From the Road Report Archive

August 13-20, 2011: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Rosemont, IL


Prologue:

Good morning coin collector, coin dealer, industry professional or someone who has just found us accidentally while doing a Google search for "Coin Operated Laundry in Rosemont, IL" but is now systematically reading each and every Road Report which has appeared on this site since 2005 -

And, in our humble opinion, this one figures to be as entertaining as any of them, since we anticipate no shortage of numismatic activity to write about. 

Certainly this RR will be as long as any we've ever written, too, since this show continues on all the way through August 20th, an 8 day odyssey which for us begins today, as both Dave and I will be at the deluxe CRO table #911 putting the finishing touches on our extensive inventory display, hanging banners like crazy, and preparing for the anticipated onslaught of activity to follow as almost everybody who is anybody in the coin world should be here this week buying, selling, schmoozing, displaying, grading and doing almost everything else that people do when they are coin shows.

And whatever those things turn out to be, you can read about them first, right here, in this space, every single day of this show.

Until tomorrow -


August 13th:  Day 1

At 8:30 AM on Saturday your author stormed into the Donald E. Stephen’s Convention Center, casually approached the information booth, like lightning obtained my deluxe show badge, passed through the secure bourse room door with ease and immediately bumped into the CRO table literally inches from the main entrance.

Yes, this will be acceptable.” I said to myself, noting that not only did we have an excellent and very prominent corner spot with acres of room, but also one with a hanging rod perfectly suited for the CRO banner (which has not been the case at the last several ANA shows, where there has been only a tiny hanging rod large enough to hold one shirt, size medium), and a large column behind the table on which we could either lean, or paste other things of marketing value.

But rather than reveling in our grade A location, we began the important work of filling six (6) bourse cases with coins, tokens, medals and one unidentified object, arranging them in some kind of coherent order, making sure each one had a price sticker on it, labeling the case keys, attaching them to a massive chain just slightly larger than my high school janitor Mr. Pentinininin used to tote around and then sitting back and waiting for the crush of show visitors to descend upon us.

Um, one problem:  There really weren’t very many people here.

Just a smattering of dealers, including the industry’s largest auction houses and major players, a number of the people on the national circuit, and maybe a couple of dozen others.  And while a bunch of us were clustered near the door, others were waaaaay out in the numismatic suburbs, 6 or 7 aisles away, isolated, and mostly looking forlorn way over there.

Still, they seemed densely crowded compared to the attendees, who I believe numbered somewhere in the 30’s.

Dave later explained to me that what I was experiencing was PNG Day, which included dealers who had paid for the privilege of being here this weekend (as opposed to golfing, for example), and their invited guests.  That’s it.  No walk-ins, or early arrivers, or guys sprinting around the floor to buy up the cool stuff before anyone else could get it.

What there was instead was some lowly murmered consternation from some of the dealers (who always seem to gravitate to us) suggesting that this Pre-Show was not sufficiently advertised or promoted to get the word out or get people to come here.

So then Dave and I just sat around doing nothing, right?

Actually, we did more wholesale business than we might have expected, selling a bunch of coins ranging in price from about $300 to $30,000, and buying at least as much on the floor from dealers who had arrived here with some pretty cool new stuff.  Total haul:  27 coins, including one of the coolest pieces of early gold we have had in a looooong time.

Anyway, with most of that activity finished up by about 3 PM, we started to focus our attention on the Bowers auction starting at 5, on grading submissions, and on figuring out the plan for the next couple of days, which as far as we know is likely to look a lot like today, though with, we hope, more people.

But not the people we ran into as we were walking out on Saturday, as most of them were in the building for Comic Con, a massive comic book convention taking place in an adjacent room, and one where half the attendees looked like that guy in my college dorm who was an expert at Rubik's Cube and had a pet tarantula, and the other half were dressed as their favorite animated hero.  Some of which (like Wonder Woman) I recognized, while others (such as the gentleman in the lobby with two heads), I did not.

Per their schedule, these fine folks will be here through Sunday the 14th, so if you want to see them, or plan to show up in costume, best you get here by then.

And that was it.

We’ll be back at it on Sunday, scouring the floor for more cool coins to buy, selling some of the neat new stuff we brought, viewing all of the upcoming auction lots, picking up our grading submissions and, importantly, trying to figure out which character that giant Amazon woman in the bikini is supposed to be, and then writing all about it on Monday AM.

EOM


August 14th:  Day 2

Breaking news everyone:  I have now been informed by an experienced numismatist (and one with evidently widely varied interests) that the giant Amazon woman in a bikini seen yesterday entering Comic Con is, most likely, the character from “Attack of the 50 Foot Woman”, a circa 1958 cult film that I am somewhat embarrassed to admit I have never seen (yet).  So everyone can please stop emailing me about this now.

And with that important issue resolved, we can now devote our attention to the actual coin show, which started on what seemed like a low note, since I entered the convention center at about 8:30 Sunday morning and encountered almost no one.

Gradually, though, the bourse got busier (though never busy), and I would say that by 10 AM it looked a little more crowded than Saturday, and there was actually some noise (not a buzz mind you, but at least sounds of activity) in the room.

But for us, it was again pretty productive, as we had 2 more retail customers visit than we might have expected (since we did not expect any), selling a surprising 8 coins in the process.  And for a Sunday at any show, with the sort of material we carry, 8 is nothing to numismatically sneeze at in your author’s humble opinion.

We also bought 2 colonials, 2 grandiose federal coins and 1 world coin from several different sources, and tried in vain to track down something cool that was rumored to be on the floor, but that we never found.  We also pondered something new to the market and very expensive from another dealer, and, even though it was probably well worth what he was asking, we did not buy it (yet).

After that we walked around the floor 63 times, but nothing much else happened, so while Dave went lot viewing at Stack’s, your author left early to attend an important numismatic off-site meeting during which he hit the 7th hole in two, burned the edge on a 25 foot putt and continued my 40-year streak of never having eagled a par 5 (yet).

And while I was finishing up that significant piece of business, Dave was out at dinner with a dealer friend, then figuring auction bids for the upcoming session, and dreaming about Monday, during which all of the other dealers will start setting up at 3 PM (not a moment too soon from our perspective), and the actual show-show will get started.

An ancillary benefit of which will be the rich numismatic fodder it provides for tomorrow’s Road Report, to be posted right here in just about 24 hours from now.
 

August 15th:  Day 3

Upon arriving at the show on Monday morning, I noticed 6 things:

  1. It seemed more crowded, and it was definitely louder than the previous days, with a bunch of guys yelling to each other across the room like you might expect to encounter at a college fraternity party.
     
  2. Dave was already here working, making this the third consecutive day he beat me to the table, something that I don’t think that has ever happened before.
     
  3. Even though all-dealer set up was scheduled from 3 to 6 PM, it seemed like an awful lot of the guys were getting an early start, some bringing in massive piles of display cases, coins and paraphernalia on large wheeled carts that looked extremely awkward and cumbersome to handle.
     
  4. The environment was nearly perfect for acquiring a massive headache, as, in the middle of it all, the elaborate ANA exhibits were being assembled by people using the loudest tools possible.
     
  5. There were a lot of convention center staff people hauling tables and display cases around on forklifts and golf carts, all driving like maniacs, weaving in and out, never beeping a horn or warning anyone, with several narrowly missing your author as he performed important numismatic tasks.  If this continues, I honestly believe that some poor dealer pushing an awkward and cumbersome wheeled cart is going to get run over in the next couple of days.
     
  6. The vast size of this room became more apparent as it began to fill up, to the point that I believed it when another dealer informed me that this will be, and I quote, “The largest coin show ever held”.

And in this more active and more crowded environment, we did pretty well thank you, selling some nice (but not new) RB federal copper, a high end 55 Double Die we just acquired last week, a stone cold gem Peace Dollar, a few colonials of the mid grade, mid price variety, and then, all of a sudden, a superb world crown which had been, to that point, the most looked at item in our case.

We then began the systematic process of walking up and down every aisle, checking out every table and trying to find interesting material - an exercise which I would describe as inefficient (since not everyone was set up or had their coins out yet), but necessary (since something great would inevitably be snapped up by someone else if they got there first).

And while that can be frustrating (since we will need to keep doing it again and again until everyone is here), we did OK, buying a few scattered pieces here and there, some which will be graded, but others that went straight into the case and which will, I predict, be sold here before they ever see our Early Bird list or the website.  We’ll probably go back and pick up a couple of the others after pondering them overnight.

Things progressed well until about 5 PM or so, when a lot of the PNG dealers started migrating out for the evening's banquet and the crowd thinned noticeably, at which time Dave and I began to pack up for dinner at Gibsons down the street where we saw almost every other dealer, and your author ordered the Cajun Ribeye "as spicy as possible", which it was.

Tuesday should be considerably busier, as everyone will be here, all the coins will be out, the ribbon will be cut (in what will undoubtedly be a very, very long and boring ceremony) and the public will come pouring in at 9 AM.

So I will now need to stop writing this and get some rest in order to be ready for them.
 

August 16th:  Day 4

First, I would like to apologize for an error in yesterday’s RR in which I stated that the ribbon cutting ceremony to open to the show to the public on Tuesday morning “will undoubtedly be very, very long and boring”.

In actuality, it was astonishingly longer and significantly more boring than I could have possibly imagined, as the ANA, keeping with tradition, had a number of different people at a podium speaking into a microphone that, based on my assessment of the sound quality, had been purchased in 1971.  Apparently (since I could only hear about 25% of what was being said despite standing not more than 20 feet away) they were congratulating each other and some local politicians on the great job they had done putting on this show and announcing the winner(s) of some award while being serenaded with occasional insults and rude gestures by some of the less couth dealers in the far reaches of the room.

Now, I certainly don’t condone the insults and rude gestures, but I think whatever purpose this ceremony used to serve, it is time to retire it, and possibly replace it with something brief like “Gentlemen, start your engines”, or possibly just with a gate flinging open like at the beginning of a horse race.

On a more positive note, there were an awful lot of people waiting to get in, and when that ribbon was finally cut, the collectors (at least the ones who had not fallen asleep) exploded onto the bourse floor and immediately scattered all over the place, including to our table, where a number of different people all bought something at approximately 125 mph.

And it remained steady if not overwhelmingly busy for us (since even a huge crowd was easily swallowed up by the vast room and almost endless supply of dealers) for the entire day, during which we bought some great stuff that wandered up to the table, sold some nice NEWPs and older inventory as well, made a number of trades of different kinds and generally did about as much business as we had hoped to do in this venue.

Highlights included our acquisition of a deluxe Central American Republic 8 Reales in the afternoon to replace (sort of) the superb MS65 example we sold on Monday, the sale of our lovely Continental Dollar to a serious collector, and, unusual for us, a high dollar value sale of gold bullion.

We also experienced some near misses, as we were offered but passed on some cool but aggressively priced coins, almost sold a large group of colonial type coins to a collector who wanted more time to ponder, and tried to buy a coin out of the case of another dealer who was never there despite your author walking over to check 62 times (hyperbole) during the day, until I went back on the 63rd time (hyberole), to find that, of course, it had been sold to someone else 30 seconds earlier.  That's annoying.

We were more successful socially, though, seeing lots of collector friends who had come from far and wide to be here, many sharing the same sentiment that they were not really sure what days would be best to attend in this new and universally unpopular ‘long version’ of the ANA.  The consensus from many was to come early and stay as long as possible, which sounded like a good idea to me if you can swing it.

Late in the day we crammed in some last minute lot viewing and then left some podium bids with Stack’s Bowers for their evening session, and headed out to dinner with a collector friend who regaled us with one of the more bizarre and intriguing coin-deal-gone-wrong stories we have heard lately, and one in which we were delighted to be non-participants.

And then we headed out since it was time to write the next CRO ad and this installment of the RR before getting up early and doing it all again tomorrow.

Finito
 

August 17th:  Day 5

We could fill up today’s report with more stories of fast paced auction and purchases and sales taking place from early in the day until late afternoon (since that’s what happened), but today I thought we’d focus on a some of my favorite coins that I have seen here, since that is part of the fun of an ANA:

The Tom Turrisini collection of 1794 Large Cents
We’ve known Tom for years and we have seen his concise collection of gem 1794 Large Cents before – though for all that time the coins were raw and housed in plastic Kointains holders.  Lo and behold, Tom bit the bullet and had these slabbed by PCGS in the last month or so and they seemed to like them as much as everyone else, grading them as follows:  66 BN, 66 BN, 64+ BN, 65+ RB, 66 RB, 66+ BN, 65 RB, and 65+ RB.  So when he casually walked up to our table this AM with a PCGS box we were delighted to see them again, concluding that, if anything, a bunch of them looked undergraded and the whole group frankly blows away most of the high grade early cents we see at auction or described by others as “finest known”.

The 1732 Pillar Dollar in the NGC display
This is my favorite world coin at the show, the classic first year of issue of the Pillar series, presented with a group of other gem world coins at the NGC table, but standing out above the others IMO for its incredible, original, stone cold gem condition and perfect color. 

The Albany Church Penny with D in the case of Julian Leidman
I became aware of this coin a few weeks ago when it suddenly and unexpectedly appeared on the pop report as an XF45+, though to be honest when I saw the listing I thought it might just be a typo.  Of course, I did not realize at the time that Julian had it, or that it  would be at the table next door to us at this show, so I can now report with certainty that it is definitely not a typo, and is easily one of the finest of only about 10 of these known.  

The 1799 Eagle at O'Connor Numismatics
We've always loved this issue, but the sad fact is that is that most of the pieces are dipped, stripped or otherwise unoriginal and not so attractive.  But this piece is absolutely original, having come fresh from a family holding where it was stored in an envelope, straight to PCGS where it was graded a very appropriate MS64+, and then direct to the bourse all the while avoiding an evil conservator who might well have upgraded it (and ruined it) in one fell swoop

The 1793 Liberty Cap Cent in MS64 BN ex Eliasberg
Of all the coins on the floor (or any floor, anywhere, for that matter) this is my single favorite piece and the one that I (and many, many other people I know) would most like to own.  Being presented as part of the fantastic High Desert type set at the PCGS table, and surrounded by other superb gems, this coin stands out as one of the most famous and recognizable pieces in all of numismatics.  This coin last traded in the 1996 Eliasberg sale where it was described to the hilt (including Max Mehl’s long ago description of this coin which featured this memorable line:  “I do not recall during my 45 years of numismatic experience, during which I have handled a very goodly portion of the finest collections of American coins offered, of having passed through my hands such a thrilling coin!”).  But frankly, in person, it is better than I expected, especially in the context of an issue which so seldom comes nice, and for which the next best coin ain’t even close.

Tomorrow we will be back to describing the action, and there should be no shortage of it, including a full day on the bourse floor, and the start of the Stack’s-Bowers colonial and federal auctions, during which we anticipate bidding wildly on our target coins, and witnessing a lot of entertaining antics in the auction room.

More later.
 

August 18th:  Day 6

In a giant coin show filled with activity, we figured Thursday would be what numismatists call “an extremely big day”.

You see, it would be on this day that the auctions would kick into extra high gear, with Stack’s-Bowers’ significant offerings in US coins starting at noon and continuing into the wee hours with the deluxe Rarities Night session.

Because of this, we knew a number of collectors would not even be arriving at the show until today so as to take part in it.

And they did, and they did, creating a not-untropical-depression like downpour of activity at our table starting early (where we sold that cool gold coin referenced earlier in this loooong RR), continuing through the afternoon (where we sold more coins than on any other day at this show, in all categories, including tons of federal coins, at least one 'smoker' token, a Captain Cook Medal and a slew of colonials), interrupted only by the sound of your author raising his bidder paddle and buying just about everything we wanted in the auctions held on the other side of the lobby.

Speaking of which, the auctions seemed to us to be a pretty big success, with large and active crowds and bidding all over the room in the afternoon session, and an absolute mob in the evening (including lots and lots of people I have never seen before) in what was among the loudest, most active auctions I have ever personally attended (on par with some of the best Ford sales, which is amazing when you think about it), with every seat filled, and the back wall of the room lined with people craning their necks in unison to see over the other people who were milling about, oblivious, and occasionally standing directly in front of me eating cake.

We also bought a few things on the floor, including a killer colonial, a choice early US coin pedigreed to some guy named Louis Eliasberg, and some lovely choice and gem proof federal coins for a set we are building for a new client.

But do not worry, we also carved out some time for important schmoozing throughout the day, and at dinner, where team CRO met up with a dealer friend and 3 serious collectors at Gibsons, which was every bit as loud and crowded as the auction room had been.  Better food though.

And that was it.

We will be back at it on Friday, picking up auction lots, sorting NEWPs, getting late show grading and gazing at the horizon where we may catch a glimpse of the end of this 8-day odyssey being in sight.  Certainly, though, there will be considerably more buying, selling, trading, grading, schmoozing and Road Report writing to be done before we get to that point.
  

August 19th:  Day 7

It is said that a marathon runner will ‘hit the wall’ at the 18 to 20 mile mark, suddenly feeling the cumulative effects of thousands of steps and wondering if he or she can summon the strength to make it to the finish line. 

And while I have never personally run a marathon (though I was once forced to watch a Lord of the Rings trilogy at a child’s birthday party), I can now firmly relate to this feeling, since at about 2:30 on Friday I suddenly found myself totally exhausted just after the snack bar closed and there was no more coffee available.  And while there is no doubt part of this feeling is due to previous 6 days of getting up early and running around all day, a lot of it was caused by the incredible level of activity on Friday alone, with seemingly more buying, selling and coin dealering activity than on any of the previous days at this show.

During which we sold all sorts of things ranging from a lovely and reasonably price English Sixpence, to a superb early quarter we had purchased earlier at the show to most everything in between, and bought about 20 new coins from many sources, both around the room or that had just walked up to the table.

And somewhere in there we picked up our Stack’s-Bowers auction lot winnings which can best be described as an absolute and utter haul, some of which will be coming to an EB near you shortly.

Amazingly (since this was the 7th day for cryin’ out loud), we also saw a number of our collector friends for the very first time, as they had just arrived here and were touring the floor at high speed.  And while one might wonder in these circumstances if all the good stuff would have already been snapped up by then, I don’t think that was the case (at least at our table), since several of them bought cool coins which we had received back from grading and which had not been on display until today.

Other notable events for us on Friday included seeing a very low grade but absolutely lovely and smooth Continental Dollar, showing off an extra-spectacular Shield Nickel proof, discussing some of the bizarre auction results with collector attendees who knew the even more bizarre and interesting back story on some of the coins, and having lunch delivered to us unexpectedly by one of the major dealers (for the second time at this show), which was most appreciated.

It also gave us the strength to make it to the late afternoon, at which time we began to sort out which NEWPs we’d be shipping out for photography, which ones we’d be Brinksing home, collating paperwork, picking up checks and generally starting to plan our departure on Saturday afternoon.

Before which I am positive there will yet be a lot of activity, as I have heard from a few of our customers that they will be attending the show tomorrow morning for the first time, looking to buy or sell.

And we will be as alert and awake as possible when they do.

Note that our next RR (the exciting final chapter) will be posted from home on Sunday.  So don't miss it!


August 20th:  Day 8

After a thoroughly exciting week+ at the ANA Convention in delightful Rosemont, Illinois, we thought it would be great to begin this final recap by whining and complaining:

  • I sure hope they change the schedule next year and kill the pre-show idea, since it didn’t seem to us that it accomplished anything other than forcing an extra and not very exciting auction, exhausting all of the dealers and confusing collectors (at least the ones who could not take an entire week off of work to be here for the duration) about when it made sense to show up.  I would imagine, however, that the incremental revenue generated by the ANA for this made it a “success”, and just about assured it will happen again next time.
     
  • I like a casual stroll as much as anyone, but I have officially had enough of the hamster Habitrail-style unbelievably long walkways from the various hotels and parking lots to the convention center (which I got to thoroughly test this week, often while lugging heavy bags to one meeting or other).
     
  • Grading mostly sucked.
     
  • There was a very nice selection of excellent restaurants within walking distance of the show offering almost any option you could want, provided that you only wanted to eat a massive steak every night, which I do not.

But really, those few minor issues were absolutely swamped by all the good stuff in what was the best, busiest, most exciting, most entertaining and, possibly (since we have not added everything up yet), most commercially successful show we have ever had.

  • Sales (on the floor and in the auctions) were, overall, nothing short of fantastic.
     
  • After seeing two guys (or possibly girls) dressed as Darth Vader and an Imperial Storm Trooper inexplicably wandering around the show all week, I was thrilled to finally figure out on Saturday that they were promoting some hokey commemorative coin series being produced by the New Zealand Mint.  Still, I did not buy any.
     
  • Despite mostly packed auction rooms and bidding which ranged from enthusiastic to totally-over-the-top (which I am sure will be well documented elsewhere and which I will not list here), we were able to buy almost everything we wanted and at less than our max bids.  I have no idea how that happened, and I am not complaining.
     
  • I continue to believe that the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center Sloppy Joes here are the most delicious lunch on the coin circuit (though I recommend you eat them with a spoon).
     
  • On four different occasions at this show, involving four different coins in our inventory, we had people fighting over who would get to buy it.  That doesn’t happen very often and is not fun when it does, but I think we can safely say that it is at least indicative of a strong market.
     
  • In a last minute deal, we were able to acquire two exceptional coins from a collector who in previous months (and despite our begging) had steadfastly refused to sell them to us.
     
  • Overall we leave here with about 200 NEWPs in all categories (a slew of which will be on our EB on Tuesday) which is quite amazing considering that we sold a bunch of newly acquired coins right at the show, and yet it still appears that we were net sellers (in $) at the ANA in total, which was not the plan and frankly blows my mind (it also means that we will be aggressive buyers leading up to the LB show, looking for cool fresh coins to offer, so if you have any, now would be a good time to call our 800 number).

But now, after 8 long days of numismatic fun, your author is going to be officially off duty for the next 24 hours.

The End

 

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It was nice to be back on the circuit today at our monthly event in nearby Westford, MA. So I got there bright and early at 7 AM, set up the table, artfully arranged a new and different-every-time subset of our inventory and began a solid 7 hours of shopping, schmoozing, selling and, on this day, trading in the form of one of our big colonials for several medium-sized ones...

September 25, 2016: The Westford, MA Show

If this was the 4th Sunday of the month it must have been time once again for the Westford, MA Show, which explained why your author was up extreeeemely early and out the door on a Sunday morning for cryin' out loud...

August 28, 2016: The Westford, MA Show

While (most of) the rest of the numismatic world was sleeping in, or possibly out for pancakes, your author and some of his New England coin dealing brethren were up early and off to suburban Westford, Massachusetts for the regular ‘4th Sunday of Every Month’ show...

August 6-13 2016: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Anaheim, CA

Prologue After months of anticipation, weeks of preparation, days of organization and hours of pack-ification, Team CRO is finally rocketing toward Anaheim, CA for the 2016 ANA World’s Fair of Money...

July 13-16, 2016: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: And now for something completely different. Actually, that's true on two levels: There is, for the first time ever (or at least for the first time in recent memory) no "official" auction at this show, allowing us to eschew our usual catalog schlepping, lot viewing, bid planning and auction attending here in Baltimore and to focus instead on buying and selling coins on the actual bourse floor...

June 8-11, 2016: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: After just a quick 6 hour and 20 minute flight (seriously - I think I did it faster in an old DC-6 once) your author arrived in balmy SoCal for what figures to be an interesting LB Expo replete with buying and selling ops on the bourse floor, and some cool tokens and medals in the HA auction...

April 26-30, 2016: The Central States Show in Schaumburg, IL

April 26th:  Day 1 There are a lot of good reasons to take the very first flight out in the morning: The airport is less crowded then...

April 14-16, 2016: The Chicago International Coin Fair

April 14th:  Day 1 I woke up on Thursday numismatically disoriented (as sometimes happens on these trips), first thinking I was home, then in Baltimore, and finally in my college dorm room before I snapped out of it and remembered that, no, we are at the glorious CICF show in Chicagoland, and it’s time to get going...

April 6-8, 2016: The EAC Convention in Charlotte, NC

Prologue: I have good news everyone.  I have determined that it is a LOT easier to pack for a trip when you never actually unpack from the previous one...

March 31-April 2, 2016: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: After an extreeeeemely busy couple of weeks in the CRO offices (which included a brief buying excursion at the Manchester, NH show) we are about to embark on what might be the the most jam-packed April in CRO history, starting in Baltimore and then continuing on to Charlotte for the EAC show, then Chicago for CICF, then home, then in Chicago AGAIN for CSNS...

March 2-5, 2016: The ANA National Money Show in Dallas, TX

Prologue: Good morning website visitor and welcome to this our first installment of the ANA RR written here at my airport gate while a guy seated across the aisle not 6 feet from me is devouring an Egg McMuffin like a scene from the water hole on Wild Kingdom...

February 2-6, 2016: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Whilst it seems like just yesterday I was witnessing a medium-sized brawl at our gate at Long Beach Airport as we waited to depart this fine city the last time, that was actually 4...

January 24, 2016: The Westford Monthly Show, Westford, MA

No, we do not normally write a Road Report about a local show that we did not even take a table at, but this time we figured what the heck, let's do it...

January 5-9, 2016: The FUN Show in Tampa, FL

January 5th:  Day 1 Good morning and welcome to this our first full-blown RR of the year, delivered to you in living color from scenic but surprisingly loud (what is that constant noise that sounds like an industrial dryer in the hotel?) Tampa, Florida, and not the usual Orlando location for this show...

January 2, 2016: NY International Lot Viewing at the Waldorf

Normally we wouldn't write a Road Report for a mere auction viewing trip, but we're going to make an exception in this case for two reasons: To highlight the challenge this overlapping NY International vs FUN Show schedule presents for dealers like us, and To get full credit for the amount of travel hardship we're willing to endure to acquire cool coins for the site...

December 3-5, 2015: The Houston Money Show

Prologue Good morning coin enthusiast, and welcome to this the first Houston Show RR we've written since 2007 (that being the last time we attended this non-regularly scheduled CRO event through the years)...

November 5-7, 2015: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: I have to say we are as enthusiastic as ever about this event, partly because it's always a great show in this venue, partly because this fall installment includes the Colonial Coin Collectors Club Convention and partly because we have not attended a major show since Long Beach in mid-September and are thus champing at the bit for some major coin activity...

September 16 - 19, 2015: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Hard to believe it's been a month since our last event, but a quick perusal of the calendar (remove it from the wall, flip to August, turn the page to September) and indeed that is the case...

August 10-15, 2015: The ANA World's Fair of Money

Prologue Well, it's here, the year's largest and best attended coin show, the one that always seems to have the coolest displays, largest number of auctions, most interesting stuff for sale and biggest variety of U...

July 15-18, 2015: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: Welcome coin blog enthusiast to this pre-show, palate teasing, amuse-bouche edition of the RR designed to set the stage for the summer edition of the Baltimore Expo which we hope will be scorching...

June 3-6, 2015: The Long Beach Expo

June 3rd:  Day 1 Having arrived in Southern California late on Tuesday evening, your author hit the ground running on Wednesday...

April 30-May 3, 2015: The EAC Convention in Irving, TX

Prologue: Rest easy and be calm CRO website visitor, we are back from our extended, non-work-related tour of Italy (during which your author ate 63 arancini and at least 111 caprese salads) and ready to dive back onto the U...

April 9-11, 2015: The Chicago International Coin Fair

Prologue: Aah yes, the CICIF show, CRO's once annual opportunity to formally and completely devote ourselves to the 'Dark Side' (as in world coins, you know, the ones made in or circulated in places other than the good ol' US of A)...

March 24-28, 2015: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue Words are perhaps inadequate to express your author's enthusiasm for the upcoming Baltimore Expo (the first of three to be held during the year), but as this is a written blog I am going to try real hard anyway: Yes, we are reeeeeaaaaaally looking forward to this one because business is typically fan-tastic here, with a plethora of dealers, a plethora-and-a-half of enthusiastic collectors and the best mix of colonial, U...

March 4-7, 2015: The ANA National Money Show in Portland, OR

Prologue Top 10 reasons we are excited to attend the ANA Show in Portland this week: 1.   We haven't had a show here since 2011...

January 28-31, 2015: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: I'm not a meterologist, but I have concluded after carefully analyzing a decades worth of data that the absolute best way to predict a blizzard in New England is to look at the schedule and check the dates of the year's first Long Beach Expo...

January 7-10, 2015: The FUN Show & Auctions

Prologue: Ladies and Gentleman: Welcome to your 2015 Numismatic Year! And what better way to kick-off the new year than to attend the FUN Show in Orlando, where the weather is warm (at least so far), the wholesale activity has already been humming, the show grading has been submitted and the auction lots have been thoroughly viewed and vetted (and let me tell you, that was no mean feat considering that there are about 7,000 of them here to look at, many are complicated and time consuming and we’ve had to spend more time than usual re-grading, looking for hidden problems and figuring out what we like enough to actually bid on)...

October 29 - November 1, 2014: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue With the greatest of ease and not so much as one travel hiccup, misstep, misshap, lost bag, delay, detainment or quarantine, we have arrived in Baltimore once again for what we exect to be a thoroughly delightful Expo experience...

October 9 - 11, 2014: The PNG New York Invitational

October 8th:  Prologue Go ahead, try to guess the last time that CRO set up at a show in New York City...

September 3 - 6, 2014: The Long Beach Expo

September 3rd:  Day 1 Having arrived in Long Beach the previous evening and still operating on east coast time, I woke up crisply at 3:13 AM on Wednesday, tried to go back to bed, mostly failed, and eventually got up for good at 5ish...

August 4 - 9, 2014: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Rosemont, IL

August 4th:  Day 1 After months of anticipation, weeks of preparation, and hours of coin price tag sticker-ification (literally – I think we finished pricing everything at 2 o’clock Monday morning), we were 103% ready for the start of the ANA World’s Fair of Money 2014...

June 25 - 28, 2014: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

June 25th:  Day 1 Landing in Baltimore bright and early on Wednesday morning, I hurriedly grabbed my bag and jumped into a cab which I had no way of knowing would be driven by one of those guys who is either flooring it or jamming on the brakes continuously for the entire ride...

June 4 - 5, 2014: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Yes, it is indeed time for another exciting installment of the thrice annual Long Beach Expo...

May 1-3, 2014: The EAC Convention in Colorado Springs, CO

May 1st:  Day 1 Greetings from sunny Colorado Springs, where your author delightfully finds himself for another exciting edition of the Early American Coppers Convention...

April 22 - 27, 2014: The Central States Show in Schaumburg, IL

Prologue: Greetings Road Report reader and welcome to this our first installment of the 2014 CSNS report, a very fine event held in a convenient semi-suburban location very close to the last show we attended not even two frickin' weeks ago...

April 10 - 12, 2014: The Chicago International Coin Fair

Prologue: We are delighted to be attending the Chicago International Coin Fair this week, a world coin only (or at least ‘mostly’) event held in familiar Rosemont, Illinois right on the same street as the ANA show in August...

March 27 - 29, 2014: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue Aaaah yes, the Baltimore show, one of our favorite events of the year, particularly this March installment...

March 13 - 15, 2014: The Bay State Show in Marlborough, MA

March 13th:  Day 1 During the course of a year, most of the major shows we attend are in elephantine convention centers in large urban areas, like Baltimore, Long Beach, Orlando, etc...

February 25 - March 1, 2014: The ANA National Money Show in Atlanta

Prologue: Good morning coin collector, coin dealer, industry professional or random person that has accidentally stumbled upon this site and welcome to this the first installment of our Atlanta RR, this penned here in New England before we have even gotten on the darn plane...

January 29 - February 1, 2014: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: And this time, we are all Guinea Pigs. Well, sort of, as we descend upon SoCal for the Long Beach Expo just as we always have...

January 6-11, 2014: The FUN Show in Orlando, FL

Prologue Ah, the Fun Show, that relaxing post-holiday jaunt to sunny and warm (um, warm-er) Orlando for what is always an entertaining, exciting and productive show...

November 5-9, 2013: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: After a ~5 week hiatus since the Long Beach show we are primed and ready for the always excellent Baltimore show, as evidenced by the fact that we will be down here at the crack of dawn on Tuesday before most of the rest of the numismatic world has shown up...

September 24-28, 2013: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Having thoroughly recovered from the Philadelphia show, I leaped out of bed at 3:30 AM on Tuesday, threw together enough clothes for another 5 days on the road and then bolted out the door for my ~6 hour flight to southern California...

September 18-21, 2013: The Whitman Philadelphia Expo

Prologue: Important travel update: I was informed today at the airport security screening that I could leave my shoes on, which either means that they think I’m a senior citizen (possible), or the rules have changed without anyone posting about it on Twitter (unlikely)...

August 12-17, 2013: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Rosemont, IL

August 12th: Day 1 Greetings Road Report reader, and welcome to this the first installment of the ANA World’s Fair of Money RR Extravaganza (which will not include a detailed description of the Official ANA Pre-Show, since I did not set up at that...

June 19-22, 2013: The Whitman Baltimore Expo

Prologue: Let’s compare this summer installment of the Whitman Baltimore Expo to the spring and fall versions of this event: Size: This one is a smaller, more intimate affair, with fewer dealers and tables (though I expect there will be more than enough coins on display to satisfy even the most voracious of numismatic appetites)...

June 5-8, 2013: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Good morning Road Report reader and welcome to this our 1st installment from the year's 2nd Long Beach Expo...

May 8-11, 2013: The ANA Money Show in New Orleans

Prologue: Not that I am not excited to attend shows in other venues (because really I am), but this one is special, taking us to fabulous New Orleans, LA for coin-filled days and evenings offering enough entertainment options to satisfy even the most adventurous numismatist...

May 2-4, 2013: The EAC Convention in Newark, OH

Prologue: Good morning and welcome to this first installment of the EAC RR written before we depart for this not-that-easy-to-get-to event located outside of Columbus, OH...

April 24-27, 2013: The Central States Show in Schaumburg, Illinois

April 24th:  Day 1 As CRO embarks on three (3) shows over the next three (3) weeks, you are reading the very first of what will be a veritable ton of Road Report entries (if you print them all out on heavy 14pt stock, which is of course not necessary since you can always find them here on this site arranged chronologically)...

March 13-17, 2013: Whitman Baltimore Expo and Auction

March 12th:  Prologue After a several week hiatus between shows, I was psyched to wake up at 3 AM on Tuesday, thrilled to drive to the unbelievably crowded airport, excited to get on the plane and zip down to Baltimore, jazzed to scoop up my luggage at baggage claim, delighted to hop in a filthy cab and very, very happy to stride through a cold rain into the hotel lobby here in the Inner Harbor at about 8...

February 6-9, 2013: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Here is what I notice about flying to Los Angeles: 1.  It seems like the flight is slightly longer each time...

January 8-13, 2013: The FUN Show

Prologue: Good morning people and welcome to this the first RR of 2013, written before I have actually gone anywhere (and even before I have started packing, a reflection of the fact that your author has not had the opportnity to write one of these since November and simply could not wait any longer)...

November 13-17, 2012: The Baltimore Expo and Auctions

November 13th:  Prologue No one likes a good coin show more than your author, but I have to say I am looking at this one with perhaps just a little trepidation only because I fully expect to be completely, totally and thoroughly exausted (even more so than usual at one of these events) by the end of it...

November 9-10, 2012: The Bay State Show in Marlborough, MA

November 9th:  Day 1 Although I kept thinking it was Thursday, and I did get lost on my way to the show, I did eventually find my way to something called the “Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel” in unfamiliar Marlborough, Massachusetts, walked in the door, and stood in the line to collect my show credentials...

November 8, 2012: Lot Viewing at Stack's-Bowers in NY

Hello and welcome to this one day, quick hitting, extra special, bonus edition of the Road Report (an RR Mini, if you will) in which we 1) Detail today's journey to the Stack's-Bowers offices in NY and 2) Offer some admittedly not-that-keen insight into a day in the life of a coin dealer...

October 17-20, 2012: ANA National Money Show in Dallas

October 16th:  Prologue After a month+ since our last installment of the RR it's finally time to hit the road again, straight to the Fall ANA Show in the heart of Texas...

September 5-8, 2012: The Long Beach Expo

September 4th:  Prologue I am pleased to report that this, the first installment of the Long Beach Road Report, is being written from the comfort of my flight to California, in a window seat that will not recline, strategically surrounded by young children who were all screaming earlier, but have since stopped...

August 4-11, 2012: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Phladelphia

August 3rd:  Prologue After months of anticipation, weeks of preparation, hours of sorting inventory and 7 minutes of shoving clothes indiscriminately into a suitcase, I officially declare myself prepared and ready for the 2012 World’s Fair of Money...

July 31, 2012: Heritage Lot Viewing in Philadelphia

I am delighted to provide this Bonus RR about my day-trip to Philadelphia made exclusively to view Heritage auction lots, a previously unplanned, hastily arranged visit made necessary by the challenges of this year’s cumbersome ANA show and auction schedule...

July 18-20, 2012: The PCGS Members Only Show in Las Vegas

Prologue: After a quick 5 and a half hour flight from New England on an airplane comfortably cooled to 43 degrees in the cabin, I have arrived in well-lit Las Vegas in anticipation of another entertaining and productive PCGS Members Only Show...

June 27-30, 2012: Baltimore Expo and Auction

Prologue: Good morning coin enthusiast! We are pleased to present this the first of five (5) reports from the Baltimore Show (though this one is being written from the airport in New England where your author is sitting at 4:48 AM waiting for one of the 11 restaurants in this Terminal to open and sell him a coffee)...

May 30 - June 2, 2012: The Long Beach Expo and Auctions

May 29th:  Prologue Welcome to this the first installment of our LB RR, a carefully crafted pre-trip summary typed by me (JA) mere moments before I zip off to the airport for the looooong trip west...

May 7-12, 2012: ANA National Money Show in Denver, CO

May 7-8: Pre-ANA Seminar Good morning people: While our readers may have come here expecting to see exciting news about our flights from New England, or possibly something about a lost bag, instead you are going to get some heavy-duty numismatic content as I describe the two-day ANA-sponsored seminar that I (DW) attended, along with a dozen other men and women, prior to the show...

May 2-6, 2012: The Early American Coppers Convention in Buffalo, NY

May 2nd:  Day 1 While it would have been nice to wake up Wednesday, have a leisurely breakfast and then calmly fly to Buffalo, it turned out to be one of those ridiculous mornings where nothing goes right, you can’t find your phone, and the incredibly important box of coins that was shipped to you and that you desperately need to take with you to EAC has not yet shown up in your PO Box when you go check at 7:30 AM...

April 17-21, 2012: The Central States Show in Schaumburg, Illinois

April 17th:  Prologue This week’s blog will be a departure in several ways from our typical CRO Road Report...

April 4-6, 2012: The PCGS Las Vegas Invitational

No question about it – traveling from New England to Las Vegas and back over just a few days requires several things: A mega-commitment to do everything we can to find new cool coins for the site...

March 20-24, 2012: Baltimore Expo and Auction

Prologue Good morning coin collector, coin dealer, industry professional or person(s) who have stumbled upon this website accidentally while attempting to do an internet search for “Coin Operated Laundry”, or “Do it yourself dog grooming"...

February 29 - March 3, 2012: The PCGS Members Only Show in Las Vegas

Just back from the latest PCGS Show in well-lit Las Vegas, Nevada, we are pleased to present another Top 10 observations from this show: 1...

January 30 - February 4, 2012: The Long Beach Expo and Auctions

Prologue: Good morning everyone - And while it seems like ages since our last Road Report 3 days ago, we are again delighted to be back in the numismatic saddle and jetting off to yet another show, this one waaaaay across the country in sunny (I just checked the forecast) SoCal...

January 25, 2012: Stack's-Bowers Americana Auction in New York

Just back from our annual pilgrimage to the Stack’s (now Stack’s-Bowers, of course) Americana Sale, we are pleased to present this quick-hitting, no-holds-barred, profusely illustrated auction recap Part I for your reading pleasure...

January 3-8, 2012: The FUN Show

Prologue: And then, suddenly, the 2012 FUN Show is upon us, requiring your author to re-assemble the CRO travel kit (the components of which always seems to get widely dispersed between shows), grab a flight to Orlando and then emerse ourselves in what we expect to be a high-quality, 6-day, numismatic experience in which we offer some cool, new, never-before-seen rarities (including a collection acquired just days ago), try to buy every interesting coin we see, and engage in some deluxe socializing at various local restaurants...

December 13-16, 2011: The PCGS Members Only Show in Las Vegas

While most of the numismatic world was out Xmas shopping, or possibly  trimming their trees, I attended the PCGS Members Only Show in Las Vegas show so that I could then make the following observations about it right here in this space: The Palazzo Hotel venue is nothing short of spectacular, with palatial rooms, access to more shopping than most malls, more dining options than most cooking shows, one of the most comprehensive gyms I’ve ever seen in my life and, of course, night life that continues through daylight hours (though frankly it is very hard to tell which is which around here)...

November 15-19, 2011: The Baltimore Expo & Auction

November 15th:  Day 1 The good news is that I slept very well in preparation for today’s trip to Baltimore...

November 10-12, 2011: The Bay State Show & C4 Convention

Prologue: Ah yes, after one major snow storm, some extended power outage, followed by some impressive Indian summer with temperatures reaching almost 70 degrees (during which your author may or may not have been seen wearing shorts around the office), we are prepped and ready for our first show in nearly 30 (thirty) days...

October 12-15, 2011: The National Money Show in Pittsburgh, PA

October 12th:  Day 1 Optimistically, I headed down to the hotel lobby on Wednesday morning, walked briskly out the front door and stepped directly into a fine mist which would have been excellent for growing orchids, but which was unpleasant for the couple of block walk to the convention center...

September 14-17, 2011: The Whitman Philadelphia Expo

Prologue Since we just got back from Long Beach, and I have spent most of the time since then unpacking a suitcase whose handle was ripped clean off by an airline who shall remain nameless (Virgin America) and then immediately repacking a new one, you might think we'd be a little tired of this traveling thing...

September 7-10, 2011: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue: Good afternoon Road Report reader, It should by now be obvious that team CRO was not in California for the festivities (i...

August 13-20, 2011: The ANA World's Fair of Money in Rosemont, IL

Prologue: Good morning coin collector, coin dealer, industry professional or someone who has just found us accidentally while doing a Google search for "Coin Operated Laundry in Rosemont, IL" but is now systematically reading each and every Road Report which has appeared on this site since 2005 - And, in our humble opinion, this one figures to be as entertaining as any of them, since we anticipate no shortage of numismatic activity to write about...

June 14-18, 2011: Baltimore Show and Auction

June 14th:  Day 1 For CRO, our Baltimore Show began at precisely 3 AM on Tuesday as your author leaped out of bed, began packing like a crazy person, jumped in a cab and made it to the airport well in advance of the first flight to BWI departing at just after 6...

May 31 - June 4, 2011: The Long Beach Expo

Prologue We'll be doing a truncated version of the LB show this time, which is to say that we will be here for every waking moment of it, but not here for the preceding Goldberg auction in Beverly Hills which has, by this time, already taken place (which explains why we did not write anything about that)...

May 11-13, 2011: Early American Coppers Convention in Portland, OR

Prologue Just when we finally have (almost) all of those post Central States show loose ends tied up, it's time to hit the road again, this time for a looooong cross-country trek to scenic Portland, Oregon for the always entertaining EAC Convention...

April 27 - April 30, 2011: The Central States Show in Chicago

Prologue We are delighted to be back in Chicago, and when we say Chicago, we of course mean Rosemont, Illinois, famous for a small cluster of hotels, a large, utterly non-descript convention center and for being sort of near Chicago (but not so close that it does not take at least an hour to get there during rush hour)...

March 29 - April 2, 2011: Baltimore Show and Auction

Prologue Today will be what numismatists refer to as a “very long day”, as we wake up shockingly early, head to Baltimore, view coins at Stack’s-Bowers for hours and then roll straight into auction session #1 starting at 7 o’clock and ending 700-something lots later...

March 15-19, 2011: The ANA Money Show in Sacramento

Prologue Good mornng everyone: I am pleased to say that I am all packed, completely ready and just about to zoom to the airport for an entire frickin' day of travel en route to the ANA Money Show in delightful Sacramento, CA...

February 18, 2011: The Local Country Auction

The other day a collector remarked about how we regularly mention Stack’s, Heritage or other major auctions here on the site, but never say "boo" (his word, not mine) about other sales...

February 2-5, 2011: The Long Beach Expo

February 2nd:  Day 1 Truth to be told, I'm just happy I was able to make it here at all to write this exciting edition of the RR, since that was very much in doubt right up until my flight was de-iced for the 3rd time (never a good sign) leaving New England...

January 26-28, 2011: Stack's Americana Auction

January 26th:  Day 1 Good morning everyone, Today we’ll be discussing our trip to Stack’s annual Americana Auction, in which a slew of early American coins, medals, exonumia and other assorted hoo-ha is auctioned off right in the heart of NYC, this year in a 2-day, 306 page, 2,812 lot affair...

January 3-9, 2011: The FUN Show

January 9th:  Day 7 We are pleased to be back home in New England in extremely cold, unpleasant conditions with a big pile of snow just outside the window, as opposed to the awful sunshine and palm trees we had to endure over the last week in Florida: But now that we are here, it is of course time to recap the just-ended FUN show in earnest...

November 11-13, 2010: The Bay State Show & C4 Convention

November 14th:  Day 4 In past years on Sunday at this show we’d stroll in around 10 AM with a coffee and a donut, pack up all of our stuff, say our good-byes to all of the C4 guys we only see once a year, and then leave...

November 2-6, 2010: The Baltimore Expo and Auctions

November 6th:  Day 5 Whilst I planned an early start on Saturday, I was not thinking 2:19 AM, which is the precise time I was awakened by 4 or 5 drunken revelers who were either re-enacting the entire chariot race from Ben-Hur, or possibly practicing the long jump (not sure which) in the hallway just outside my hotel room...

October 27-30, 2010: Coinfest and the Heritage Auction

October 30th:  Day 4 As noted yesterday, one of the other dealers (Colonel Steve Ellsworth, who occupied the table directly next to us) told me that, surprisingly, at the last several shows he attended Saturday was the busiest day...

September 29 - October 2, 2010: Philadelphia Expo & Auctions

October 2nd, 2010 - Day 4: Did you know that the coverage of the Ryder Cup golf started at 3 AM on Saturday, east coast time?  It did, and I know that because I was awake and watching it after sleeping poorly and not for very long...

September 22-25, 2010: The Long Beach Expo and Auctions

September 25th - Day 4: While it would definitely make for a more exciting RR to say otherwise, the reality is that Saturday was not very eventful, as I just cleaned up a few loose ends, collected the last couple of checks and headed out at about midday...

September 11, 2010: The Colonial Numismatic Barbecue

In one of the highlights of this (or any) numismatic year, yesterday we attended the numismatic barbecue held annually at the lovely east coast home of a serious collector / good customer / gracious host...

August 5-14, 2010: The Boston ANA Pre-Show(s), Show and Auctions

August 14th - Day 10: I am now comfortably back home after the best ANA we have attended in several years, which can be summarized as follows: Boston (and the Hynes Convention Center specifically) was an excellent venue in almost every way with plenty of cool things to see and do nearby...

June 16-19, 2010: The Baltimore Expo and Auctions

Day 4:  Saturday I think we could most accurately describe Saturday as a minor mad-house, with a lot of stuff going on all day, including some concentrated wheeling and dealing with many different people all over the room (some, but not all, of which was successful), picking up the last of our thoroughly appropriate grades received from PCGS, a very brief period of the lights going out in the convention center, some very successful check collecting (though we had our doubts for a few minutes there), extremely entertaining show and telling (including a stunning coin that we compelled a serious collector to sell us), a very soggy but still acceptable tuna sandwich for lunch, some last second consignments to the major auction houses on behalf of collectors and dealers alike, some typically hectic packing and shipping coins for photography and, finally, some late afternoon high-tailing it to the airport (from where I am now typing this installment of the Road Report)...

May 29 - June 5, 2010: The Long Beach Expo and Auctions

Day 8:  The Exciting Conclusion Actually, it was exciting, as we did a little more business on Saturday (including selling a fantastic PCGS 65+ Saint we had acquired at this show), picked up our last Heritage lot, then began the process of packing everything up like crazy, pausing only to reflect on the week that had been...

May 19-22, 2010: Whitman Nashville Expo

Day 4: With Saturday came the largest crowd of the week, which should not be interpreted as me saying that there was a large crowd...

April 27 - May 1, 2010: The Central States Show in Milwaukee, WI

Day 5: Saturday started off quite well, thank you, with the sun streaming into my hotel room window (after a violent rain storm the night before), and an email saying that our offer on a cool coin (which we had been trying to buy for weeks) had been accepted...

April 22-24, 2010: The EAC Convention in Annapolis, MD

Day 3: As noted here yesterday, I was thinking that Saturday might be another busy and active day on the bourse floor, with lots of customers, exciting new purchases and almost non-stop writing of long and detailed invoices...

March 24-27, 2010: The ANA National Money Show in Ft. Worth, TX

Day 4: Saturday John bolted out of Texas at 2:30 AM (actually it was probably more like 8, but he likes to exaggerate), leaving me, David J...

March 2-7, 2010: The Baltimore Expo and Auctions

Day 5: Saturday began as they usually do at these shows, with us packing up and checking out of our hotel, then schlepping heavy bags across town to the convention center in what could probably best be characterized as an inconvenient pain in the neck...

January 30 - February 6, 2010: The Long Beach Expo & Auctions

Day 8: For those of you who expected this last installment of our LB Road Report to be written and up early on Sunday morning, please note that I did too...

January 25-27, 2010: Stack's Americana Auction in New York, Part II

While John did his lot viewing at Stack’s on Friday last week, I, David J. Wnuck, headed out this Monday for the car + train trip into Manhattan...

January 22, 2010: Stack's Americana Auction in New York, Part I

Good morning everyone, and welcome to this special bonus edition of the RR recapping my one-day jaunt down to NYC for some intensive lot viewing at Stack’s...

January 4 - 10, 2010: The FUN Show

Day 7: It would be ideal to start this FUN show wrap-up by describing each of the 23 choice early copper coins we purchased from a little old man who walked into the show on Sunday, but since that didn’t happen we’ll begin instead by saying that (even though that one imaginary guy was not present) there were still quite a few people in the room...

November 19-22, 2009: The Bay State Show & C4 Convention

November 22, 2009:  Day 4 Well, after much activity on the previous days, and a late night at the auction on Saturday, we were pretty tired on Sunday...

November 9-14, 2009: Baltimore Show and Auctions

November 14th:  Day 6 Get away day is always a lot of fun, since it means we need to get up earlier than usual, pack, check out of the hotel and then haul our luggage to the convention center, usually in a rain storm...

October 9-11, 2009: Coinfest! in Stamford, CT

October 11th:  A Day of Rest  Sunday started off extremely nicely, as instead of hanging out in my hotel room in the morning (which unfortunately has been the custom for a few years now), I got myself down to the gym, worked out, had breakfast, packed up my stuff, checked out and then walked down to the show at about 9:30 to get ready for the 10 o’clock opening...

September 22-26, 2009: The Philadelphia Expo and Auctions

  September 26th:  And, in Conclusion Let’s pick up Saturday’s action at about 10:02 AM, when, just as I arrived at out table, another dealer walked up and informed us that on Friday he had sold a couple of pretty big coins that we jointly owned...

September 4-12, 2009: The Beverly Hills Auctions & The Long Beach Expo

September 12th:  Leaving, On a Jet Plane Here I am, back in the same airport terminal I visited just a few weeks ago after the ANA, and little has changed:  The restaurant options are still lousy, and the security guy on the Segway is still roaring through the terminal at about 35 mph...

August 3-9, 2009: The World's Fair of Money in LA

August 9th - Day 7: I’m writing this in Gladstone’s, a loud restaurant and bar with extremely mediocre service in LAX’s Terminal 3, but still the best option available (just ahead of Burger King) for unwinding after 7 long, tiring days of ANA-ing...

June 25-27, 2009: The MidAmerica Coin Expo in Schaumburg, Illinois

Saturday: Well, we were ready for something (anything) out of the ordinary on Saturday, but it turned out that wasn’t necessary, since it ended up being a lot like any weekend day at any show anywhere in the country...

June 10-13, 2009: Baltimore Coin & Currency Expo

Day 3 (Saturday): Day 3 started with your author checking out of his hotel, and thus saying farewell to his bizarre (and bizarrely large) hotel room...

May 27-30, 2009: The Long Beach Expo

The Exciting Conclusion: It proved to be a typical Saturday at LB, which is to say that we spent our time packing up and standing in the astonishingly slow post office line, as opposed to buying and selling coins...

May 13-16, 2009: The Whitman Atlanta Coin Expo

Day 4: It may surprise you to learn that Saturday was the most crowded day of the show. Though a weekend crowd at most shows is typically one with a high percentage of parents with young children and others out for a look-see, and that was the case here...

April 28-May 2, 2009: The Central States Show in Cincinnati

  Prologue: If this is Tuesday, we must be off to Ohio for the surprisingly long CSNS show. Amazingly, we’ll have PNG dealer set-up late this afternoon, PNG day on Wednesday and then a regular coin show from Thursday through Saturday, which should give us more than enough time to buy and sell, schmooze, grade, view lots, attend the HA auction, bid on the good stuff and generally conduct as much coin business as possible before leaving town...

April 16-17, 2009: The EAC Convention in Kentucky

Day 2: Can you imagine staying in a hotel in which every single person you see (other than the waitress and some guy – presumably a staff member – painting a hallway) is a coin collector or dealer?  I can, because this is exactly what it's like here, including at breakfast this morning, when I entered the restaurant and recognized absolutely everybody at every table...

March 23-29, 2009: The Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Postscript: I did finally make it home, by the way, but not before my cab from the airport was pulled over by the police for speeding (a first for CRO) and a massive 45 minute argument errupted while your author sat in the backseat, quietly wondering what the appropriate etiquette is in this situation...

March 19-21, 2009: The Bay State Show in Boston

Day 3: I wasn't expecting much on Saturday, and that's exactly what I got. A decent crowd rolled in, and I had a few lookers, but a grand total of (add the 7, carry the 1 ...

March 12-15, 2009: The ANA National Money Show in Portland, OR

Day 4: No matter how carefully we plan, or how much time we have to pack up everything and head to the airport, it always seems to turn into a fire drill at the end of a show...

January 29-February 7, 2009: The Long Beach Expo

The Exciting Conclusion: Truth be told, it wasn’t that exciting.  Rather it was sort of a typical Saturday in LB, with mostly families and visitors looking around, and not too many serious transactions taking place (at our table or anywhere else that we could see)...

January 14-15, 2009: Stack's Americana Auction

This just in - it was very, very cold in New York.   It was also not very crowded on the streets and sidewalks, which might have been because everyone was huddled in doorways trying to keep warm, or because the economy has taken its toll on people hanging out in NY shopping and going to Broadway shows...

January 3-11, 2009: The First Show & FUN Show

Day 8: And at 2 PM, mercifully, it was over.  But not with a bang, it was more like a slow creeping death like when a plant gets sick...

November 18-22, 2008: Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Day 5: I thought for a minute there our show was going to end on an extremely high note, as it appeared we were close to selling an expensive federal coin in the waning moments (during the packing up phase of our departure, right after our second lunch, but before Dave scaled the back table for the ceremonial removal of the CRO banner), but alas if it is going to be, it will be happening by phone later, and not here in person...

November 13-16, 2008: Bay State Show and C4 Convention

Day 4: I found out what Dave bought at the auction after I left:  a New Jersey copper, a Vermont copper, a USA button, a Fugio with a counterstamp (first we can recall seeing) and 2 unusual items destined for the "Wnuck Collection"...

November 7-9, 2008: Coinfest!

Finito! What were the top five things that happened on Sunday at Coinfest?  Good question - let's take a look: 1...

October 21-22, 2008: Stack's 73rd Anniversary Auction

Day 2: Wednesday began with the gentle sounds of a guy throwing a large steel trash can against a dumpster at 5:24 AM directly outside my hotel window, which was a nice (though fairly typical) way to wake up in NY...

October 15-16, 2008: The 2008 Silver Dollar & Rare Coin Expo

This will be a bonus Road Report, as I flew out to the St. Louis show for just a day and a half to try to buy coins on the floor, sell a few things, view some Scotsman and Heritage auction lots, see a few customers and gather sufficient anecdotes to write the following recap: First, you will be pleased to know that my flight out was uneventful, and pleasant, in the sense that it was not as horrendous as most flights we take these days...

September 13-20, 2008: The Long Beach Expo

Post Mortem: I have four things to say today: I apologize for this being so late.  Frankly, I was exhausted after the show (but not too exhausted to go play golf over the weekend)...

August 19, 2008: The Coin Collection at Colonial Williamsburg

I am pleased to offer some bonus Road Reporting from my vacation side-trip to view the extensive colonial and early American coin holdings (including pieces on public display, as well as the cool stuff hidden away in the top-secret vaults) at quaint Colonial Williamsburg...

July 26-August 3, 2008: ANA Week

And in Conclusion: It seems like about a month and a half ago we were sitting in the Stack's ANA pre-show auction buying some cool coins, and it feels like a few weeks ago when we sold our first coin on the floor on Monday during the ANA PNG-Day set-up, and just a few hours ago when we sold our last coin (a red unc...

July 8-12, 2008: MidAmerica Coin Expo

The Post-Game Show: Surely Saturday would be slow and uneventful, right? That's what we expected, figuring that serious collectors who planned to come would have shown up on Thursday and Friday (for first shot!), leaving us to cool our collective numismatic heels on Saturday before packing up to leave at day's end...

June 5-7, 2008: Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Airport Report: I always enjoy these last-day reports from the Baltimore show, as I typically write them in the airport terminal across from Wendy's (which is somewhat nostalgic, since in 1990 I loaned my car to my brother while I was studying abroad and he dumped a gigantic Wendy's Chocolate Frosty all over the interior, then attempted to clean it with Armor-All, which took the finish off the leather seats)...

May 24-31 2008: Long Beach Expo

Day VIII: I have a little more time to write today, so brace yourself for a full dose of Road Reporting...

May 8-9, 2008: Early American Coppers Convention

Day 2: I arrived at the bourse this morning right here in my hotel at 8:50 for my anticipated entry at 9 and discovered that most people had been there since 8...

April 15-19, 2008: Central States Numismatic Society

Conclusion: Actually, it was exciting, as the positive vibe continued here at CSNS. But let's start at the end: Dave and I headed out at about 4:15 to catch a flight, but even as we were leaving it seemed like the room was still surprisingly full, with about 60% of the dealers still at their tables (though most were in serious 'packing-up' mode at that point trying to get everything organized before they booted us all out)...

February 26-March 2, 2008: Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

The Exciting Conclusion: Well, we weren't the only people on the bourse floor on Sunday, but about 75% of the dealers had vamoosed and the collector traffic could be best described as ‘hardly anyone was here'...

February 13-16, 2008: The Long Beach Expo

Day 4: True to form, Saturday at Long Beach evidenced all 11 of our standard final-day-of-the-show activities: Having a customer ask for a specific coin which you had on display starting on Wednesday all the way through until about 20 minutes earlier, at which you had boxed it up and delivered it to the post office for shipping home...

January 15-16, 2008: Stack's Americana Auction

Because we hadn't quite had our fill of coins at the FUN show, we were delighted that Stack's had scheduled their annual Americana auction (plus some cool world coins and notes in a total of 4 robust catalogs) for Tuesday and Wednesday this week in NYC...

January 5-13, 2008: The FUN Show

Day 9: In addition to our normal commercial goals at a show, our plan for Sunday was to finish shipping out coins, tie up the last remaining loose ends and methodically complete and audit our show paperwork...

November 29-December 2, 2007: Bay State Show & C4 Convention

Conclusion It's 1:13 PM on Sunday as I begin writing this final installment of the Road Report, and I'm already home in my living room, sprawled on the couch completely exhausted by the week's activities (and there were many)...

November 13-17, 2007 - Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Airport Report: Having carefully calculated Baltimore traffic conditions, I am now in the airport precisely two (2) hours before my flight and ready, willing and able to crank out the last installment of the Road Report for this show right here at my gate...

October 26-28, 2007: Coinfest

Day 3: I'm typing this comfortably seated on my couch, back at home, after a very nice Sunday at what turned out to be a superb Coinfest show...

October 16, 2007: Stack's Ford XX and XXI and 72nd Anniversary Auction

Part I: (Silence). That was the sound of us trying unsuccessfully to hoist our bidding paddle in the air at what was, apparently, the last and final evening of John J...

September 23-29, 2007: Long Beach Expo and Surrounding Auctions

Day 7: A quick 5 hour red-eye flight across country (which included no sleep whatsoever), and we're back in New England now and finally able to post the last (and, based on our emails, much anticipated) Road Report from the September, 2007 Long Beach Expo...

August 3-12, 2007: The ANA World's Fair of Money

Day 10: The lamps have been turned off. The coins have been put away. The invoices and receipts organized and collated...

June 28-30, 2007: Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Finito: Saturday didn't start well. Upon checking out of my hotel, I had to admit to the incredibly attractive woman at the hotel reception desk that I had eaten a Pop-Tart from the min-bar in my room and that it should be added to the bill...

June 21-24, 2007: MidAmerica Coin Expo

If this is Sunday, we must be back in New England after another successful coin show, another interesting coin auction, and another opportunity to talk coins with another group of local collectors...

May 26-June 2, 2007: Long Beach Expo and Surrounding Auctions

  Epilogue I'm pleased to report that I'm back in New England as I type this final chapter of our Long Beach saga, having taken the red-eye, crossed the country and slept a good, solid 14 minutes since leaving the show...

May 22, 2007: Stack's Ford XVIII and Henry Leon Auctions

We planned to bring home a lot of loot, and that's exactly what we did. From the 3 PM kick-off of the Ford session through some early Americana, an exuberant session of several hundred colonials, US type coins, etc...

May 9-12, 2007: Central States Numismatic Convention

Day 4: After a generally tepid beginning, and then some bright moments, the show ended with a pretty quiet Saturday relegating this year's CSNC to 'Decent' (as opposed to 'Blockbuster', or 'Nuclear-White-Hot') status on the patented CRO Coin Show Rating-o-Meter...

April 26 - 28, 2007: The Early American Coppers Convention

A Surprisingly Lively Affair I don't have official figures, but I'm guessing this was an all-time EAC attendance record...

March 30, 2007: Bay State Show, Boston

There is a measure that we numismatists use to gauge the quality of a coin show: If your lunch is longer than your time on the bourse floor, it's probably not a blockbuster event...

March 20-24, 2007: Baltimore Coin & Currency Convention

Epiloque We were about half packed up, organizing paperwork and just about ready to head out the door late Saturday afternoon when it walked up to the table: A coin prominently listed on a number of our customer want lists, available right then and there and looking pretty good, raw, in an old tattered envelope...

March 15-16, 2007: Charlotte Mid-Winter ANA

Make it funny This whole thing started when I left for the Charlotte ANA show. John said to me: "Since I'm not going to the show, you must write the Road Report...

February 22, 2007: Trip to the Bennington Museum

We have a special bonus 'Road Report' today, recapping my trip to the Bennington Museum (in Bennington, Vermont, of course) to view the collection of Vermont colonial coins...

February 9-18, 2007: The Long Beach Expo

Day 9: We have unplugged our table lamps, shipped home several enormous boxes of auction catalogs, rolled up our banner and have closed the book on another LBE...

January 25 - 26, 2007: The Money Show of the Southwest

After some extensive advanced planning (which began last week), I decided to make the trip to Houston this week for the 50th annual Money Show of the Southwest...

January 11 - 12, 2007: The NY International Show

This one was really different. First of all, it was held at the Waldorf-Astoria on Park Avenue on the 18th floor on something called the 'Starlight Roof', a setting perhaps better suited for a fancy wedding reception in a movie starring Audrey Hepburn...

January 1-6, 2007: The FUN Show

Day 6: Sorry for the delay getting this last installment posted - I flew out on Saturday night and got back home at midnight feeling awfully tired and rundown...

November 29 - December 2, 2006: Bay State Show and C4 Convention

Put a positive fork in the Bay State Show, which ended Sunday after a fun-filled and very productive 4 days in downtown Boston...

November 8-11, 2006: Baltimore Coin and Currency Convention

This time the Baltimore show was pretty much like every other time: Good. Very good. In fact, it was better than we thought it might be...

October 19-20, 2006: St. Louis 'Silver Dollar' Show

While Dave was in New York looking at all of the cool, rare and high-end stuff at the various Stack's auctions this week, I was in quiet St...

October 17-18, 2006: Stack's Auctions

I packed up my lot-viewing psyche, my loupe and halogen lamp, my 'What would PCGS grade this thing?' prognostication hat and trucked on down to New York for the impressively diverse series of auctions at Stack's this week...

September 18-21, 2006: New York Invitational Show and Auctions

If I said to you that the New York Invitational Show would be held in Manhattan in a place called the 'Metropolitan Pavilion', what would you expect? Perhaps a grand ballroom? 30 foot ceilings, intricately carved columns and the requisite large ornate chandeliers? Not quite...

September 9-16, 2006: Long Beach Expo and Pre-Auctions

Let me tell you, there is nothing like the Long Beach Expo to test your luggage packing skills. 8 days, two hotels, all of our show materials and everything we need to view and evaluate lots...

August 11-19, 2006: Denver ANA

I've now received ANA show feedback from a number of collectors and dealers and I've read a blog or two on other dealer sites and articles in various chatrooms, all of which make me wonder whether we attended the same show as everybody else...

July 14-17, 2006: Baltimore / Washington Coin Expo

I don't want to get all emotional here, but I love the Baltimore show. The venue is good, the the turnout is strong and the mood is excellent, people are buying and selling with gusto and there are, generally speaking, a lot of nice coins from which to choose...

July 1-7, 2006: ANA Summer Seminar

What could be better than a week of intensive numismatic activity surrounded by other numismatists in an idyllic mountain setting? Well, actually, a lot of things, but for the purposes of a numismatic-related website, I'll say 'nothing'...

June 21-24, 2006: Mid-America Coin Expo

We packed up late Saturday after a rather unexpected little show here in Chicago. Generally speaking, the Mid-America Expo is a nice regional event...

May 26-June 2, 2006: Long Beach Expo and Pre-Auctions

Our 8 day, 20,000 coin, 3 major auction company, 19 auction session, 3 days of wholesale activity and 3 days of actual coin-show odyssey began on Friday, May 26 when we arrived in Beverly Hills...

May 23-25, 2006: Stack's May Auctions including Ford XIV

We like coin auctions as much as anyone, but this week at Stack's was pushing it. We had 4 separate catalogs to be offered in three separate sessions over a three-day period which, of course, would end just in time for us to catch that flight to the Long Beach Show...

May 4-6, 2006: EAC Convention

If you like personalized attention, want to focus in-depth on one fascinating and important area of US numismatics, enjoy seeing displays of some of the finest early American copper coins in existence, and think you might want to do all of this in a decadent resort atmosphere, then you most certainly would have enjoyed attending this year's EAC convention...

April 26-29, 2006: Central States Numismatic Convention

We arrived in Columbus on Wednesday morning and were one of the few (only?) dealers to stay until Sunday morning, thus not missing a single moment of exciting midwestern numismatic activity...

April 6-8, 2006: Atlanta ANA

First the really important part: Thursday evening I had dinner at Canoe, a restaurant about 10 miles from the show, which had been recommended by coin dealer-gourmet Andy Lustig on the PCGS forum...

March 16-18, 2006: Baltimore Show

This week its going to be down and dirty: If you've read our last several Road Reports, you'll know that we are not prone to hype or hyperbole, so when we say that we returned home Saturday evening from Baltimore still reeling from what was the best show we have ever had (by a significant margin), we mean it...

March 10-11, 2006: The Bay State Show in Boston

We had a 'quick-hitter' of a show this time around. Dealer set up was Thursday afternoon, we displayed all day Friday and then packed-up mid-afternoon on Saturday...

March 1-2, 2006: Palm Beach Show

I hope no one has been waiting for a long and exuberant write up about the Palm Beach Show in which phrases like 'white-hot market' and 'we had our greatest selling show ever' would appear...

February 9-11, 2006: Long Beach Expo

In what surely must be the unlikeliest of travel stories, we returned from the Long Beach Expo on Sunday flying from California directly into the blizzard here in New England and actually arrived a few minutes ahead of schedule...

January 28, 2006: Heritage’s Jules Reiver Sale

We just returned from one absolute endurance test of an auction - the $8.5 million Jules Reiver Collection auction conducted by Heritage and held at their Dallas headquarters...

January 16, 2006: Stack’s Ford XIII Auction

The latest installment of the John J. Ford collection – the French Colonial Coins and Tokens and Betts Medals Part I - came to auction at Stack’s on Monday in frigid New York City...

January 6-10, 2006: FUN Show

We returned from Orlando late Saturday night after a nice week at the show and the related auctions. Our overall assessment is as follows: Sales were very strong as everyone seemed to be in a buying mood...

December 8-11, 2005: Baltimore Show

We just returned from the Baltimore Show and are still sorting through our new purchases and following up on a number of new deals that came up during the week...

October 19, 2005: Stack's Ford XII Auction

Wasn't it just yesterday I was sitting in a cramped room breathlessly waiting for Ford I to begin? Actually that was 2 years ago...

 


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