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MaineJoe Show full post »
Thanks Joe for sponsoring the contest.  I started with coins like most old timers.  My father owned gas stations and I used to roll the coins from the vending machines, lots of coins, these stations were on I95 in Connecticut in the 60's.  It would take up most of my Sunday afternoons.  I got to keep whatever I wanted so it was more like a hoard.  When the silver disappeared in '65 and the mint started pushing "products" I lost interest. I collected minerals as well and eventually went to the Gemological Institute of America to get my degree.  Diamonds were a hot investment in the late '70's so they needed graders and since my family did not have a jewelry store like most of the students I went back to NYC to work at the GIA Gem Trade Lab.  After working there about 3 years I left to seek my fortune in gems.  On our first trip to buy emeralds in Brazil, right when they first discovered the emerald deposit in Santa Terezinha, my partner sent me to the bank to get 20K, all $100's.  When I got back from the bank about 5000 of it was old, 1928 and 1934's some '50's too all in a group.  These were not new enough, the miners might think they were not real, I needed current notes, but they looked so neat, I decided to put them in my safe box at the bank and replace them with current issues.  That was the spark.  Most of them were nothing, a few star notes, the prize was a 1934C Atlanta Mule star in UNC.  I still have it.  Living in Manhattan for 25 years I went to many shows and auctions before the internet. I am now retired and after having pretty much gone everywhere I now go no where.  I am a homebody mostly on the Bay with everyone else.   
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Thanks Joe!

My name is Mike and I am in my early 30's. I was first introduced to the numismatics hobby by my Dad over 2 decades ago. He had been collecting coins since he was a young boy. I grew up in South Florida and remember going to all sorts of shows, expos, events, and even meetings where all these adults would just look, buy, or talk about coins. He was not very interested in currency although he did keep his eyes peeled for star notes, errors, and solid serial numbers. I began collecting as a kid, with my Dad but I was more interested in gold and currency. My great uncle (my namesake) was the currency collector in the family. He passed away just over 3 years ago and I inherited his currency collection. I've retained about half of his collection and due to life circumstances have sold the other half. I had a modest currency collection before he passed and have added his remaining collection into mine. In fact, his inheritance has re-ignited my collecting which had caused me to join these forums. I've learned more in the little time here than I had thought imaginable and continue to see there is still much more.
Interested in Maryland nationals and obsoletes
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My story is much the same as everyone else.
First I started with stamps, this was around 1987, I was a kid. That was a lot of fun actually.
A few years later I switched over to coins. Going to shops and flea markets with my dad and brother on the weekends. With coins, I pretty much collected anything of interest, and filled the Whitman albums. around 1990 I bought my first piece of paper money, an obsolete note from Calais Maine, but that was not the true start of my paper money collecting. It was just one item , and I didn’t buy any more paper money for the next 29 years.
After College I resumed my coin collecting, this time focusing strictly on Barber half dollars. I did that for solid 10 years.
So it happened that one day 3 years ago I was just sitting and the thought popped into my head, unprompted: Maybe I’ll buy a nice note. That day was the beginning of the end of coin collecting for me. Flash forward now and I strictly collect paper money and I’m not looking back.
My collection is solely Maine Obsolete notes, and I still have the note I bought in an antique store 29 years ago.
SPMC PM014835
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I got my first coin (a circ 1940 merc dime) around January of 1988. I was into rocks an minerals at that time, but started getting interested in coins. 

Thr bug hit hard in early 1990, when my parents bought me 1929 to 1937P circulated buffalo nickles.  

In April 1990, I dabbled in note collecting. I was going through some $1's my mother had given as allowance to by rocks and minerals, and there was a 1963A (GC block), probably in F / low VF condition. 

By the Summer of 1991, I was a serious note collector. 

Flash forward to 1992 / 1993 (I was 16 or close to it by now), and there was a coin shop a few blocks from my high school. I would walk down on lunch break, and give them business. 

I bought my first gold coin in July 1992 ( a 1929 $2.5 Indian), and just before my 16th birthday, bought a $1 1969D with serial A44444445A on layaway. 

By the time I was 19, I had a great collection going. Some of the coins I had were : 1909S VDB in AU50BN, 1916D merc in AG3, Gem 65RD 1933 Lincoln, and 1938D Merc in 66FSB with outstanding toning, along with several early large size and small size notes. 

I sold the collection in 1997 to buy my first car, but got back into it in 1999 and though things have been turbulent, I have been a die hard collector ever since. 

In 2005, I found Derek Moffit's website and have been a contributor on and off since that time. He got me into early small size data, with a spreadsheet of 1928's. 

Today I am a researcher and collector. 

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I began collecting in the 1970's - mainly focusing on coins  - just pennies and dimes as I was only 10 years or so old when I began - did old jobs from time to time that allowed me to buy mainly from coin dealers through the mail.  Being in central Alabama and unable to travel back then - that was the only option.  I ordered a miscellaneous federal reserve note periodically as I was interested in older notes.      

My dad was the stamp collector and that's what gave me the bug to do something.   It was interesting that of the four kids my mom and dad had - only I caught the collecting bug!

As I grew older I started to focus more on currency than anything else.  Didn't stray too far from federal reserve notes, however.  

I still purchase the annual coin sets from the mint which is really the only coins I buy today.

Today I mainly on FRN's and collect all blocks - and print runs of everything except $50s and $100s.

I still have stamps - and in fact inherited my dad's collection when he died in 2009.   I still am a currency collector at heart and that's the only significant money I spend on collecting today.


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Thanks for contest. Started in late 1950’s....very cool and interesting stories.
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Russell Kaye
There are some great stories posted. I have enjoyed reading them all.

I, too, started as a stamp and coin collector during the late 1960s, when silver was still seen in circulation, along with the occasional Buffalo Nickel, usually dateless. I was aware of paper money as dad was a bank teller around 1950 and pulled a few of those large size notes out of circulation when they were presented for deposit. They were mostly $1s and $2s, 1899 and 1923 series but he had the good sense to pull out an Indian Chief and a Bison. I was fascinated and started to accumulate a few lower grade colonials and obsoletes, but still was mostly a coin collector.

I was a dealer in coins during the 1970s and 1980s and took a job with Christie's in New York in 1986, organizing and writing auction catalogs, and travelling on appraisals. I had developed a fair overall knowledge of paper currency by then, but the cataloging of Christie's consignments, particularly the obsolete currency in the archives of the American Bank Note Company as well as the 15,000 or so obsolete notes from the Western Reserve Historical Society insured that the currency used between the Revolutionary War and the Civil War would be my specialty. 

I still retain an appreciation for other types of currency and have nice little collections in most of the other currency specialties, too.

Thank you for the fun contest, Joe.
Buying, Selling Currency and Sharing Knowledge-Especially Obsoletes.
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For those who may be keeping track, 23 entries so far! Such as luck may have it, I'm away from home. So rather than ending this at midnight eastern time, it will end at midnight central time.

Good Luck Everyone!!!
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Sorry, seems I may have missed posting the May winner..... notehunter494! Congrats! PM me a mailing address and I will get right out to you. Thanks again to everyone who participated.
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Steve in Tampa
Congratulations notehunter494, and thanks again Joe for sponsoring the May contest.
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Congrats to the winner!
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Thank you for the contest!!! and Congratulations naotehunter494! That is a nice prize!

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Thanks MJ...and congrats NH.
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Yes, thank you for the games and the knowledge. Congrats notehunter494, had me at "father owned gas stations." excellent.
Tony [biggrin]
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Good Morning All.  I want to Thank You Joe for the contest and the absolutely fantastic gift.  That punch through embossing looks like it is going to go right through the 66 holder it is in.  Right up my alley as modern day rarities are one of the paper money specialties I am hooked on.  I also want to thank everyone who participated and your comments.  Yes signal6271 those gas stations....so long ago.  Have a Great Weekend Everyone.  Tom
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Tom I'm glad it found a good home. And thank you all again for participating!
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Back in 2000, I found out that my dad used to be the soldier of South Viet Nam. He got some banknotes from his dad (my grandfather) and started collecting some more though he had to go to the battle fields. Luckily he survived. He came back with a lot of interesting stories and bank notes / coins from other countries such as Thai Land, Laos or Cambodia. He also got some Military Payment series 641. I really liked the 1 dollar. We called this note "Red Dollar" in Viet Nam. I thought i should fulfill his South Viet Nam Collection. That's how i became the collector


Our South Viet Nam Collection (1955-1975)

Bonus: My dad with his Birthday Note (01 November 1954)

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Great story. So glad your father made it home safe and can enjoy collecting currency with his son.  Your father is a hero to risk his life for the sake of his country.  I just need to say I sure hope those currency album pages are not made of PVC 😬
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+ 1 👍  Great Story
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