Written by: Tony Swicer
The 122nd ANA National Convention was held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, just 15 minutes from the airport on August 13-17. The weather was great with highs around 80 degrees and the low about 57 degrees. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare next to the show. There were lots of colorful flowers everywhere.
The show had about 500 dealer tables. Attendance was 9,082. There were 31 ANA staff & Board members and 19 national volunteers in attendance. The U.S. Mint & B.E.P were there along with 14 World Mints, all of the grading services and two supply dealers. Coin World, Numismatic News, Krause, and Whitman were there. The Chicago Coin Club was the host club. There were 20 club tables, the ANA Museum Showcase with the 1804 dollar, 1913 Liberty Head nickel, 1792 half disme and many other coins and paper money on display. Treasurer of the United States, Rosie Rios, was there signing new dollar bills and the U.S. Mint sold the new gold $50 Buffalo reverse proof for $1690 (3 coin max.). If you stood in line to buy the coin (2-3 hour wait), you could sell it on the floor for a $225 profit.
Stacks-Bowers auction featured the John J. Ford Jr. collection of tokens, medals and paper Americana. The run of tokens and medals was outstanding with many unique pieces from colonial to old west times along with many Canadian tokens in mint state and proof condition. Also in the auction was the Thomas Law collection of 450 early English gold coins. The auction had 18 sessions grossing about $45 million. The Heritage pre-ANA auction grossed $28 million.
The ANA had 25 seminars, the Sundman Lecture series had four seminars and there were free workshops on coin basics, coin collecting 101. The Scouting merit badge clinic had 113 attend. There were several excursions around Chicago including a rooftop seating for a Chicago Cubs game. There were 64 exhibits with Best of Show going to the man who taught the course at the ANA Summer Seminar, Larry Sekulich for "Hwenne Gold Was Smite in Coign." The first runner-up, first time exhibitor award and Peoples Choice Awards were won by Charmy Harker, for "Penny Potpourri" exhibit. She attended the course on exhibiting at the ANA summer seminar.
At the ANA Banquet Friday night, many awards were passed out and the new ANA President, VP and board were sworn in. David Lange's book, Coin Collecting Boards of the 1930's & 1940's, was given to every attendee. We also attended the ICTA Board meeting and Numismatic Ambassador Awards breakfast.
The entrance to the show was on the left front corner and the show spanned 18 aisles until you reached the club tables where we were. Many notables came by such as Chet Krause; Cliff Mishler; Ray Dillard; past ANA presidents Bill Horton, Barry Stuppler, John Wilson, Gary Lewis; and more. FUN was represented by Cindy Wibker, Bob Hurst and me. We were very successful in accepting bourse fees for the January FUN Show and we finished purchasing exhibit prizes for the January show.