Numismatic Blog and News Headlines for October 14, 2008


Four numismatic articles are referenced on CoinNews every Tuesday and Thursday. These articles are not authored by us, but we recommend collectors read them for their unusual or interesting content. Have you written or know of an article that should be highlighted on CoinNews? Please let us know! Here are today’s articles:

Hawaii coin ends popular state quarter program
By The Associated Press

With a big aloha to Hawaii, a new generation of coin collectors will soon shut their books on the U.S. Mint’s popular 10-year state quarter program full of fond family memories and a fun dose of history. While not terribly rare, considering about 34 billion were produced, the commemorative quarters have captured the frenzied fancy of kids and their parents as they’ve drawn extended family, tip-collecting waitresses and friendly bank tellers into the hunt.

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New coin collecting guide
By Joseph Bakes, The Star-Ledger

As the “father of the state quarters program,” David L. Ganz already has made his mark on American coin collecting. Now he has contributed a book that should be in the library of every numismatist and would make a perfect holiday gift for a beginning collector. “Guide to Coin Collecting” (HarperCollins, $19.95, paper) begins with a history of coinage — the first coins were used in the kingdom of Lydia (now Turkey) 2,800 years ago — and continues with a history of U.S. coins…

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Odd and curious money comes in many forms, styles
By Cindy Brake, COIN WORLD

Tails when not attached to an elephant or zebra were once used as money in Africa. Some may call it odd and curious, but in the Congo during the 19th century, 600 to 700 elephant tail hairs were worth one slave, writes Charles J. Opitz in An Ethnographic Study of Traditional Money. "Hair was thought to prevent disease. In Durant Lopy’s book Kingdom of Congo (1881), he described how natives drive elephants down narrow trails where the elephant would have trouble turning around. Then the natives would creep up behind the elephant, cut off the tail and run before the elephant could turn around," Opitz writes.

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Economic uncertainty
By Mark Ferguson, Coin Values

The coin market is feeling the effects of the economy more than at any other time in recent history, possibly the most since during the high inflationary days of the late 1970s and early 1980s. "High impact" events have been happening almost daily recently, deepening the current crisis and adding new factors to the mix.

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