This is my second blog for reviews of numismatic books. Today I will be reviewing “United States Coinage A Study By Type,” by Ron Guth and Jeff Garrett. This is a large coffee-table like book.
The introduction talks about a brief history of United States coinage and why some of the major design elements were chosen. It also describes how types are determined. This book lists types for one of three reasons: a legally mandated change to the coin, a visible change to the coin, or a change in the technological process to create the coin. The authors also decided to include Gobrecht dollars and $4 Stellas as types. It also gives information on why collecting by type is so popular.
Each type of coin has its own page with a large photo, the date, mintage information, historic retail values, a description, rarity information, auction information, current retail values, designer information, and statistics (size, weight, and composition).
The main denominations described are: half cent, large cent, small cent, two-cent piece, three-cent piece, half dime, five-cent piece, ten-cent piece, twenty-cent piece, quarter dollar, half dollar, dollar, gold dollar, quarter eagle, $3 gold piece, $4 gold piece, half eagle, eagle, and double eagle.
Here are some of my favorite types:
· The Classic Head Half Cent and Large Cent - I like it because it is very old and has a beautiful picture of lady liberty on the obverse.
· The Flying Eagle Cent - I like it because the design of the eagle on the obverse is really cool.
· The Wheat Cent - I like it because that is how I started collecting coins.
· The Indian Head Nickel - I like it because of the design.
· All Barber coins – the nickel, the dime and the quarter. I like them because of the obverse design.
· The Capped Bust Half Dollar - I like it because it is very old, big, silver, and has an awesome design. The book describes three types of Capped Bust Halves – lettered edge, reeded edge 50 cents and reeded edge half dol.
· The Morgan Dollar - I like it because it is big, silver, beautiful, and was minted in Carson City.
At the end of the book, a photo of the obverse of each coin is shown in actual size. This is a great way to see all the coins together. The appendix shows certified populations by type and auction records by type.
I think this is a very useful and interesting book.