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Spring Cleaning Brings Out Coins
May 21, 2008

This past weekend in our small town of Iola, Wis. (population 1258 or so) the state coin organization - the Numismatists of Wisconsin held their annual show.

Our Iola Old Car Show Activitiy Center (affectionally known as the "Cow Palace") was the site. It was filled with dealers from all the surrounding states, and the two day event was a success. A full range of Ancient, US and World Coins, Medals, Tokens and Paper Money was available.

In several conversations with folks who had never attended a show before, but had been buying coins from newspaper or television ads, was "To whom could I sell these coins?"

Having grown up with shows, and the ability to meet dealers who constantly buy and sell, my answer seemed rather cold - "Sell them back to the people whom you bought them from".

Well, I've never been able to sell coins back to the mint, or TV sellers, and only one public newspaper advertiser I know of buys coins.

So, these folks get to go to their first coin show, and are laid bare thinking that the dealers fair and honest offer for the stuff (often polished low-grade common silver, low grade Indians, Buffalos, Lincolns) was so low that they were cheating them, as their offers (quite fair in todays market) were sometimes pennies on the dollar based on the Club, TV or newspaper marketing purchase price.

It is a sad way to leave a hobby which could have been so much more productive as an investment tool and enjoyable.


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About the Author
George Cuhaj has been with the Krause Publications numismatic team since 1994. He is editor of the various editions of the Standard Catalog of World Coins and the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money. Prior to joining KP, Cuhaj was employed by the American Numismatic Society and Stack's Rare Coins, both of New York City. He is a Fellow in both the Royal Numismatic Society and the American Numismatic Society. He also is a life member and past board member of the International Bank Note Society. Cuhaj was elected an Allied Professional Member of the National Sculpture Society and has had his medallic work exhibited internationally.

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