from Peru and completes my three part series on the Seated National Personifications. Some time ago, I remember Collectors Society member Jackson opining about a Peruvian gold coin he won at auction almost by accident. What caught my eye about this coin though is that with a few exceptions, it resembles the Seated Liberty motif on our coins. After reading Jacksons post, I thought to add a coin like his to my Inspirational Ladies custom set. However, I did not

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gherrmann44

04/01/2012

1876 US Centennial Exposition Medal

Just a short post this time, but I had to share my latest acquisition. Greetings all, I just wanted to share a cool medal I came across on E-Bay. This medal was engraved by William Barber, and minted by the US Mint to finance the 1876 US Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. I will have much more to say about the medal later, but from the first time I saw it, I had to have it. Naturally this medal is destined for my Inspirational Ladies custom set. This medal is struck in white metal and as

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gherrmann44

03/29/2012

The E-Bay Phenomenon

E-Bay can be good resource for purchasing coins, but there is one caveat to be aware of, Buyer Beware! I find the electronic store a fascinating phenomenon. Consider this; if dealers were overcharging their customers in brick-and-mortar coin shops, it would not be long before they went out of business. For a brick-and-mortar business to survive it has to have robust sales. A dealer running a coin shop with high overhead costs in a community with a limited amount of potential customers cannot c

gherrmann44

gherrmann44

03/24/2012

In the Mean Time...

I must confess that of lately I have been focused on my web site and Coin of the Month posts. However, behind the scenes my collection has been quietly growing. Greetings all, in the area of web design I have come a long way in a short time. After coinsbygary.com launched, VUMC409 essentially turned the keys over to me for the sites future growth. I asked for VUMC409s advice about purchasing web design programs, but he suggested not wasting my money on expensive software packages like Adobe Dr

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gherrmann44

03/17/2012

Garys March Coin of the Month

This month my attention turns from Britannia to Lady Liberty in this second of three journal posts on coins displaying feminine seated national personifications. The coin I selected for this months Coin of the Month is an NGC XF-40, 1853 arrows and rays, Seated Liberty Half-Dollar. I own several coins that include the Seated Liberty motif, but I picked this coin because of its significance as a type coin. To fill the arrows slot in my type set, I could have chosen any half-dollar dated 1853 to

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gherrmann44

03/02/2012

 

<a href="http://coinsbygary.com">coinsbygary.com</a> is online

A web site where I make the rules is on line. Now I have the prerogative of putting raw coins in my sets if I so desire! Greetings all, when NGC issued eviction notices to all the PCGS world coins in the competitive registry, I had wished that I had my own web page so that I could display my coins as complete sets. Its not the loss of points that annoys me as much as its the structure of my sets where one coin description is dependent on another. When I wrote of my dilemma in a post, I got a

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gherrmann44

02/22/2012

Addendum to my Coin of the Month

Britannia and the Falkland Islands Nations that commemorate events of national significance through their coins are oftentimes able inspire their citizenry. For instance, the United States through the imagery of its bicentennial coinage reminds us of our nations greatness (dollar), its permanence and values(half dollar), and its struggle for freedom and liberty (quarter). The two-dollar bill (a favorite of mine) inspired us with a portrait of the signing of the Declaration of Independence (I s

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gherrmann44

02/09/2012

Garys February Coin of the Month

Februarys coin of the month is a beautifully conserved, chocolate-brown, NCS/NGC, 1858/6 AU-55 Great Britain halfpenny. This month I am beginning a three-part series of articles examining the coins of three nations with seated, feminine national personifications. A British halfpenny from my collection is the first coin in this series because I believe the Seated Liberty coinage of the United States uses as its model the Seated Britannia coinage of Great Britain. Subsequently, the South Americ

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gherrmann44

02/01/2012

 

Well What Do I Do Now?

I know I'm not crossing over my PCGS world coins. If there's anything I cannot stand is changing the rules in the middle of the game. It's like if I can't win, let's change the rules until I win. All along, we've been told that our PCGS coins are welcome in the NGC registry, but now I'm treated as a 2nd class citizen because I have PCGS coins in an NGC registry. Granted, it is an NGC registry, and I've always felt a set populated with more than 50 % NGC coins should have some kind of preferent

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gherrmann44

01/19/2012

Edging Ever so Closer

This past week I made an upgrade to "Gary's Golden Wilhelmina Guldens" that brings me ever so closer to the ultimate goal for this set. About three years ago, I started an 11-coin set of Netherlands Wilhelmina 10 Guldens. Before the end of 2009, I completed my set of small European gold coins with six previously certified coins and five raw coins submitted to NGC for certification. My original set containing six coins grading at MS-63 and 64, and five coins grading at MS-65 and higher, won t

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gherrmann44

01/14/2012

 

A different perspective on the annual awards

A diversity of winners from year to year is good for Collector's Society. I've given this matter some thought, and from year to year I've noticed certain traits to the sets that are awarded. Naturally, every year there are those dream sets that make most people, including myself, drool over. Even the journal awards seem to follow certain trends. This causes me to conclude, and this is only my opinion, that the judges get together before the contest to determine the criteria by which they will

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gherrmann44

01/07/2012

 

Congratulations!

Congratulations are in order for all this year's award winners. Congratulations to this year's award winners, but in particular, to three award winners with whom I have conversed with in the past and whom I consider friends within Collectors Society. I am a far better collector for knowing each of the following three persons. A little over two years ago, because I was impressed with his writing ability, I asked Revenant to evaluate a set I was working on. Thankfully, he was very gracious and

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gherrmann44

01/06/2012