Well, the doors and closed. the janitors are sweeping up the floors and another Long Beach Coin Show is just a memory. Some changes that were so very apparent and are not (necessarily) good news. The name has been changed from the Long Beach Coin Show to the Long Beach Collectors Show. Nothing really added to the already existing Sports Collectibles and Stamps booths that were already there. Perhaps more of the former. The real scary sight was the number of booths that had clearly displayed signs that said "BOOTH UNSOLD. DO NOT SIT HERE." Booths unsold at Long Beach - that is as unbelievable as that the Sun will not rise tomorrow or there is no Easter Bunny. Already, over the past 20 years the size of the show has shrunk to under half of it original size. Maybe this should be a DEFCON 4 Alert as to the state of Numismatics today and to start thinking what needs to be done to ameliorate the situation.
On the good side, or even great side, our anonymous collector had a fabulous display of Tyrants of the Tiber, coins of the Roman Emperors and of the Popes. I was able to see Papal coins back to the 800s, coins I had only heard and read about. Also a spectacular collection of Roman gold and silver coins in the highest quality. I am eagerly awaiting September for the next installment of the collection.
From the personal side, I went to the show to drop off four ancients for grading, including a nice Cleopatra VII bronze from Egypt. I will let you know how that one turned out. I also went to unload a handful of minor ancient bronzes and some British private issue Coronation Medals. I definitely did not go to buy anything, so of course I did. I found an absolutely gorgeous silver tetradrachm from Damastian in Illyricum. When I get the coin photographed I may do a blog on it. It is from what is called the Period of Finest Art, just before Alexander III and the Hellenistic period. Unbelievable high relief and style. And the city - what can you say about the city where such a masterpiece was struck. Well, very little. Archeologists don't even know where the city was. (Yes - that was a Teaser. The full story coming soon to your local ANA Blog.)