1899 Morgan Dollar Obverse, Images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions      1899 Morgan Dollar Reverse, Images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions

Images courtesy of Heritage Numismatic Auctions

Convention Chairman's

Fall 2015 - Message

At our 76th Anniversary Convention, the Board of Governors adopted a recommendation made by myself and the bourse chairman that we inaugurate a program to subsidize group charter bus trips to our convention for CSNS member clubs. The central feature is that CSNS will issue a rebate of $300 to clubs sponsoring a day trip to the convention and $500 to those sponsoring an overnight trip. Sharing a common experience with friends is one of the components of any sort of convention, so I hope that as many of our member clubs as possible will avail themselves of this new opportunity.

I'll be in charge of administering the bus charter subsidy program, so if your club would like to apply, please email me at kfoley2@wi.rr.com. I'll reply with an application that outlines all the terms of the offer. There is a total limit of $2,500 in grants, so acting sooner, rather than later, makes a great deal of sense.

For 2016, Education Director Ray Lockwood and I will be cooperating to bring a two-day Chicago History Educational Symposium to our convention. It will be held on Friday and Saturday and feature 6-7 programs about various aspects of Chicago history presented by members of the Chicago and Illinois academic communities. For the past four years we've had especially well-received lectures about the Civil War era at our convention. Some of the presentations focused on numismatics, while others emphasized economic, political or military history. During this four-year run we had probably 25+ talks, all of which were quite well attended. In fact, much better so than purely numismatic presentations have been at our past Anniversary Conventions.

Lockwood and I hope to continue this record of success and look forward to assembling a roster of speakers and topics that will enhance all of your convention experiences.

I want to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Chicago Coin Club, who presented me with their Medal of Merit at our just-concluded event. This was an especially meaningful experience for me. I've long felt that the Chicago Coin Club was the model that other clubs would be well-advised to emulate. Quite simply, they just plain really do what a coin club ought to. At a number of numismatic shows and conventions in the Chicago area, including our own, they have for many years held CCC meetings that featured speakers of national stature as numismatic authorities and researchers. Rather than being victims of goal displacement, they've maintained a clear focus on what being a numismatic organization ought to be about, the sharing of knowledge and having some good old fashioned fun and enjoyment revolving around a subject matter area of mutual interest. Receiving recognition from this group that I've long admired will have a special meaning to me in the years ahead. So….. thank you!

If you were at our convention just a few months ago, you likely noticed a number of displays featuring the names of our convention sponsors. Producing a real convention that is about much more than just being a big coin show is an expensive undertaking. Our convention sponsors have demonstrated a willingness to contribute financially to the success of the event in a way that helps us add and sustain features of the convention that by their nature are not self-financing. Our sponsors at the 2015 event deserve a hearty "thank you" from everyone who came. Without the additional financial support that they provide, our convention would not be the broad experience for everyone that it is. Carter Numismatics, Quad City Coin, Heritage Auctions, Professional Coin Grading Service, the Mark Petty Foundation, Jay King, Coleman Foster, the Jonathan K. Kern Co., SilverTowne and NICS, our book and supply dealer, as well as Coinweek.com, all went above and beyond in adding to what the 76th Anniversary Convention could offer each and every person who came. None of these sponsors had to do what they did to enhance the convention experience for everyone who came. I hope that our members will take the time to let each of these sponsors know that you noticed and appreciate their altruism.

Normally I confine myself to comments about our convention or CSNS in general, but thinking about the generosity of our own convention sponsors leads me to give a tip of the hat to someone who demonstrated a similar spirit at a numismatic event having nothing at all to do with the Central States Numismatic Society. As most of you are likely aware, Lyn Knight, a long-time member of CSNS, whose professional numismatic career began when he was still in high school, is the owner of the International Paper Money Show, the senior such event catering to collectors of collectable currency.

At his just-concluded show Lyn once again organized what is an annual feature at the IPMS, a charity poker tournament. In order to participate one had to pay a $200 entry fee. Where did this money go? Not to Lyn or his auction company or show, but to a Kansas City charity known as Operation Breakthrough. Lyn's own words describe it quite succinctly ... "a local Kansas City organization that helps children of working mothers still living below the poverty level to receive food, education, child care, dental care and psychological care allowing them to see a brighter future."

The numismatic world is quite literally a sea of money. It is refreshing to see people who think about how such resources can be used to do some good rather than seeking to accumulate more and then still more and more beyond that.