$tarCollector's Blog

16 Feb 2022

What Are Numismatics?

Young Numismatists Exchange | $tarCollector

Novice Numismatics blog

FEB, 2022

Note: there is no Counter Action for this article, I hope the length can make up for this

Hey fellow YNs and ANA members,
Today's blog is going to be generally about numismatic beginnings, how to start collecting, and my collecting story. We're going to start with numismatic beginnings. Translated, that means, how did you start collecting. I refer to this as the "spark".

The Spark. The "spark" is generally the reason why you started collecting, whether it be a relative that taught you about coins, or just an interest in a coin which led you to wonder about coins and eventually start collecting.

My "spark" started a few years ago when I went down to my Grandfather's house(down the street from our house) and he, being an avid coin collector like his father was before him, and he asked me to go through a coffee can of Cents. He explained that '82 and before Cents had more copper so they were worth two cents. Then any coins with a reverse older than the Lincoln Memorial reverse(we know those to be wheat Cents, although did not even know that it was a different "reverse", I just thought the "tails"🙄 side had a different design.) he told me those were worth three cents, which is basically their minimum value, and to set them aside. This got me wondering enough that he showed me his steel Cent, his Prestige sets(which I thought were just proof sets, some random set of really shiny coins, that is what I thought proofs were, I knew from when I had previously sorted coins with him, although I never got hooked until this time) and some of his vault of coins. As soon as I got home, I told my Mom about my experiences and asked if we had a coin book. Turns out, we had a '71 Red Book. If you've read that introduction on newer Reds, you know how it makes you invested in coins. Well the '71 Red had the same appealing intro(with a few different things about it, it is after all, 50 years old! But still appealing)and I was almost fully hooked, almost. I basically wanted any coin info possible, but I didn't know that much to start really collecting. One of my parent's co-workers, who was a numismatist, first told me about "W" quarters, and then I was closer to being hooked than before. I went to my Grandfather's house again multiple times to "sort coins". Eventually, he started me on a ATB Quarters album. He bought $500 bags of quarters which I searched through completely. I didn't know it, but I was CRH(technically "coin bag hunting" or CBH). I had almost completely forgotten the "W" quarters until I found one! I was very excited about it, but I later found out it wasn't that exciting. I searched through $1000, or about 4000 quarters and found, in total, 6 "W"s. No silver was found, but that's for the CRH who searches through even more quarters. That was my "spark" for coin collecting, and my collection has only grown ever since.

How to Start Collecting
This is a much disputed thing, but my personal opinion is that the best way to start is investment coins. This means to go to a dealer or buy a coin at a great price online. Any coin that is worth more than what you bought it for is good, but be warned that scams do exist. Then you could possibly sell that coin for a little less than Blue Book/Greysheet value, so you can draw people in, and then you can make a profit. If you are an experienced collector, I think you are saying to yourself right now, "coin collectors don't try to make quick profit! They save their coins." This is true and I agree, but making your budget larger can be helpful. It does help CRH and just helps anyone buying coins. If you end up wanting to keep the coins you buy, then that can be good too. But remember to pace yourself, if you spend too much money at one time, it can cause problems.

Coin Roll Hunting(CRH) can be very profitable, I highly recommend it. If you do not know what that is, it is when you go to your local bank and buy rolls of circulated coins and search through them. I have found a few wheaties so far, and all you have to do is add a Cent to the roll in place of the one you took out. A Red Book is recommended to find these rarities.

For some YNs, you may not even have a budget, but there are many ways to get free coins. I will be in CO Springs, so I checked the official catalogue of events and found that at one table, #504, there's a special gift for YNs. Besides that, there is the great Treasure Trivia where you answer trivia and get coins. Table #475 in the back I think is where you will find info concerning that. These free coins at the NMS could help a struggling collector with a low budget, or any collector at that rate, so CO Springs is a great place to be March 10-12. For more info concerning that please read my blog, Going to the National Money Show? Oh, by the way, did any of you get an email saying you won a lot in the YN auction, if so which lot? Please post in comments below if so.Thanks for reading,

Novice Numismatics Writing Team

This article in this series is written by Novice Numismatics Writing Team



Level 5

Same start as me. My grandpa always used a zip scope to look at coins and he would let me help. Lots explaining why he was doing it.


Level 5

I also found this post interesting even though I have only been “seriously collecting” for about 4 years now. I’m far from being a “YN” but who says “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”? Thanks for sharing ! I’m already thinking about my next post !


Level 5

That was a great blog! I like the idea of a “spark”. Thanks for the blog!

It's Mokie

Level 6

The Spark, I like that description, it has caused a flame to burn steady in my heart for over 50 years. The Spark, it never leaves you, once it takes hold. Thanks for the thoughts, especially interesting from a collector in his tadpole stage.


Level 6

I can't read blogs with no spaces or paragraphs. Sorry.


Level 6

Interesting thoughts. Enjoyed it. ; )

I. R. Bama

Level 5

Interesting blog. I've been working on a developmental model of the numismatist.


Level 5

The spark. Like hearing about how people got started. Pocket change is a great place to start.


Level 7

Good blog. Enjoyed reading it. Use paragraphs it makes it easy in the eyes. When you come to the last world go down two or three spaces then hit the bar that splits the words go over a few spaces and start again . Keep up the good work!!

AC coin$

Level 6

Good work great blog .


Level 6

Great blog, and thoughtful insight.

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