Since ANA 2012, a fair share of my time has been spent pursuing what used to be my full time job: cataloguing. As the hired-gun early Americana cataloguing specialist at StacksBowers, I get to see the cream of the crop, writing about highlights without the drudgery of endless boxes of more pedestrian coins. As such, my contributions have typically been limited to a handful of coins. TheBaltimore auction this month is a special one though, the biggest colonial coin event since the end of the Ford sales in my estimation. Held in conjunction with the C4 Convention, the auction contains a number of important consigments, including the Vermont coppers collection of C4 denizen Dan Friedus and the circulating counterfeit Spanish colonial coin cabinet of longtime C4 member/dealer Dave Wnuck. My principal contribution to the sale was the cataloguing of three great collections: the type set of Jack Royse, part I of the legendary collection of Ted Craige, and the Fugio copper collection of my late friend and Fugio scholar Rob Retz.
The Craige, Royse, and Retz collections are so different in size, scope, and effort, but all three are unquestionably great collections. Pondering what makes them great led to an article I penned for CoinWeek.com called "The Five Aspects That Make Collections Great Or, How to Build the Next Great Collection."
Give it a read. How does your collection stack up?
If you need help bidding in the sale, I'm uniquely positioned to offer bidding representation. Drop me an email at email@example.com for help. Maybe some of what you buy in this sale will help make your collection great too.
See me in Baltimore at Table 357. My feelings will be hurt if you don't come by to say hi.