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The Rest of the Story
March 03, 2011

On Feb. 2 I wrote a blog called “When fortune smiles on you.”

It was about a collector who was given the opportunity to get a 2003 American Eagle silver bullion coin for the $1 face value by a bank teller.

The lucky collector wrote me to ask if he owed the teller more than his thanks.

I responded this way:

“Congratulations on your find. The bank teller did you a favor and I hope you will remember it as one and treat him or her accordingly.

“I do not know what the bank’s policy is regarding employees collecting coins out of the till. If it prohibits such a thing, the teller was passing on good fortune to you.

“If the bank’s policy would allow the teller to exchange the coin for a dollar, then the teller had the chance to do so and declined the opportunity.

“Either way, there is no further obligation on your part.

“Enjoy your find.

The collector has written me the rest of the story.

“I went back the bank and told Brenda, the bank teller that the silver dollar she sold me was worth $28 (at the time I got it) and wanted to split the profit with her. She was surprised and very professional. She said it was worth having me as a good bank customer because I was always smiling and friendly.

“I thanked her and said I had to share my windfall or my Karma would be off. So I sold her a half share of the silver dollar for 50 cents and then split the profits. I gave her $14 cash (I still have the coin and have not sold it) . She was very happy and thanked me profusely.

“I now have a bank teller who will be taking very good care of me, looking for old coins and holding onto them for me. My luck is already getting better. I found a dime on the ground in front of the bank when I walked out.

“Thanks for your time and advice on this minor issue.”

I am sure glad the collector e-mailed me again to tell me what he had done. I also hope you enjoyed finding out what happened as much as I did.

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About the Author
David C. Harper has been a coin collector since 1963. He joined the Krause Publications editorial staff in 1978 and is currently editor of Numismatic News and World Coin News. He also edits two books annually, North American Coins & Prices and Coin Digest. He is the author of the Class of '63 column that runs each week in Numismatic News. His first bylined numismatic article appeared in the June 1971 issue of Coins Magazine and his various Krause Publications assignments included a stint as editor of the magazine 1980-1983. Harper received a bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1977. He had a double major of journalism and economics.

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