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Is it time to jettison the books and catalogs?

RYKRYK Posts: 35,785 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited March 26, 2024 3:00PM in U.S. Coin Forum

I probably have a complete set (or nearly) of ANR catalogs. They were so well done, back in the day, with interesting numismatic morsels from QDB and JK, curated collections, and state-of-the-art photography. Each catalog was a numismatic treasure. Now, who needs them!?

Same with the coin tomes, like The Fantastic 1804 Dollar, Tribute Edition, by Eric P Newman and Kenneth E Bressett. It just showed up on my doorstep one day, courtesy of Heritage. And old Winter branch mint gold books, many of QDB’s references and The Richmond Collection (I bet hardly anyone remember’s this one, it was like the Hansen collection before Hansen), and so on and so forth. Does anyone still keep this stuff. I tried selling on the BST and some on eBay last year with little success after the few, more interesting items were taken.

I think I am going to drop one volume each day into the recycling (paperbacks) or trash (hardbacks) until it is all gone…

starting with the Virgil Brand catalog (B&M, 1984), today. :(

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Comments

  • CatbertCatbert Posts: 6,585 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Do you think the ANA would have interest?

    "Got a flaming heart, can't get my fill"
  • mattnissmattniss Posts: 577 ✭✭✭✭

    Surely a library somewhere would accept them? I can't imagine people wouldn't want to read them if they were available. This is especially so if they were digitized for online usage somehow. Would certainly be possible but undoubtedly a labor of love for anyone involved.

  • 291fifth291fifth Posts: 23,930 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @mattniss said:
    Surely a library somewhere would accept them? I can't imagine people wouldn't want to read them if they were available. This is especially so if they were digitized for online usage somehow. Would certainly be possible but undoubtedly a labor of love for anyone involved.

    Auction catalogs would be of no interest to libraries themselves but may be salable (very cheaply) at freinds of the library sales. The same could be said of most of the numismatic books. Back in the early 1990s I had a group of books on ancient Roman coins that I attempted to give to my local library. They had no interest - too specialized and they would take up too much shelf space. I eventually gave them to the main branch of the Detroit Public Library. They accepted them reluctantly. I wonder what they actually did with them. (This happened in the days before eBay existed.)

    All glory is fleeting.
  • pruebaspruebas Posts: 4,318 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Like @RYK, I have catalogs going back 25 years, and in some cases even further (ie. Stacks to the 1960s).

    Apart from the named sales, I’m going to do the same thing. Too much time and effort to do anything else with them.

  • skier07skier07 Posts: 3,676 ✭✭✭✭✭

    If I buy a coin of significance I will keep the catalog. Otherwise catalogs eventually wind up in the garbage.

  • RYKRYK Posts: 35,785 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 26, 2024 3:51PM

    I could not part with Virgil Brand on the first day, so I tossed The Montgomery Collection sale, which had TWO 1854-D $3's, one of which sold for over $70,000 in the 90's.

    I kept the Brand a little longer, so I could read about the Cincinnati Mining $10 one more time.

  • Project NumismaticsProject Numismatics Posts: 1,338 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK - the ANA library might be interested if you are willing to donate. If they aren’t, they will try to sell them during their Summer Seminar library sales.

  • RYKRYK Posts: 35,785 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Project Numismatics said:
    @RYK - the ANA library might be interested if you are willing to donate. If they aren’t, they will try to sell them during their Summer Seminar library sales.

    I would have no problem with donating them to the ANA, if they had a use for them. I would be happy to ship them at my expense. Do you know who to contact about that?

  • pruebaspruebas Posts: 4,318 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 26, 2024 4:56PM

    Shipping auction catalogs can get real expensive real fast. Those things are heavy!

    But putting them into the recycle bin is risky because of who can see them and make assumptions about what might be in the house.

    I’m all for saving our resources and all, but to me the safest option is in the trash. And asking the auction houses not to send them anymore.

  • RLSnapperRLSnapper Posts: 515 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I use certain auction catalogues as references for my Late Date Large Cent set. Ted Nafzger, Robbie Brown, JR Frankenfeld, Steve Ellsworth and others. I have 3 coins from the Nafzger sale that are beautifully plated and described.
    I can see how courtesy copies could pile up....I know there are dealers of coin catalogues. A reputable dealer is Bryce Brown. I bought a couple of catalogues from him. Really good guy who I am sure would be happy to make a deal for your unwanted copies.
    Seeing books in the trash breaks my heart.
    https://brycebooks.squarespace.com/

  • retirednowretirednow Posts: 468 ✭✭✭✭✭

    You may contact the Newman Portal folks as they have a few holes in their catalog listings mailto:NNPCurator@wustl.edu

  • davewesendavewesen Posts: 5,828 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I was going to say that most of these things can be found on the internet, but that is not true. It is too bad that a coin related non-profit couldn't scan the catalogs and put on the internet for the world to be able to see anytime in the future..

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,819 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @mattniss said:
    Surely a library somewhere would accept them? I can't imagine people wouldn't want to read them if they were available. This is especially so if they were digitized for online usage somehow. Would certainly be possible but undoubtedly a labor of love for anyone involved.

    Libraries don't stockpile paper anymore. I'm also not sure you can legally digitize them without permission.

  • savitalesavitale Posts: 1,406 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said:

    I fancied that some day, perhaps when I was retired, I would sit outside, on my patio or deck, and read about coins. My interest in reading (the old fashioned way, with physical books) and in coins both waned.

    I had a very similar ambition. I purchased a beautiful leatherbound set of Easton Press 100 Greatest Books thinking that I would read them in retirement. It's not going to happen. I recently listed them on eBay. I do enjoy looking at them and they are very attractive on the bookshelf. But they also feel like an enormous to-do list on top of all of my more pressing to-do list items. So it is time for them to go to a new home.

  • @RYK said:

    I fancied that some day, perhaps when I was retired, I would sit outside, on my patio or deck, and read about coins. My interest in reading (the old fashioned way, with physical books) and in coins both waned.

    One thing that I find very sad, and I have noticed it on this forum, is that the “romance” of coins garners very little interest. People do not talk about the origin of the Dahlonega Mint or “the golf shoe coin”. Scanning the thread titles, discussions are about grading, grading companies, stickering, companies that grade and sticker, eBay dust ups, post office guffaws, dealers/collectors getting ripped off, etc. It is like the magic and wonder are gone. :'(

    I used to think that too. The grizzled old man, sitting porch side at my inevitable log cabin, fire pit going, black Labrador at my feet, enjoying a Gin and Tonic - two wedges of lime, and reading the complete numismatic works of greatness. But, reality quickly set in: the time to read is NOW! Therefore, I can better apply that knowledge to my pursuits in the present, while I’m middling through the autumn of my life. Believe me though, I get you!

    And I feel that you are quite right about coin “romance” missing. However, I’ve never really contributed too much to that so perhaps I’m just a part of the problem. I’ll never be a numismatic scholar. I’m a public school Civics teacher and my studies are bound to enhancing and improving that calling. There is always need for refinement and continuing education. There just isn’t time left in the day at the moment, nor in the foreseeable future. If I were a rich man…..

    All other pursuits currently on hold while I have fun completing my Dansco 7070.

  • MaywoodMaywood Posts: 1,884 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said: One thing that I find very sad, and I have noticed it on this forum, is that the “romance” of coins garners very little interest. People do not talk about the origin of the Dahlonega Mint or “the golf shoe coin”. Scanning the thread titles, discussions are about grading, grading companies, stickering, companies that grade and sticker, eBay dust ups, post office guffaws, dealers/collectors getting ripped off, etc. It is like the magic and wonder are gone.

    This is true, and the blame for it all IMHO lies mainly with PCGS and the heavy-handed approach taken over the years. That intensified maybe 10 years ago. I understand all the ownership the company has been through and personnel changes, but everyone that made this place fun, interesting and engaging has either been banned or left of their own accord. That has led to a minimization of what can be intelligently discussed. The premier coin forum has become what @RYK described so eloquently. Members can't really speak their mind anymore and rarely does a topic take the "deep dive" that was so common in the past, long and engaging threads that actually discussed interesting topics. They sometimes caused fights and arguments, but that's the life-blood of a place like this, passionate discourse.

    Sorry to get off-topic.........................I have a lot of books and catalogues, tried to sell them at the BST with little interest and hardly a counter-offer on prices. As we each move towards retirement and a lessening interest in the Hobby the books just sit. Who actually reads books anymore, everyone has their face stuck looking at a 2x4 inch screen!! :)

  • BLUEJAYWAYBLUEJAYWAY Posts: 8,006 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Recently went to a well respected book dealer. Kindly older gentleman .Had some old non coin books to sell. Early 1900's. Not even a offer. Would not even take for free. Said they would just sit there with all the other books. He noted that readership is down for hard copy books. Even going to the local library on a weekly basis it looks like a ghost town.

    Successful transactions:Tookybandit. "Everyone is equal, some are more equal than others".
  • TwoSides2aCoinTwoSides2aCoin Posts: 43,827 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Drop the occasional catalogue off in the restroom at a rest stop along the Interstate. A public service.

  • BStrauss3BStrauss3 Posts: 3,142 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @mattniss said:
    Surely a library somewhere would accept them? I can't imagine people wouldn't want to read them if they were available. This is especially so if they were digitized for online usage somehow. Would certainly be possible but undoubtedly a labor of love for anyone involved.

    The problem with digitizing is they are still in copyright and you can't make them available without permission. Tracking down the copyright owner can be difficult. Or they may have delusions about someday making them available for a fee.

    You can also check the NNP and see if the catalogs you have are among the ones they've digitized. If not, if you have unusual material, there might be a slight interest there.

    -----Burton
    ANA 50 year/Life Member (now "Emeritus")
  • tommy44tommy44 Posts: 2,192 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I take a bag full to my local monthly coin show and leave them on the outside table with the show fliers etc. They are usually gone by the time I leave the show.

    it's crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsy in snide

  • BLUEJAYWAYBLUEJAYWAY Posts: 8,006 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @tommy44 said:
    I take a bag full to my local monthly coin show and leave them on the outside table with the show fliers etc. They are usually gone by the time I leave the show.

    Sounds like a beneficial gesture.

    Successful transactions:Tookybandit. "Everyone is equal, some are more equal than others".
  • Mr_SpudMr_Spud Posts: 4,426 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I still have most of my coin books, but I’ve donated over 100 books to the local library in an attempt to declutter my house.

    Mr_Spud

  • Pnies20Pnies20 Posts: 2,053 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @tommy44 said:
    I take a bag full to my local monthly coin show and leave them on the outside table with the show fliers etc. They are usually gone by the time I leave the show.

    This is a great idea!

    BHNC #248 … 108 and counting.

  • ProofCollectionProofCollection Posts: 5,377 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I couldn't believe the box of catalogs Stacks sent me a few weeks ago. It must have cost them well over $100 in printing and shipping. Sad because I don't use them at all. Straight to the recycle bin. They should ask you to opt out and give you a $100 credit toward buyer's fees instead.

  • yspsalesyspsales Posts: 2,185 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Y'all could send some to me. I would take some off your hands.

    Now we need a thread ranking the top 20 auction catalogs

    BST: KindaNewish (3/21/21), WQuarterFreddie (3/30/21), Meltdown (4/6/21), DBSTrader2 (5/5/21) AKA- unclemonkey on Blow Out

  • ProofmorganProofmorgan Posts: 715 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Something about me just still loves having the catalog. I typically keep the ones with significant coins I have purchased. I've also purchased many from Bryce Brown for research and provenance/pedigree tracking purposes.

    How about reaching out to Bryce Brown? He sells at reasonable prices so he'd make a small profit and the catalogs would get back into collector hands. I'm sure he'd pay the shipping.

    Collector of Original Early Gold with beginnings in Proof Morgan collecting.
  • MaywoodMaywood Posts: 1,884 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said: Today’s contribution was easy- Modern Commemorative Coins - “Invest Today, Profit Tomorrow”

    Am I the only one who sees the humor in this, mocking a book which you were foolish enough to buy. Now that’s funny!! 😂😂😭

  • RYKRYK Posts: 35,785 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Maywood said:
    @RYK said: Today’s contribution was easy- Modern Commemorative Coins - “Invest Today, Profit Tomorrow”

    Am I the only one who sees the humor in this, mocking a book which you were foolish enough to buy. Now that’s funny!! 😂😂😭

    If I recall, a forum number published it. It was not an area of interest, but I wanted to support him. If supporting fellow forum members is foolish, then I am a fool.

  • habaracahabaraca Posts: 1,964 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Dang Robert,,,,,,

    You doing a nice thing and some fools just got to be negative and criticize you anyway. What is this world coming to? just a bunch of Karens.................

  • ColonialcoinColonialcoin Posts: 624 ✭✭✭✭

    I have parted with most all of my auction catalogs either by giving them to my local coin dealer, selling, or tossing them in the trash. My Boyd/Ford sale catalogs are still used by me almost daily. I have sold most of my reference books as I have read and used them so much that they are of no more use to me. I ended up selling most of those to true collectors of a given series while giving away the general ones to my coin dealer.

    I first started selling catalogs by the box (4-5 catalogs) on EBay. That quickly became a pain dealing with buyers that I didn’t know so I stopped. The reference books that I have sold so far went one at a time to people I know which needed a particular book for their library. No complaining, no whining, just gratitude.

  • ConnecticoinConnecticoin Posts: 12,501 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 27, 2024 9:33AM

    @RYK said:

    One thing that I find very sad, and I have noticed it on this forum, is that the “romance” of coins garners very little interest. People do not talk about the origin of the Dahlonega Mint or “the golf shoe coin”. Scanning the thread titles, discussions are about grading, grading companies, stickering, companies that grade and sticker, eBay dust ups, post office guffaws, dealers/collectors getting ripped off, etc. It is like the magic and wonder are gone. :'(

    I agree with you RYK, which is one reason I have not been on these boards as much recently. But the good stuff is still there, and I will endeavor to only reply to the good stuff and perhaps start some good threads too. I do also like the fun stuff like "guess the grade" and the recent "first and last" thread. But I do wish the sticker discussions had their own forum.

  • MaywoodMaywood Posts: 1,884 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said: If supporting fellow forum members is foolish, then I am a fool.

    I just made a joke, not interested in a fight.......................but I will retort. The joke is that you mocked the book, not anything to do with what you collect or any forum members. The fact that you bought it to support a forum member, don't collect those items and still felt the need to mock the book says more than I could ever say. I think in a roundabout way you are calling yourself a fool, though I would never do that, especially here.

  • seatedlib3991seatedlib3991 Posts: 493 ✭✭✭✭

    I have many numismatic books and would love to donate to a library but no such luck. Our local library will not take any further donations. Say they have three facilities full and won't take in more.
    My daughter is head librarian for three small libraries but her library system does not allow any outside donations.
    I will contradict whoever said libraries and hard books are dead. My daughter has told me that check outs are almost double of what they were when she started ten years ago. Know this though, most libraries have adapted to offer many other items than just books and all three of her libraries have non stop clients using their computer banks. james

  • DCWDCW Posts: 6,968 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I dunno. I am still the kind of guy that prefers a book in hand than scrolling through digitized pages online. Yes, the catalogs take up space. But there is usually valuable info to be gleaned from them, and it is laways fun for me to track provenance this way. In the field of exonumia, which is obviously alot smaller market, they become even more important.

    Dead Cat Waltz Exonumia
    "Coin collecting for outcasts..."

  • BillJonesBillJones Posts: 33,471 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I have the hardcover editions from some major sales like Eliasberg and Garrett. These special editions used to be a big deal, but I guess not any more. They have a lot of good information in them.

    The other day, I saw a coin at auction that was traced back to Garrett, I was able to look it up. I don't think that this information is on-line.

    But, no, I don't keep most modern auction catalogs unless they have information in them that you can't find elsewhere in a reference book.

    Retired dealer and avid collector of U.S. type coins, 19th century presidential campaign medalets and selected medals. In recent years I have been working on a set of British coins - at least one coin from each king or queen who issued pieces that are collectible. I am also collecting at least one coin for each Roman emperor from Julius Caesar to ... ?
  • pruebaspruebas Posts: 4,318 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @BillJones said:
    I have the hardcover editions from some major sales like Eliasberg and Garrett. These special editions used to be a big deal, but I guess not any more. They have a lot of good information in them.

    The other day, I saw a coin at auction that was traced back to Garrett, I was able to look it up. I don't think that this information is on-line.

    But, no, I don't keep most modern auction catalogs unless they have information in them that you can't find elsewhere in a reference book.

    Bill, all the Bowers & Merena Garrett catalogs have been digitized by Stacks Bowers and are online. But not all the PRs are there (or at least I have been unable to find them).

    But I agree that important sales will always have utility as physical objects and are worth saving. And there are still a lot of sales (particularly world) that have not been digitized.

    I do believe that a majority of the bulk Stacks, Heritage, ANR, and other sales can be safely tossed.

    Books are another matter entirely. I am not tossing books (yet....).

  • messydeskmessydesk Posts: 19,676 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said:

    @Project Numismatics said:
    @RYK - the ANA library might be interested if you are willing to donate. If they aren’t, they will try to sell them during their Summer Seminar library sales.

    I would have no problem with donating them to the ANA, if they had a use for them. I would be happy to ship them at my expense. Do you know who to contact about that?

    Akio Lis is the library manager as far as I know. The library (i.e., he) can be reached at library at money.org.

    These will sell easily at the library sales.

  • yspsalesyspsales Posts: 2,185 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 27, 2024 3:36PM

    Google is your friend.

    Wow what a rabbit hole I have discovered.

    Stacks & Bowers has a PDF catalog library of 1600+
    BryceBooks has auction results among other resources.

    The poor collector and wanna be historian may have found Wonderland

    BST: KindaNewish (3/21/21), WQuarterFreddie (3/30/21), Meltdown (4/6/21), DBSTrader2 (5/5/21) AKA- unclemonkey on Blow Out

  • RYKRYK Posts: 35,785 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Garbage pick up day is tomorrow.

    Say goodbye to the 3 volume hardback collectible Richmond catalogs - nice 1933 $10 on the cover!

  • retirednowretirednow Posts: 468 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @ProofCollection said:
    I couldn't believe the box of catalogs Stacks sent me a few weeks ago. It must have cost them well over $100 in printing and shipping. Sad because I don't use them at all. Straight to the recycle bin. They should ask you to opt out and give you a $100 credit toward buyer's fees

    Time for me to ask a couple to stop sending unless I request one. On line auction material is so superior.

  • DisneyFanDisneyFan Posts: 1,641 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @RYK said:
    Today’s contribution was easy-
    Modern Commemorative Coins - “Invest Today, Profit Tomorrow” :D

    I thought Jordan's discussion of what makes a coin valuable was worthwhile.

  • Project NumismaticsProject Numismatics Posts: 1,338 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @retirednow said:

    @ProofCollection said:
    I couldn't believe the box of catalogs Stacks sent me a few weeks ago. It must have cost them well over $100 in printing and shipping. Sad because I don't use them at all. Straight to the recycle bin. They should ask you to opt out and give you a $100 credit toward buyer's fees

    Time for me to ask a couple to stop sending unless I request one. On line auction material is so superior.

    I like taking notes in the margins of the physical catalog at lot viewing. I also like to keep a catalog if I make a major purchase in the sale. Other than that, I agree.

  • Pnies20Pnies20 Posts: 2,053 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 27, 2024 8:40PM

    Quick somebody drive by and save them from eternal damnation at the dump! 😩

    See if there’s anything left in that bottle of Tito’s also.

    BHNC #248 … 108 and counting.

  • Cougar1978Cougar1978 Posts: 7,603 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited March 27, 2024 9:12PM

    I have kept the last issue Krause Catologs on WPM, NBN, CSA, US Currency, North American Coins, etc. Good reference books. Kelly book on NBN, Obsoletes, CSA too. I have a lot of other books keeping too, paid good money for them. The Laibstain book on Classic Commems is a priceless reference book. I do buy a blue book every year in case if have to make a seat of pants offer (like if could not access phone).

    So Cali Area - Coins & Currency
  • TwoSides2aCoinTwoSides2aCoin Posts: 43,827 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Well , if you put them in the trash, they'll disappear in a week or the day refuse is collected. If you leave them at the dentist, garage, gym, or restrooms where you gas up (ok, maybe you charge your car) , those books and rags will be gone in a day or less. Then again, don't pay any mind to me. I'm your typical male coin geek who likes to read about coins on the throne. Hobby of Kings starts on the head.

  • messydeskmessydesk Posts: 19,676 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Pnies20 said:
    Quick somebody drive by and save them from eternal damnation at the dump! 😩

    See if there’s anything left in that bottle of Tito’s also.

  • HoledandCreativeHoledandCreative Posts: 2,753 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I donate unmarketable books, catalogs, and magazines to Goodwill. Nice books like that current entry would sell in a blink there.

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