U.S. Treasury Notes 1812–1865: An Excellent New History Book on a Fascinating American Era

U.S. Treasury Notes 1812–1865: An Excellent New History Book on a Fascinating American Era

Nicholas J. Bruyer has accomplished a remarkable feat with his beautifully illustrated new history book, U.S. Treasury Notes 1812–1865. Bruyer’s work brings fresh understanding to a numismatic subject that is often merely summarized, but which deserves this level of careful attention and creative exposition.

At Whitman Publishing we’ve explored just the surface of America’s Treasury Notes. Chapter 21 of Q. David Bowers’s Whitman Encyclopedia of U.S. Paper Money gives a nine-page overview of the subject. In Arthur and Ira Friedberg’s Guide Book of United States Paper Money there’s a six-page section on “Treasury Notes of the War of 1812.” The subject is summarized even more briefly with two pages in Kenneth Bressett’s popular Guide Book of United States Currency. Various other Whitman books touch lightly on Treasury Notes, often as a precursor to much more in-depth discussion of state-chartered bank notes and later money.

Now, with the assistance of Stack’s Bowers Publishing, Nicholas Bruyer has given U.S. Treasury Notes the spotlight they deserve. He presents them in a comprehensive manner, colorfully illustrated and rich in historical narrative. Bruyer explores the use of these notes not only as investment vehicles—employed by the government to stave off bankruptcy—but also as an early form of national currency. U.S. Treasury Notes 1812–1865 is more than a catalog; it’s a well-reasoned study that offers new perspectives in American financial and economic history.

It’s true that for many of these notes fewer than a half dozen specimens are known to still exist. But collectors love to learn about interesting specialties, even if the collectibles themselves live mainly in the realm of museum holdings and expensive personal collections. Pattern coins, famous federal super-rarities, private and territorial gold pieces, and other rarefied specialties come to mind. For those hobbyists who are able to actively collect such treasures, enjoy the hunt! Everyone else can immerse themselves in well-written, informative, handsomely illustrated books. Nicholas Bruyer’s U.S. Treasury Notes 1812–1865 fills that need very nicely. Because the era of U.S. Treasury Notes, from the War of 1812 through the American Civil War, is so fascinating, Bruyer’s book holds great interest for numismatists—those history buffs who study money—but also for everyone who wants a deeper understanding of our nation’s early formative decades.

Book reviewer Dennis Tucker is a life member of the American Numismatic Association, a Fellow of the Academy of Political Science, and secretary pro tem of the Rittenhouse Society. As publisher at Whitman Publishing since 2004, he has worked on hundreds of books on numismatics, banking and economic history, and other nonfiction subjects. He has written about paper money for hobby publications including his column “From the Colonel’s Desk,” and is the 2013 recipient of the Society of Paper Money Collectors’ Forrest Daniel Award for Literary Excellence. Since 2016 Tucker has served the U.S. Treasury Department as the numismatic specialist of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee.

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Unearthing the Past: Kenneth W. Rendell’s Adventures in Collecting and Forging History

Unearthing the Past: Kenneth W. Rendell’s Adventures in Collecting and Forging History

Whitman Publishing is set to release an enthralling autobiography that offers readers a glimpse into the extraordinary life of famed artifacts collector and dealer, Kenneth W. Rendell. Titled Safeguarding History: Trailblazing Adventures Inside the Worlds of Collecting and Forging History, this 328-page memoir promises to take readers on a captivating journey through Rendell’s remarkable career. Often referred to as the “Indiana Jones” of the art and collecting world, Rendell’s adventures span the globe, and his book is set to debut nationwide on October 3, 2023.

For decades, Kenneth W. Rendell has traversed the far corners of the world in pursuit of some of history’s most significant and iconic artifacts. From ancient relics to Renaissance masterpieces, Rendell’s expertise extends to rare manuscripts, historical artifacts, and autographs. He has built a reputation as a master collector and dealer, known for debunking historical forgeries and solving perplexing mysteries.

Among his notable accomplishments, Rendell played a key role in debunking the infamous Hitler Diaries in the 1980s. He also aided in resolving the Mormon Church’s “White Salamander Letter” murders and exposed the so-called Jack the Ripper diary as a fraud. With an impressive portfolio to his name, Rendell orchestrated the creation of Bill and Melinda Gates’s personal library and has appraised, bought, and sold major archives, including those of Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Frederick Law Olmsted, and General George Patton, among others. His legacy extends to a staggering collection of 12 million uncataloged artifacts from the Northern Pacific Railroad.

Rendell’s expertise in World War II history is equally lauded. He is the founder and creator of the International Museum of World War II, and his profound understanding of the Home Front, black ops, propaganda, espionage, and the experiences of ordinary soldiers and service members is unparalleled. His book World War II: Saving the Reality, published by Whitman Publishing in 2009, was hailed as a work of magnificence and importance by the OSS Society Journal.

In Safeguarding History, Rendell delves into his early days as a prodigy coin dealer during the 1950s and early 1960s. His connections and friendships with luminaries of that era, such as Q. David Bowers, Kenneth Bressett, Walter Breen, Grover Criswell, and George Fuld, led to the founding of the Rittenhouse Society and other fruitful collaborations. Readers will be treated to thrilling accounts of Rendell’s adventures while hunting down coins in the Caribbean and Europe, where he encountered and interacted with renowned dealers, collectors, and researchers.

The memoir is not just a recollection of historical artifacts and events; it also provides an intimate look into Rendell’s personal encounters with some of the world’s most prominent figures. From Malcolm Forbes and Clint Eastwood to Tom Hanks and various Supreme Court justices, Rendell’s stories are peppered with encounters with Patti Reagan, Otto Kerner, Bill Gates, John Eisenhower, Ted Kennedy, and even a cross-country meeting with Harry Truman when he was just 20 years old.

Apart from being a thrilling recounting of Rendell’s adventures in the world of collecting, Safeguarding History also serves as a personal reflection on overcoming challenges and succeeding in both business and life. Doris Kearns Goodwin, who provides the book’s foreword, praises Rendell as a master storyteller. She aptly captures the essence of the memoir, describing it as an exploration of a world filled with adventures, mysteries, sensational hoaxes, thefts, and even murders.

Beyond his pursuits in antiquities, Rendell’s zest for life extends to impressive sporting achievements. Readers will be awed by his passion for extreme sports, from ski racing in his 30s to helicopter skiing in his 40s, Hawaiian windsurfing in his 50s, and snowboarding well into his 80s.

Renowned historian Ken Burns hails Kenneth W. Rendell as one of the greatest collectors of historical artifacts, emphasizing how his work humanizes and personalizes the scope and promise of human endeavor.

With its October 2023 release date approaching, Safeguarding History is poised to become a must-read for history enthusiasts, art aficionados, and collectors eager to partake in Kenneth W. Rendell’s extraordinary journey through time and across the globe. This trailblazing autobiography promises to be a riveting tribute to the world of art, history, and the indomitable spirit of a true adventurer.

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Ten Autographed Cherrypickers’ Guides Will Be Raffled at the ANA World’s Fair of Money

Ten Autographed Cherrypickers’ Guides Will Be Raffled at the ANA World’s Fair of Money

Whitman Publishing is launching the new sixth edition, volume II, of the Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties at the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money in Pittsburgh, August 8–12, 2023. A small quantity will be sold at the show, with a limit of one copy per customer. Ten copies will be raffled to lucky winners at the Whitman Publishing booth. After the show the new volume will be available from booksellers and retailers nationwide.

“We know how frustrating it is to experience a sell-out when quantities are limited,” said Whitman Publishing’s Dawn Burbank. “We want to make sure every collector at the ANA show has an equal chance to win the new Cherrypickers’ Guide if they’re not able to buy one. We’re reserving ten copies to raffle during the show, two per day, Tuesday through Saturday.”

The raffled books are dated and individually numbered, with bookplates autographed by author Bill Fivaz. For hobbyists who can’t attend the World’s Fair of Money, the 320-page spiralbound-hardcover book can be preordered for $39.95 online, including at Delivery of preordered books will begin after the ANA show.

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“Profit of the Mind”—R.S. Yeoman on How to Run a Good Coin Show

“Profit of the Mind”—R.S. Yeoman on How to Run a Good Coin Show

Kenneth Bressett’s memoir A Penny Saved: R.S. Yeoman and His Remarkable Red Book celebrates the life of his mentor, hobby legend Richard S. Yeo (known as R.S. Yeoman), and the longevity of the Guide Book of United States Coins (the “Red Book”), first published in 1946. The 352-page hardcover volume is available from bookstores and hobby shops and online (including at This excerpt is from chapter 5, wherein Bressett shares a number of Yeoman’s writings. It was first published in the February–March 1964 issue of the Whitman Coin Supply Merchandiser. Yeoman talks about the importance of coin shows, the camaraderie they foster, and how to balance their objectives. He put these thoughts on paper 60 years ago—but they could have been written with equal wisdom today.

Whatever observation we make about the trend of coin collecting, the desire to assemble in large groups is clearly the most evident. Any week of the year, with a few obvious exceptions, there are one to ten coin shows in as many communities throughout the United States and Canada. It is a good trend, and those of us who supply the necessary accessories for arranging, protecting, and pricing coins, should encourage this kind of togetherness to the utmost.

The primary objective of the convention has been and probably will continue to be the selling and buying of coins. These gatherings are basically bourses, and most dealers derive an added benefit from making contacts with new and old customers. The sale of a coin folder or Blue Book to a novice collector is often the start of a long-term dealer-client association.

The future of the coin show or convention, however, rests on more than the bourse, and it is encouraging to see how some local club sponsors are keeping a happy balance between the dealer’s bourse, the auction, and the educational features. The show chairman is on the right track when he emphasizes exhibits and announces well in advance that handsome trophies or plaques will go to the winners. He knows that newcomers to the numismatic ranks are quickly brought into the show when the local newspaper, radio, and TV announces a free exhibit of rare coins.

We have noticed that the best attendance comes to those coin shows that have a modest or free registration, accessible display room, cordial committee members to answer questions, and a place to rest when the feet start to tire. One feature in particular has been offered by only a few conventions, and that is a special educational forum. Sometimes a panel of two to four well-informed individuals can do more to further the hobby than all the coin investment plans ever devised. There ought to be more of this kind of thing.

Our hobby can be torn apart very thoroughly if the profit motive continues to be over-emphasized to the exclusion of educational features. Competitive displays, authoritative lectures, mind-stimulating forums, and displays of available numismatic literature are convention attractions that can strengthen and perpetuate the ranks of the coin collecting fraternity. Let us have both school and marketplace, but in the right proportion. Perhaps we can plan our conventions this year with more emphasis on profit of the mind.

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Q. David Bowers’s New Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars Back Story

Q. David Bowers’s New Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars Back Story

The seventh edition of Whitman Publishing’s best-selling Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars, by Q. David Bowers, is on sale now, available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide. Here, Whitman publisher Dennis Tucker discusses the new volume in the context of the hobby’s fascination with these historic coins.

Ask collectors to rank the coins of the United States by popularity, and the famous Morgan silver dollar will always emerge at the top of the list. At Whitman Publishing we’re immersed in the coin’s universal appeal. Hobbyists buy thousands and thousands of albums, folders, and other holders to store and display their Morgan dollars. We get emails, letters, and phone calls about the hefty old coins. At coin shows, collectors, dealers, and investors are always talking about them. As we work on each year’s edition of the Guide Book of United States Coins (the “Red Book”), we hear plenty of Morgan dollar observations and market analysis from coin dealers around the country.

Meanwhile, outside the active hobby community, this is one of the “rare coins” that even non-collectors know about. They see them tossed in the air in a Hollywood Western, or for sale in a magazine ad, or nestled in Grandma’s purse. If Grandpa had a cigar box of old money, it likely included a Morgan dollar. Once this coin entered the American consciousness nearly 150 years ago, it never left. It’s a hard-money classic that sparks our imagination.

Given this widespread interest, it’s easy for a publisher to answer the question, “Why make yet another book about Morgan dollars?” In my opinion, America’s most popular coin deserves as many good books as the hobby community can read and enjoy. From observing the book market over the past 20-plus years, I believe that a rising tide lifts all ships when it comes to Morgan dollars. Because of the hobby’s longstanding interest in these coins, each new Morgan dollar book starts out with the potential of a built-in audience. If the book is fun to read and gives valuable information, it will create even more excitement around its already popular subject.

It’s kind of like the Treasury Department’s sale of its warehoused hoards of Morgan dollars in the 1960s and ’70s. Far from glutting the market and depressing prices, the mountains of coins were eagerly bought up, enthusiasm skyrocketed, and values began to rise.

Dave Bowers Creates a New Best-Seller

Q. David Bowers’s Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars, billed as “A Complete History and Price Guide,” is the popular standard reference in the field. The first edition was published almost twenty years ago, in 2004. Of course, by then Bowers was widely recognized as a subject-matter expert (not just for Morgan dollars, but across all aspects of U.S. numismatics). His published work on these coins goes back decades; a short list includes the Comprehensive U.S. Silver Dollar Encyclopedia (1992) and the hugely popular two-volume Silver Dollars and Trade Dollars of the United States: A Complete Encyclopedia (1993), not to mention numerous chapters, essays, and articles published in other books and in hobby newspapers, journals, and magazines.

The second edition of this guide book followed in 2005 with updated pricing and certified-coin population data. A new appendix studied the Morgan dollar patterns of 1878.

In 2007 Whitman published the third edition. By this time the modern renaissance in numismatic publishing was well under way. Black-and-white photographs were no longer acceptable to the hobby community; the third edition was published in full color. Again the book’s coin-by-coin pricing was updated, reflecting the active market, and certified populations captured the latest data. New research was incorporated into the manuscript—Morgan dollars are a popular field of study with frequent new discoveries. We improved the book’s layout and typography to make it as pleasantly readable as possible and easy for the reader to navigate.

The fourth edition came out in 2012. Again fully updated and revised, the new edition added an illustrated appendix of misstruck and error Morgan dollars, showcasing some truly remarkable coins including double strikes and off-centers, along with advice to guide smart purchases.

What did the hobby community think of Morgan dollars at this point? The fourth edition’s updated pricing reflected continuing enthusiasm. Many common dates had increased in retail price by 50 percent or more since the book’s first edition debuted eight years earlier, and rare dates and varieties had doubled—or more—in value. The Morgan dollar remained the King of American Coins.

Other New Morgan Dollar Books

By the time the Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars established itself as the coin’s modern standard reference, other Whitman books had joined the party. In late 2009 (with a copyright date of 2010) we published Carson City Morgan Dollars: Featuring the Coins of the GSA Hoard, by Adam Crum, Selby Ungar, and Jeff Oxman. “This book begins with the accidental discovery of gold in California in 1848,” we announced at its release. “The struggles of adventurers in the Gold Rush . . . the Nevada silver boom of the late 1800s . . . the creation of the Carson City Mint . . . these are some of the rich historical veins that Crum, Ungar, and Oxman mine in Carson City Morgan Dollars.”

Carson City Morgan Dollars was expanded and revised in a second edition released in 2011, then updated to a third edition that debuted at the American Numismatic Association’s National Money Show held in Atlanta in March 2014. Even with its specific focus on a subset of Morgan dollars, there was plenty of new material to enhance the new edition. It was updated with additional historical photographs, revisions from ongoing research, new coin values and certified-coin populations, and fresh market commentary. A fourth edition was published in 2018, expanded by 24 pages with a photographic gallery of the Carson City Mint, a review of other coins minted there, a study of Morgan dollar values in the late 1940s, and other updates and additions.

In November 2012 (copyright date of 2013) Whitman published The Private Sketchbook of George T. Morgan, America’s Silver Dollar Artist, a remarkable new book made in cooperation with the Smithsonian Institution. “Today most collectors know Morgan as the father of this legendary silver coin,” we noted. “Some specialists are familiar with his designs for commemoratives and medals, and his significant work in U.S. pattern coins. But who exactly was George T. Morgan? Karen M. Lee, a curator of the National Numismatic Collection housed at the National Museum of American History, finally answers that intriguing question. Introducing Morgan’s never-before-published personal sketchbook, and with unique access to family photographs and documents, Lee reveals the man behind the coins. The Private Sketchbook of George T. Morgan is an eye-opening immersion into what Lee calls the designer’s ‘life of art and labor.’”

This book, like the others mentioned herein, went on to win literary awards.

Next, in 2014, a new Whitman book was published, authored by Michael “Miles” Standish assisted by the research/writing team of Charles Morgan and Hubert Walker. In Morgan Dollar: America’s Love Affair With a Legendary Coin, various sections discuss the United States during the Morgan dollar era; the anatomy of the coin’s design; a market study going back to 1946; a year-by-year analysis of the series, including Philadelphia, New Orleans, Carson City, Denver, and San Francisco coins; and Morgan dollar Proofs.

An Exciting Development, and a Fast Sellout!

The fifth edition of Bowers’s Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars debuted in September 2016. It featured the requisite updated pricing, a useful new index, fresh illustrations, and exciting news of a startling discovery: information never before published, the story of the 1964 Morgan dollar. This made national headlines, stirred up the hobby’s imagination, and got people talking. (Would we expect anything less from the wonderful and legendary Morgan dollar?)

Until the fifth edition of the Guide Book was published, the hobby community was unaware that dies, hubs, and models for a 1964 Morgan dollar exist deep in the vaults of the Philadelphia Mint. We featured a hub for the 1964 Morgan on the cover of the book, with more photographs and details of the bombshell discovery inside. This discovery was announced in late August 2016, and demand for the new book skyrocketed even before it debuted in September, causing a temporary sellout. We ordered thousands of more copies to be shipped from our printer for distribution that October.

In 2019 the sixth edition continued the ongoing exploration, conversation, and fascination with these classic coins. We dramatically expanded our coverage of the 1964 Morgan dollar, and increased the scope of the index (a helpful tool for navigating the book). A new appendix described a serious threat to the hobby: counterfeit coins. And again we updated the coin-by-coin catalog with current pricing and new certified-population data.

The Newest Edition of Bowers

Today Dave Bowers’s Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars is in its seventh edition. This latest version has been expanded by 16 pages, to include more (and larger) illustrations of circulated and Mint State grades; a gallery of toned coins; a new appendix on counterfeit Morgan dollars based on the work of retired Coin World editor Beth Deisher; a new appendix on the 1921–2021 anniversary coins; an expanded index; and a completely updated portfolio of date-by-date coin photographs. The pricing and certified-population data in the coin-by-coin chapter was again updated in a snapshot of today’s market.

George T. Morgan’s classic dollar coin continues to capture the imaginations of collectors, investors, dealers, and everyday Americans. Readers of the Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars will find much to learn in this new edition of Dave Bowers’s popular study.

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New Cherrypickers’ Guide, Sixth Edition, Volume II, to debut at the 2023 ANA World’s Fair of Money

New Cherrypickers’ Guide, Sixth Edition, Volume II, to debut at the 2023 ANA World’s Fair of Money

Whitman Publishing announces the upcoming release of the newest Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties. The sixth edition, volume II, will debut in August 2023 at the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In the meantime, the 320-page spiralbound-hardcover book can be preordered for $39.95 online, including at After the ANA show, the Cherrypickers’ Guide will be available from booksellers nationwide.

To “cherrypick” is to examine coins that appear normal at first glance, seeking those with unusual characteristics—overdates, repunched mintmarks, doubled and tripled dies, and similar features—that reveal them to be rare and valuable. The Cherrypickers’ Guide uses close-up photographs and text descriptions to show collectors what to look for. It includes rarity ratings and retail values in multiple grades.

For the latest volume, Cherrypickers’ Guide coauthor Bill Fivaz and professional numismatist Larry Briggs coordinated edits and updates. They reached out to the hobby community for advice, recommendations, research, market analysis, and photographs. The new volume features more than 440 die varieties, including nearly 80 new additions. The book covers Capped Bust and Liberty Seated half dimes, dimes, and quarters; Barber dimes and quarters; Mercury dimes; Roosevelt dimes; twenty-cent pieces; Standing Liberty quarters; and Washington quarters, including the State, D.C., Territorial, and National Park series.

Picking up from there, volume III of the sixth edition is slated to debut in 2024. It will cover Capped Bust, Liberty Seated, and Barber half dollars, plus Liberty Walking, Franklin, and Kennedy half dollars, trade dollars, Morgan and Peace silver dollars, modern dollar coins, gold coins (dollars through double eagles), classic commemoratives, bullion, and coins struck for the Philippines under U.S. sovereignty.

Bill Fivaz, a coin collector since 1950, has earned recognition as one of the country’s most respected authorities on numismatic errors and die varieties. He is a longtime contributor to the Guide Book of United States Coins (the “Red Book”), a past governor of the American Numismatic Association, and a past member of the United States Mint’s Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. With the late J.T. Stanton he published the first Cherrypickers’ Guide in 1990, launching the modern boom in interest in die varieties.

Volume editor Larry Briggs is well-known to the hobby community as a dealer, author, and educator. He was president of the American Numismatic Association’s Authentication Committee. A student of history and archaeology, Briggs served in the U.S. Air Force and worked for Ford Motor Company before launching his own business, Larry Briggs Rare Coins, in 1978. His specialties include error coins and die varieties, Liberty Seated coinage, and early American coppers.

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Second Edition of Q. David Bowers’s Guide Book of Liberty Seated Silver Coins Released

Second Edition of Q. David Bowers’s Guide Book of Liberty Seated Silver Coins Released

Whitman Publishing announces the upcoming release of the second edition of A Guide Book of Liberty Seated Silver Coins, by Q. David Bowers. The 608-page book will debut at the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money in Pittsburgh, August 8, 2023. Before then it can be preordered online (including at and after the show it will be available from booksellers and hobby shops nationwide, for $29.95.

The United States minted coins with the Liberty Seated design from 1836 to 1891. The motif was used on circulating half dimes, dimes, quarters, half dollars, and silver dollars, in addition to twenty-cent pieces, Gobrecht dollars, and, in modified form, U.S. trade dollars. Tens of millions of the coins were produced at the mints in Philadelphia, New Orleans, Carson City, and San Francisco. They were made from the Hard Times Era through the nation’s gold and silver rushes, the Civil War and its aftermath, and well into America’s Gilded Age.

As collectibles, Liberty Seated coins have been growing in popularity for years, with many enthusiastic collectors and students. The Liberty Seated Collectors Club ( is among the hobby’s fastest-growing specialty groups. Leonard Augsburger, president of the club, who wrote the foreword to the first edition, stated that “Q. David Bowers offers both beginning and experienced numismatists a fresh perspective on collecting these fascinating silver coins.”

Bowers gives colorful historical context for the coins, describing the American scene (and the state of the coin-collecting hobby) from 1836 to 1891. Then he covers all eight coins that carried the Liberty Seated design, with a coin-by-coin catalog of more than 750 entries. These entries include mintages, auction records, and grade-by-grade market values for every coin. Bowers discusses grading standards, offers advice for building high-quality collections, and explores other factors important to collectors and investors. He describes each coin’s availability in Mint State and in circulated grades; characteristics of striking; pattern coins for each denomination; production, release, and distribution; branch-mint coinage; Proofs; die varieties; shipwreck finds; conservation; and more. The book is illustrated with more than 1,500 images.

Appendices include a chronology of coin designer Christian Gobrecht; an overview of the mints used to strike Liberty Seated coins; Mint directors and superintendents of the era; an account of a visit to the Philadelphia Mint in 1861; chief coiner Franklin Peale’s description of die making in 1855; a study of master dies and hubs by professional numismatist John Dannreuther; a look at alternative U.S. currency formats of the 1800s (Postage Currency, Standard Silver, and goloid dollars); and a catalog of die and hub trials and splashers, based on the work of Saul Teichman.

Kenneth Bressett, editor emeritus of the Guide Book of United States Coins, has said, “Reading a Q. David Bowers book will expand your knowledge and inspire you to broaden and deepen your own studies.”

Numismatist Rich Hundertmark, in the E-Gobrecht newsletter, wrote: “One of the challenges [of the Liberty Seated Collectors Club] is to attract and maintain its membership and pass down the learnings of experienced collectors to those new to Liberty Seated coinage. In this regard, I see great value in this book as a tool that can be used by collectors of all levels, both new and advanced. . . . The book’s photography and images are generally outstanding, and a few renderings of Liberty Seated imagery that I had not previously viewed include a Liberty oil-on-cardboard design that I found quite compelling.”

Because Whitman Publishing is the Official Supplier of the American Numismatic Association, ANA members receive 10% off the book when purchasing directly from the publisher. It can also be borrowed for free as a benefit of ANA membership, through the Dwight N. Manley Numismatic Library.

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Dannreuther’s United States Proof Coins Volume II: Nickel Released

Dannreuther’s United States Proof Coins Volume II: Nickel Released

United States Proof Coins Volume II: Nickel, the eagerly anticipated second in a series of four important reference books on U.S. proof coins authored by acclaimed numismatic researcher John W. Dannreuther, is now available.

The 374-page book with hundreds of full-color illustrations covers the proof varieties of Three Cent, Shield, Liberty Head (“V”), and Indian Head (Buffalo) nickels. High resolution photographs show every variety with either a full obverse and reverse image or micro close-up photographs of the date positions for the obverse dies as well as diagnostic characteristics of the reverse dies when paired with the same obverse.

The book’s foreword, written by Bernus (Bernie) Turner, states: “The world of collecting United States proof coinage has expanded with the publications authored by John Dannreuther, as these volumes contain new research and previously unpublished data on United States proof coins This latest publication expands that body of information to include nickel proof coins. I, for one, sincerely hope that many collectors start participating and share in this new enjoyable, exciting field of collecting proof coins not only by date, but also by the die varieties of the nickel coin series.”

Hardbound copies of United States Proof Coins Volume II: Nickel are available for $125 each, Postpaid. Orders can be placed online at or by email at  A limited edition of 150 numbered leather bound books is planned for this summer.

The nickels proof coins book follows the 2018 publication of Dannreuther’s two-part gold proof reference work in 2018. Those who bought the two-part leather bound gold books will be able to have the same limited-edition book number inscribed on their nickel book if they reserve their copy before June 30.

The next volume in the proof coin reference books by Dannreuther will focus on U.S. silver Proofs from 1794 to 1922 and will be published in late 2024 or early 2025. He also is planning a book about copper Proofs.

John W. Dannreuther was a co-founder of Professional Coin Grading Service and an honored inductee in the PCGS CoinFacts Coin Dealer Hall of Fame. He was named the 2007 Numismatist of the Year by the American Numismatic Association, and in 2022 he received the highest honor given by the Numismatic Literary Guild, the Clemy Award.

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77th-Edition Guide Book of United States Coins Released

77th-Edition Guide Book of United States Coins Released

Whitman Publishing announces the release of the 2024 (77th edition) Guide Book of United States Coins, popularly known as the “Red Book.” The newest edition of the hobby’s best-selling reference is available from bookstores and hobby shops nationwide, and from online booksellers. The 472-page book comes in several formats including the classic red hardcover, two spiralbound versions (softcover and hardcover), and Large Print.

The Red Book prices nearly 8,000 coins and coin sets in up to 9 grades each, with more than 32,000 retail valuations in total. It has many new features and updated research, plus additions to the book’s 2,000-plus color photographs, which include enlarged close-ups of rare and valuable die varieties.

Coin collectors have used the Red Book to value their collections since the 1st edition was published in 1946. Today, Senior Editor Jeff Garrett coordinates the book’s advisory network of more than 120 professional coin dealers and researchers. Q. David Bowers serves as research editor, and Kenneth Bressett, who has worked on the Red Book since the 1950s, is editor emeritus.

The book covers legal-tender United States coins from 1792 to date, from copper half cents to $20 gold double eagles, commemoratives, and bullion, plus earlier coins and tokens that circulated in colonial times. With every new edition the latest coins from the United States Mint are updated—Lincoln cents, Jefferson nickels, Roosevelt dimes, America the Beautiful quarters, Kennedy half dollars, Native American dollars, American Innovation dollars, commemorative coins, bullion coins, and government-packaged coin sets. The book also includes popular specialized collectibles such as error coins, Civil War tokens, Confederate coins, Philippine coins struck under U.S. sovereignty, private and territorial gold pieces, pattern coins, Hawaiian and Puerto Rican coinage, Alaska tokens, So-Called Dollars, and special modern gold coins.

The Red Book is the world’s most popular annual retail price guide for U.S. coins, tokens, and other numismatic items. More than 25 million copies have been purchased since 1946, making it one of the best-selling nonfiction titles in the history of U.S. book publishing.

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The Original and the Second “Mr. Red Book”

The Original and the Second “Mr. Red Book”

Kenneth Bressett’s memoir A Penny Saved: R.S. Yeoman and His Remarkable Red Book celebrates the life of Bressett’s mentor, hobby legend Richard S. Yeo (known as R.S. Yeoman), and the longevity of the Guide Book of United States Coins (the “Red Book”), first published in 1946. The 352-page hardcover volume is available from bookstores and hobby shops and online (including at Here, numismatic historian Joel J. Orosz provides an appreciation of both Yeoman and Bressett.

Two Whitman book series, the Handbook of United States Coins and A Guide Book of United States Coins, both truly numismatic institutions, were the inspiration and dedication of two men, who first established, then refined these series for decades. One, Richard Yeo, was the founder, consummate salesman, and ambassador; the other, Kenneth Bressett, was the scholar and developer. The story of their joint achievement, annually renewed, is worthy of note and remembrance.

Richard Yeo was a son of the Badger State, blessed with a flair for design and a knack for making friends. Whitman Publishing of Racine, Wisconsin, hired Yeo in 1932 and soon put him to work selling coin boards and, later, the celebrated blue coin folders beloved by generations of young collectors. Although new to numismatics initially, he wasn’t afraid to ask specialists for guidance.

As R.S. Yeoman, Yeo continued as editor of the Red Book for nearly a quarter century, making it into the most trusted guide for retail prices and earning him the title “Mr. Red Book.” Throughout the 1960s he appeared frequently as a brand ambassador for his many publications at coin shows, conventions, and clubs, where he autographed books and charmed collectors with his modest demeanor and engaging personality. By the time of his retirement in 1970, he had proven his pen name truly apt, for his “yeoman’s service” benefitted not only Whitman Publishing, but all of numismatics.

Of all of Yeoman’s many achievements, perhaps the greatest was mentoring his successor.

Ken Bressett of Keene, New Hampshire, became a numismatist while in his teens. He had printer’s ink in his veins, as one of his early jobs was as a “printer’s devil” in the twilight years of the hot-lead printing process. In the mid-1950s Yeoman was attending a coin show and Bressett discussed with him some questionable items in the Guide Book. Instead of taking offense, Yeoman recognized his talent and later engaged him as a freelance editor. Whitman hired Bressett in 1959, with his responsibilities encompassing the Blue Book and Red Book series. By 1962 he was made assistant editor and later managing editor in 1965, giving Yeoman more opportunities to be a roving ambassador.

Bressett’s tenure as editor lasted an astonishing 53 years; even after his formal retirement in 2018, he has continued with special projects for Whitman. It was natural, therefore, that following Yeoman’s death in 1988, Bressett inherited the title of “Mr. Red Book.”

Bressett’s stewardship was lengthy, and also quietly revolutionary. He enhanced not just two book series but an extraordinarily successful and truly beloved numismatic institution. A glance at the 1966- and 2019-dated editions of both the Red Book and the Blue Book shows how vastly he (often with some behind-the-scenes help from his son, Philip) improved these iconic products. They employ similar organizational schemes, but everything from the typeface to the factual content was enriched. Page counts nearly doubled, incorporating new coin issues, and novel research expunged old errors and added important fresh findings. Timely special features were added.

Ken Bressett achieved the highly improbable: he supervised production of two successful books and for five decades simultaneously preserved and reinvented them—a seamless fusion of tradition and transformation. Two men, two enduring book series, more than three-quarters of a century; one shared sobriquet. Only the oldest coin collectors of 2023 can remember numismatics without the Blue Book or the Red Book, all thanks to the extraordinary exertions of not one “Mr. Red Book” but two.

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