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    Learning the Ropes

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  1. Revenant, very sorry to hear the latest, I know from experience little ones are very resilent and usually much tougher than their parents and I pray for Samuel's speedy recovery. All my best wishes.
  2. My best wishes for the happiest outcome for you both.
  3. Thankyou all for your comments. Jack - fortunately I tend to buy at auction so my invoice will be from the sale of the named collection and as you say the recorded history of the coin will tend to start there. As I collect world coins and they are almost always in the raw state, and with Third Party Grading only just starting to gain acceptance here in Europe, it is more difficult to prove a provenance, for example the Charles I halfcrown I mentioned has a provenance that goes back about 150 years and this information certainly impacts its value so deposito's experience that NGC wouldn't just except the provenance given in the auction catalogue and that further research was required to support this was interesting - and sometimes justified! Fortunately I do have a lot of catalogues and spend much time tracking the history of individual coins so it would not surprise me if some collectors have extensive databases for their specialist area of interest and it would be a shame for this vital information to disappear, those collectors who are able to turn this knowledge into books and articles are invaluable to this 'hobby' of ours and deserve the greatest respect for their efforts. Revenant, thankyou for the details of the Collection Manager, I haven't used this although I do already have all - well most of - the details on a spreadsheet, my current situation is the pictures are mainly restricted to my Napoleon and British sixpence collections which means the rest of the world remains to be done, unfortunately British, Spanish and French colonies covered a large portion of the globe meaning that this is not going to be quick. The bigger issue for me is that most invoices are on paper only and these will need to be scanned and linked to the spreadsheet entries. The same applies to the appropriate lot description in an auction catalogue as most of these are hard copy only (showing my age now) which I also need to incorporate somehow. I hadn't considered that the TPG's may have liability concerns given they do, sometimes, add provenance to the label, and I would expect them to charge a 'low' fee for this electronic only listing, although this whole process would probably be more efficient if the auction houses did it en mass for each sale. As individual collectors we may just have to search the auction archives each time we make a new purchase however as I understand it the reach of the legislation, which was proposed to prevent the illegal trade in ancient artefacts, is actually much wider and is already causing issues for dealers (provenance, export permits etc) and people trying to sell items at auction, particularly inherited collections - hence my goal for 2019. As my daughter has already decided that the collection is hers when I am no longer around (her brother did not get any say in this) the greatest challenge of all will be getting her to help!
  4. Just seen the article with the melted slab pictures - NGC have done a fantastic job, you must be thrilled!
  5. I feel you pain, packages do seem to arrive to end - hope it makes it. The routes things seem to take never cease to amaze me but then I am not some expensive logistics computer. I buy quite a few things from US auctions but how many times does it have to go from the west coast to the east coast and back again before making it to New York and then finally to Europe where it will eventually make it to the UK. Sometimes things go around the globe the other way and stop off in Hong Kong or Singapore (and sometimes Kuwait?). I had an auction win from Germany arrive today and it had been to Switzerland, France, Belgium, Holland and several airports in the UK before getting here! Anyone worked out how to claim air-miles for their parcels?
  6. Great idea! He will remember that forever. I bought my kids some kilo bulk lots of world coins at auction and a world map to go on the wall. They spent many many hours trying to match coins to the countries, and sticking them on the map, it was a great way for them to learn where each country was although places like 'Sarawak' caused some confusion as they no longer exist. Unlike your son it was the ones with animals on or funny shapes that they were most interested in and it also meant that they got some funny looks on holidays when they wanted to know why it wasn't Pesetas in Spain, Lira in Italy and Marks in Germany - however this did then prompt them to start looking for the different countries on the euros. They still go through their change trying to put date sets together and looking for the special 50 pence pieces we have here in the UK so I guess something sank in over the years!
  7. I have a number of world coins from renowned collections and it is a privilege to be their current custodian however most of these are raw - so how do I prove it? I do have the original invoice which demonstrates when and where I bought the coin but do people really provide a copy of this should they sell the coin to keep the provenance intact? Apart from 'flagship' coins where each individual is well documented it is only recently that auction catalogues have included pictures of most of the coins in a sale but then these are not always of sufficient quality to confirm a match. Graded coins include a reference number which would be an obvious way to track a coins history however not all auction houses include this is in the description or include a picture of the holder in addition to that of just the coin. Provenance included on the label of graded coins is very useful in this regard and I have some coins that highlight their pedigree this way (D. Moore Collection, E.P. Newman etc) however there is limited space on the label so for coins such as a very rare English Charles I halfcrown* which appeared at auction a few weeks ago, this is not the solution either as it would not be possible to include all this information on the holder, it is also impractical that labels will be updated each time a coin changes hands anyway. However I think it would be useful for this information to be added to the TPG databases and be available when looking up a certificate number. The grading company could verify the invoice etc, thereby protecting the personal details of the owner and thus attach valuable provenance to an individual coin (already done as part of adding provenance to a label?). In addition it would also be possible to attribute other important information associated with a coin such as whether it was used as a plate coin in reference texts etc, the wonders of modern technology means that this information could easily be updated. With new legislation, such as the German Cultural Assets Protection Act, starting to appear across the globe restricting the sale/export and/or ownership of such things as coins I consider a documented, unbroken, provenance critically important for current and future collectors and as such my major goal for 2019 is to try and sort out all my invoices, photograph/scan of all my coins and generate an electronic record of everything in a format such that my family can easily find things should I not be able to! *ex Mrs Street Collection, ex Hon. Robert Marsham Collection, ex Hyman Montagu Collection, ex J. G. Murdoch Collection, ex Virgil M Brand Collection, ex Richard Cyril Lockett Collection, ex John G Brooker Collection - abbreviated list!, I expect I am not the only one who views coins like this at auctions even though their value means they are never going to form part of my collection but it is nice, just the once, to have held them in my hand.
  8. Given the very low populations of some issues I find the same applies to many world coins, particularly minors, and not just for high grade examples - although no where near to the extent it does with ancients! This is an area I have always read lots about but find the complexity and diversity a bit overwhelming so never actually started anything serious - and some of the prices for top examples scare me I did pick up another couple of coins for empty slots at the Goldberg sale last night - both the first graded examples for raw sets which I was trying not to do, one was the only known MS example of that particular issue which is my excuse. As usual I was outbid on a couple of others and it wouldn't surprise me if they now appear in a Registry Set at some point. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Glenn Onishi at Goldberg for fantastic customer service when the PC gremlins appeared during the on-line live bidding.
  9. Congratulations on your retirement! As friends who have already reached that point would say 'retirement is not giving up work, it is just that you can now refuse to do all the rubbish and just concentrate on the interesting bits!' As a result they are all now busier than ever as they only have to do the fun bits. There are a few coin collectors amongst them, one of whom is currently writing a book on Charles I during the English Civil War (he has a very impressive collection of coins, medals and artefacts of the period) and another is finally tracking down and recording all the minor die varieties of Victorian pennies. Personally I can't wait, although I expect my wife has a few jobs around the house which will then have to get done as I will have run out of excuses
  10. We have the elongated penny machines here in the UK but they are very few and far between, they seem much more common in the US. I wish you and your wife well and trust everything goes according to plan, best wishes.
  11. A bit of an update: I have only bought two coins so far - but bid on many! Although both of these fill empty slots with the top graded examples I have so far successfully managed to not buy a coin which starts a new graded set so many of my raw sets are still that way, although the Goldberg sale later today may change that. It hasn't helped that Heritage have started adding coins to their website for the April 30th sale and there are a couple there that I have been after for a while - one of which, due to a lack of funds, I was outbid on at a UK auction last year so part of me is now trying to save up to have another go as the UK appearance was more than 10 years since the last time it showed itself. I hope everyone got at least some of the coins they were after.
  12. jgenn, glad to hear that the envelope was found as it is nice to have all extras related to the history of a coin. I have a sixpence from the Eric P. Newman collection, also from Heritage, but there was never any mention of an envelope
  13. Revenant I sympathise with your situation, my wife gave up buying coins decades ago and decided that coin books, as coin928 has suggested, was a safer bet (though from a provided list). Even these are getting expensive so a gift now tends to be a crate of world beers, with the surprise element being what oddities has she managed to find this time. As I still buy the book I can enjoy both at the same time!
  14. I was delighted, but very surprised, to see that my Napoleon typeset received a Best Classic Set Award as announced by NGC this week. This came as a bit of a shock as the set is not yet complete, although it is not far off. I do have a raw coin for one of the vacant slots which I should really get around to sending to NGC, particularly now that the gaps stand out more than ever! Congratulations to all the Award winners, the many great sets in the Registry highlight the diversity and global nature of coin collecting, however it just shows how little I know about anything, and that there is so much left to discover. [my dissertation was long long ago, although I do have two on my desk at the moment that I am the examiner for!]
  15. Thankyou both for the detailed history of Mansfeld, it is this historical context that I find fascinating as coins, with their changing design and production not only highlight the critical issues of the day but are sometimes the only tangible thing left to show that a person or place ever existed.