A day at my third ANA show yields four treasures (five, if you include the complimentary PCGS luncheon Lincoln Cent) and the opportunity to meet and spend the day with fellow coin enthusiast Yankeejose (Dave).
Greetings all, Ive been to the ANAs Worlds Fair of Money three times and have found each show unique and enjoyable in different ways. This years show marks the first time I have attended a show with a fellow coin enthusiast. It also represents the first time I have personally met someone I had previously only known from an on-line forum.
Months ago upon discovering that we were both attending the show, Dave and I began to make plans to meet each other. Dave, compliments of PCGS, secured a ticket for me to attend PCGSs award luncheon as his guest. For this, I will always be grateful, for I not only heard interesting stories told by numismatists like David Bowers, but I was spared of having to buy overpriced food at the bourse floor concession stand!
Let me begin by saying that I thoroughly enjoyed Daves camaraderie and our conversation about a common passion, collecting coins! The person Dave references in his post concerning the gold buffalos was attracted to us because in his own words he overheard us having a so-called intelligent conversation. His comment flattered me a bit, but he was right in another sense in that I rarely have the opportunity to speak intelligibly with anyone about coins. Cyber-talk and chat windows are OK, but there is nothing like face-to-face contact with a fellow collector. Thank you Dave, I very much enjoyed our intelligent conversation!
Now, as alluded to in Daves post, my account of the ANA show:
I always start my day at any coin show by taking care of business, which includes a submission of coins to NGC for grading. Getting this out of the way, I began the search for my target coin. This time my hunt was focused on an obverse legend 1860-1873 half-dime for my 7070 type set. I was looking for the best coin possible with a show budget of $200 cash in my pocket. I had also promised my wife a 2013 Silver Panda and I was determined not to leave the show without it.
My first find of the show was a spectacular knock your socks off, PCGS MS-63, 1870 toner at dealer Gary Adkins booth. While I immediately fell in love with the coin, I soon realized it was well outside my budget and I thanked Gary for the opportunity to examine such a fine coin. Interestingly, Gary also had a MS-63 blast-white coin with beautiful luster and an AU-58 coin for $150 that fit well within my budget. However, it was early in the show and I wanted to see what else was out there.
It may seem odd, but I did not find another certified half-dime the rest of the show that met my criteria. As I was walking from booth to booth, I thought about how I may acquire that fabulous toner. I determined that the only way was if Gary Adkins could process my credit card at the show. Of course, using the credit card would be the ever dangerous and altogether too easy budget buster.
Finally, late in the afternoon, I met another dealer with half-dimes that after examining his coins I told him about the one I really wanted. His advice to me was to get my butt (my word) back over to Gary Adkins booth and hope the coin was still there! Thinking to myself, you know hes right, I went back to Garys booth as fast as I could and found all three candidates still there.
Examining the previous three coins, I was torn between the MS-63 blast-white coin I really liked for less money and the toner I really wanted and loved. Being somewhat practical, I was having a hard time processing paying $40 more for essentially the same coin. When I explained this dilemma to the sales associate, she said, let me see what I can do. After talking to Gary, she came back with a price $15 lower! I then asked her if she took credit cards at the show, to which she answered yes, and it was a sale.
I went with my new treasure in hand to the previous dealer and thanked him for his advice. This left me with about $200 in my pocket after buying my wifes Panda. I thought with the day a success I would take the $200 home and put it back in the bank to pay down the credit card. However, $200 in the pocket can be dangerous in the hands of an out of control coin collector at a major coin show!
After locating Dave on the bourse floor, I found myself at the booth of a dealer specializing in tokens. I thought, lets see what he has that may fit into one of my custom sets. The first token I inquired about was the anti-slavery, Am I Not a Woman token. He had one, but it looked as if it was cleaned and I passed on it. I then examined his Conder tokens without finding one suitable for my collection.
Finally, I asked him to show me all the tokens he had with seated images. Interestingly, he had a NGC graded AU-58 Hard-Times token similar to one I was following on E-Bay. I mentioned that the holder was a little beat up and he immediately offered to knock $10 off the price and I shelled out the required cash to purchase the token. When I got home, I found myself with a better-graded token for $60 less than the one offered on E-Bay!
I was also taken by a raw civil war token that I found quite interesting with a seated figure that did not appear to be Lady Liberty. Rather, it seems this token features a seated woman of Austrian or German heritage wearing a mural crown and holding a sword with an American flag as her standard. At her side is a shield bearing the arms of a double-headed eagle. Well you know the rest as I added that treasure to my days inventory.
Overall, it was a memorable day. Now for the crown jewel of the days haul, may I present my MS-63, 1870 toner half-dime.
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