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AndreBizzle's Blog

29 Dec 2021

New to Numismatics

Collecting Tips | AndreBizzle

Hello All,


I'm new here and not quite sure where to begin.


My father was an avid numismatist for over sixty years. He unfortunately passed away this week after fighting the good fight for so many years. He was a wonderful, selfless man that will truly be missed by everyone who knew him. Always had a smile on his face despite all the pain and suffering, always willing to help anyone with anything, but I digress.


After my father's passing, his collection was passed down to me. In honor of my father, I want to learn all I can about numismatics. I want to curate his collection and can continue to add to it.


There's just one problem. I know next to nothing about any of this. I was hoping I might be able to find some guidance here. Being that nothing is really organized, my immediate thought is to get the collection organized, cataloged, categorized, etc..


So my first question would be: Is that in fact the right place to start? If so, what would be path of least resistance to accomplish these tasks (keeping in my mind that I'm 99.9% new to all of this)? I know that there is software available, but which one choose, if any? Will an Excel spreadsheet do the trick? What kinds of information should be included in the column headers?


My biggest question is, "Where the heck do I even start,"? I realize that there are numerous resources available through the ANA, and that numismatics requires life-long learning, but if anyone has suggestions for specific resources that would get me up speed quickly that would be extremely helpful.It's a bit daunting, there are so many resources available that it makes my head spin a bit.


If my father were still with us, I'd have my numismatics mentor. Sadly, that was not God's plan. But, everything happens for a reason.


I know this is asking a lot, but with it being the holidays and all, I thought perhaps someone could find it in their heart to help a lost man find his way, in honor of his father. Someone willing to take me under their wing, fill the void my father left, and get me started. Someone that wouldn't mind mentoring me a bit or pointing me in the right direction. I promise, I learn quickly.


I'll take whatever help I can get. Please, if you have any suggestions, next best steps, or any advice...anything, I would love to hear from you.


Thank you in advance and God Bless.

Comments

Blue skies

Level 1

I enjoyed reading this. My father died in January 2022, and I inherited a suitcase full of blue coin folders, tubes of pennies and paper envelopes of generally low grade coins. My father started collecting in the 1950’s. He worked as a night clerk in a rural motel in Georgia and would sort through change when it was quiet. Other than some proof sets he bought directly from the mint I doubt he ever bought a coin in his life, at least judging from his collection. Along with about 75 1943 steel cents there are a few gems though very few high grade coins. But that doesn’t matter- I remember watching him when I was a kid, and had forgotten about the collection for years. I burst into tears when I received the suitcase. I am happy to retrace his steps as I start to catalogue this somewhat disorganized and random collection. I joined the ANA yesterday, am amazed at this community and am looking forward to being part of it. Now I have to figure out what to do with all those steel pennies! And how to update my name on the blog! …….Kevin Clifford

Mike

Level 7

I told you you would get help. Those people are the tops. They know what there talking about. When I was going through a bad time. They all offered there help. You see what happens we don't just become friends on the site. But real friends who care.

coinsbygary

Level 5

First, let me say that I am sorry for your loss. Cataloging your collection according to the Redbook is a good idea. Another thing I found helpful when I didn't know the scope of everything I had was a checklist. You can buy a book that lists all the US coins with checkboxes to know which coins in the series you have and, more importantly, what you don't have. You could essentially do the same with the Redbook. Go ahead and mark that book up with your notes. I do it in mine. When you determine what you have, you can add coins in the series you want to collect that are within your budget. When you have settled on a series, buy a book on that series. Finally, ask lots of questions here. There is a wealth of knowledge here. If you live in a place where there is an active coin club, look into joining that club. The same goes for a brick-and-mortar dealer in your area. Find one you can trust, and you will have a friend to help you with your newfound hobby! Welcome to the ANA and the best hobby in the world!

I posted a blog for new people a little bit ago, and it should help you get around the website. Click on my profile, then click on my blog, then above it, click on CoinCollector7777's blog, then scroll down, and you should find it. Welcome!

Long Beard

Level 5

Your first question is the correct one. However, the very first thing to consider is that coin collecting evolves over time. In other words, despite having a large lot appear at once, start small and go slow. Work by denomination followed by series within. I use a basic spread sheet with headings for the coin name, grade, who it was acquired from, the date of purchase and the cost. (1921 Peace Dollar/ AU50/Joe Smith- Boston, MA, 1/2/22 and $225). Storage options, aside from encapsulated third party, include 2x2 cardboard flips (I prefer the adhesive type over staple), Air-tite round capsules of albums like Whitman and Dansco. As for graded, there are plastic boxes which hold 20.

CheerioCoins

Level 5

Welcome to the ANA website. You can learn lots from informational blogs here. There are lots of people here who can help you on your numismatic journey! I hope you can start your coin collection good! It’s great you are carrying on your fathers legacy. Best of luck!

Kepi

Level 6

Welcome to a wonderful site! Lots of great people and endless information here! Just enjoy and have fun! ; )

Mike

Level 7

You have found your way to the right place. All the active people will help you with any question you have. The ANA is a place of learning!! Welcome!!

"SUN"

Level 6

Welcome. Collect what interest you. Also, have a good numismatic library

It's Mokie

Level 6

I am so sorry to hear of the passing of your Father. My Mom passed recently as well so I know how difficult that can be. You have taken on a wonderful but Herculean task. Along with purchasing a Red Book and asking all of us any questions you have, maybe let us know where you live (in general) so we can direct you to coin clubs or coin dealers in your area that might be of assistance. But, by all means, make sure you hit us up with any questions. We have several very very learned folks on this site that are also more than willing to help a neophyte. After all, we all started that way.

thatcoinguy

Level 5

Wow! You live really close to the mint!

AndreBizzle

Level 3

Man, I cannot get over how great this community is!...and I've only been here for 24 hours!!! Thanks Mokie, that's a fantastic suggestion. I live in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. Close to pretty much everything in that area...West Chester (PA not NY), Lancaster, King of Prussia, Camden, Wilmington (DE) etc..

Golfer

Level 5

Welcome to the ANA blog. Many tips can be found on coin collecting. Since your kerping your collection, just read and learn. Take it slow and you will do well.

I. R. Bama

Level 5

I'm so glad you are here! We all enter the hobby at different points. I think you will find your father's collection to be a great starting place to dive in. Coin conservation is really important but your father may have given a lot of attention to it already. As far as the individual coins themselves, I developed a model to study them. It's an acronym: AHEM. Art, history, economics and metallurgy. If someone follows you, follow them back and you will be able to message individually. That is a great help and the way we become friends too. Lastly, I am so sorry to learn of the loss of your father. My dad died 9 years ago this week. I don't think I've gotten over it. God bless you and your family!

AndreBizzle

Level 3

I LOVE that acronym, AHEM. That sounds like a great way to approach this!

Longstrider

Level 6

Well I'm happy to have you here. I'm very sorry on the passing of you dad. May he rest in peace. There are a toon of folks here that would love to help you. Thatcoinguy is right. I too recommend a Redbook. They come out every year and the 2022's are out. See if there is a coin store near you. Visit them if available. List some coins and specific questions. I would go slow so as not to get overwhelmed and discouraged. If someone follows you you might consider following them back. That way you can directly communicate with each other. Try to have fun as well. Thanks.

AC coin$

Level 6

In Numismatics let yourself Go by your heart and the history of each coin . Never give up . My condolences . Welcome !!!

thatcoinguy

Level 5

Welcome! First, you would want to get a coin reference book (I suggest the Red Book). Next, try to post pictures about the coins you inherited and ask us specific questions we can answer for you. Having an informed numismatist in person is always great, so see if you have a coin club in your area. Read the blogs, as they provide invaluable information about a range of numismatic related topics. And finally, inform yourself! Visit other websites, buy books, and absorb as much knowledge as possible from our experts here at the ANA! I, along with everyone here, am so excited to help you on your numismatic journey, and answer any questions you might have. And I extend my condolences for the passing of your father.

thatcoinguy

Level 5

No problem! You sound like a person who is really willing to learn, which is always great! I can’t wait to see your knowledge on numismatics grow!

AndreBizzle

Level 3

You guys are the best! I am absolutely amazed with the outpouring of support for a complete stranger that knows very little. Thank you for all the advice, I am forever indebted! I am seriously at a loss for words. I currently have the 2021 Red Book, sounds like I need to take a run over to the bookstore and grab the 2022 version. Thank you again for the kind words and support. I'm a complete newbie and you all have made me incredibly excited to get started on this journey!

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