Archive | July, 2016

Summer Reading (and the upcoming ANA Show)

25 Jul

Summertime is the perfect time to delve into a little lighter reading as you relax by the pool during your summer vacation. Below are some cool numismatic reads that I’ve enjoyed over the years—they’re a fast read that won’t bog you down! In an upcoming blog, our interns, Emily and Lola, will tell you about their summer reading of numismatically related books; in the meantime, check out my recommendations.

Where can you find us next month? We have a table at the ANA World’s Fair of Money show in Anaheim, CA, from August 9 to 12. It’s a great time to bring your consignments for our next auction in November. Or, just stop by and say hello.

If you’ve got a good read to share, by all means let us know what it is. Until then, here are some of my picks:

One Coin is Never Enough by Michael S. Shutty, Jr. Ph.D.

One Coin Is Never Enough

As the title suggests, coin collecting can become habit forming! Mike Shutty takes you through the sometimes logical, sometimes nutty world of coin collecting. As he says at the beginning, “It should be clear by now that, as coin collectors, we believe in magic! We love our coins and treat them accordingly no matter how irrational it appears to onlookers. The coins in our collections are special. They have stories to tell, and we marvel at their survivorship, rarity and beauty. Through the act of collecting them, we transform the mundane into the marvelous.”


City of Silver by Annamaria Alfieri

City of Silver

The story of the scandal at the Potosi mint in the mid-1600s is well documented and it makes a great story because people love to read about misfortunes of that proportion. It’s also the stuff of legend and conjecture, as in the case of City of Silver, which is a fictional account of the backstory of the Potosi mint scandal. It’s very readable and certainly enjoyable to those who love Potosi coins.


Caliban’s Shore by Stephen Taylor


Calibran's Shore

This is a bit deeper a read because of the extensive research the author conducted to give an authentic portrayal of the shipwreck of the Grosvenor, the finest East Indiaman of its day that was sailing from India when it became shipwrecked off the coast of southeast Africa in 1782. The details of the fate of the 123 surviving passengers (from a crew of 150 total) is harrowing and sad, especially given that only 18 eventually survived. From the privations of losing everything aboard ship to dealings with native Indians inland, it’s a wonder that anyone lived to tell the tale.


Pirate Latitudes by Michael Crichton

Pirate Latitudes

I almost read this book twice! It’s hard to argue with success, and Michael Crichton knows all about that. This novel, set in the swashbuckling pirate days of Port Royal, Jamaica in the mid-1600s, depicts the Hatfield-and-McCoy relationship between the Spanish and English. The characters and scenery are vivid, and you almost feel like you’re there. It’s hard to put down this book.


There are hundreds if not thousands of interesting books pertaining to maritime history, coins, shipwrecks, and all things pirate, so my selections are but a tip of the very large iceberg. Next month, you’ll hear from our interns about the books that they’ve read!


My experience at the July FUN show by Emily Sedwick

22 Jul

I am Emily Sedwick, daughter of Daniel Sedwick, and for the past 2 summers I have had the great privilege of being employed at my father’s company. I have always been exposed to the world of numismatics growing up, accompanying my father to the office and even to a few FUN shows, but it wasn’t until I joined the Sedwick Coins crew that I found a real appreciation for the business.

Numismatics is not just about the coins but the history that goes along with them. Lola (my fellow intern) and I get plenty of history lessons from Cori in the office, but for those of you who are new to the business or collect coins as a hobby, the FUN show is an excellent place to learn firsthand. Although the July FUN show was not my first coin show, it was my first since I started working for Sedwick Coins.

Dan and Emily at Summer FUN show (2)

On Thursday, the first day of the show, Lola and I spent time manning the cases and conversing with fellow dealers. It was an honor being able to introduce myself as Dan’s daughter as he is a well-respected dealer. Many times I would introduce myself to a dealer only to discover I had already met him or her as a child!

Dan and Emily at Summer FUN show

Everyone at the show was friendly and excited to have a young person in the business. Talking to and learning from such venerable collectors and businessmen was priceless work experience for a seventeen year old. Lola and I also attended a seminar called “Consumer Protection Update” by Tony Swicer and Sandy Pearl. This was a great talk for any person interested in the coin world because it cautioned against the prevalence of counterfeit currency and provided tips to avoid common traps.

Dan, Emily and Lola at Summer FUN show

I was not at the show on Friday so Lola took over and attended another seminar on foreign coins. She also started a small project organizing coins from a collection consigned to us that I was able to continue on Saturday. One of the coolest parts of the show was watching my father give an interview for Coin Week online magazine. He got to show off a gold disk consignment from the 1715 Fleet and talk about upcoming shows and auctions. Before we packed up for the weekend, I got to walk around and view the merchandise from the other dealers. Most of the booths were bustling with dealers making consignments, but what I found really great was the number of families and curious new learners that attend the shows as well.

The FUN show displayed to me a diverse group of people who are passionate about what they do and who encourage anyone willing to learn. So whether you’re a coin dealer, collector, or novice eager to learn, the FUN show is the perfect place to immerse yourself into a world of treasures.


Summer FUN Convention 2016 Show Report by Lola Berastegui

18 Jul

My name is Lola Berastegui, and I’m 16 years old. This summer I have been working as an intern at Daniel Frank Sedwick, LLC. After a month of working for the company, I had the opportunity to attend a coin show, the FUN (for Florida United Numismatists) show, in Orlando.

The FUN show organizers managed to put together an excellent 10th Annual Summer show with opportunities and learning experiences for everyone. The doors opened for set up Wednesday, and I was not there but Daniel and Cori were busy setting up the table. Dealers from all over the country had booth numbers, ours being #735, and the tables were set next to one another other with banners at the top showing the company names and location. On each table were metal cases with glass that contained dealers’ material. Most cases displayed coins, but there was also old paper money and even ancient artifacts and fossils.


Booth at Summer FUN Show 2016

Dan Sedwick at booth at summer FUN show

There were also a lot of activities for kids like panning for gold and spinning a wheel for prizes.

Mora Panning for Gold at Summer FUN Show 2016

Augi’s daughter panning for gold at the FUN show

Thursday was my first day at the show. Emily picked me up and we followed Daniel and Augi to the show. After we parked, we went from one side of the convention center to the hall where the show was being held. Before we could enter we had to go through registration and get our picture taken for our dealer badge.  We spent most of the show interacting with buyers and sellers and we attended a couple of seminars.

My first seminar was on Thursday at 1:00 PM called “Consumer Protection Update,” by Tony Swicer and Sandy Pearl. The speakers talked about how to watch out for overpriced or misrepresented items and it was aimed mostly at beginning collectors. I also attended a second seminar on Friday at the same time called “Fun With Foreign Coins,” by Bob Hurst (the current Vice President of FUN). Hurst talked to us about coins from all over the world and how affordable and interesting it can be to collect them. He showed us a variety of coins depicting different animals, plants, etc. He says there is something for every hobbyist and budget!

Lola and Emily at Lecture during summer FUN show 2016

Lola and Emily Attending a Seminar

Friday at the FUN show was very similar, but I spent a lot of the time putting coins from a collection we got into flips and labeling them. This collection will eventually be auctioned in our upcoming November auction. We had also just sold some items that we listed on eBay the week before, and there was a USPS booth so we got to ship the lots that needed to be shipped from there.  I later left around 2:00 PM. I can honestly say it was an outstanding experience and I’m looking forward to the January FUN show.

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