September 2015

ANA Worlds Fair of Money Report 2015
Post date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 - 09:53



Sullivan Numismatics Booth at ANA

Our corner table at the ANA. Jon on the left and Ash on the right.


This is the third time that the ANA World’s Fair of Money has visited Chicago, Illinois, but it is also the last time for a while. If you have not been able to attend due to the distance of the show, the next few years may change that since the show will be moving to Anaheim, CA in 2016, and then on to Denver, CO in 2017. Although Chicago has been a decent location, it will be nice to move on to other locations and allow other collectors to attend this fantastic coin show!


The ANA’s official attendance count was 8,635 attendees, with about half of them being ANA members and the other half not. Things to do at the show included attending the auctions being held by Heritage Auctions (they sold approximately $45,000,000 worth of coins and paper money) and Stacks/Bowers, both of which had massive quantities of coins, paper money, and a decent selection of mint errors and varieties. The ANA’s auctions are important events as the number, quality, and depth of coins sold and the prices they sell for are gages of how well the numismatic industry is doing.  Many of the finest coins sell at these auctions, and record prices are common occurrences at these sales. 


Another show attraction were the many exhibits of coins which are generally high quality and well put together. Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to view the exhibits this year, which is often the case when you’re a dealer behind a table. The ANA had some fabulous coins on display, which I did get a chance to quickly look at—their exhibit is always worth a look since they have the huge ANA collection to pull coins from to exhibit, as well as the money, knowledge and resources to present it all effectively.  


The show stayed fairly busy and we saw a good amount of traffic every day of the show up until Saturday, at which point a lot of families and non-collectors showed up. These people were mostly interested in browsing, asking questions, but not purchasing or selling anything. It’s good to have these attendees though, since this is how new collectors are introduced to the hobby, and in fact, this is exactly how I became interested in coins a few decades ago. If you want to make new collectors out of your kids, bring them to coin shows so they can see coins in person and perhaps form an interest in the hobby.


From a business perspective, it was a show that was especially good for buying coins, although we made a decent number of sales as well. A few individuals who had promised to bring coins to the show did in fact show up with their collections, which we purchased after agreeing on prices. To my excitement, a few rarities which I had been trying to buy for some time, also were brought to our table, and those along with many smaller purchases made for an excellent and above average “buying” show. 

The CONECA Banquet was great fun, and is an excellent place to catch up with fellow error collectors and dealers. Left to right: Rich Schemmer, Fred Weinberg, Jon Sullivan, Mike Maino, and Jim Essence.


My discussions with other non-error dealers were mixed with some dealers having “one of my best shows ever”, and other dealers complaining that it was a terrible show. We were very happy with the show, and chalk it up as one of our best shows ever. The error dealers we talked to all seemed to be having a good show. It’s rare to have so many error dealers in the same place at the same time, and that is one of the things that makes the ANA special for error collectors since the typical large coin show might have 2 error dealers, or 3 if you’re lucky.

CONECA's table at the show. All error collectors should be members--it's worth the small membership fee! Left to right: Unknown, Mark Lighterman, Bob Mills, Al Raddi.


 CONECA was well represented at the show, with a club table and plenty of CONECA members to help man it. It is important to have these volunteers man the table, since it keeps CONECA and error coins in the public eye so that new collectors can be introduced to errors and varieties, and also so that current members can have a place to go and have questions answered. Feel free to volunteer at the next show if you have a some extra time at the next ANA or show where CONECA has a booth. 


The next ANA World’s Fair of Money will be august 9th-13th in Anaheim, California at the Anaheim Convention Center. The show is a must-attend for error and variety collectors, so go ahead and make your plans to join the fun next year, and if you do attend be sure and bring your errors to show and tell, and come to the CONECA banquet, and stop by our CONECA table. You wont regret coming!



And what would a show report be without some error coins! Below are some of the error coins we purchased at the show.


Kennedy half struck off-center on a clad quarter planchet.

1859 Indian cent struck off-center.

Transitional off-metal 1964 Kennedy half struck on a clad quarter planchet (should be silver.)



Double-denomination 1991 cent on dime. 

Lincoln cent struck on bow-tie scrap.


Minting JFK Commemorative Gold Half Dollars
Post date: Monday, September 14, 2015 - 12:00


We ran across this interesting blog post put out at It discusses and shows photos of the dies, planchets, and minting press for making the 2014 gold commemorative 50c coins. Here is a link to the blog post.