Numismatic Bibliophile Frank Katen dies

January 24, 2001 By ekr

Numismatic Bibliophile Frank Katen dies

Frank J. Katen, noted American numismatic bibliophile, died January 21, 2001, on his 98th birthday.

“Frank had a long and distinguished affiliation with the American Numismatic Association (ANA) and the numismatic hobby,” says ANA Executive Director Edward C. Rochette. “From the moment he joined the ANA in 1942, Frank supported the collector, and his work to maintain the integrity of dealers was, without question, greatly appreciated by all.”

Katen began his involvement in numismatics with “old pennies,” says his wife, Laurese. He went to a coin store, bought a folder and began filling it. “When he found he was unable to fill some of the holes, he went back to the store and found coins, like a 1914-D, for sale for $2,” Laurese Katen continues. “He then decided he would read up on numismatics, and, being a voracious reader, he began buying books that would become his great library.”

Born in Bronx, New York, in 1903, Katen began dealing in numismatic material in 1938 and was ANA Life Member 132. In 1945 he opened a coin shop in New Haven, Connecticut, and a year later he became secretary of the American Coin Dealers Association, which was designed to benefit the collector and dealer. Although the group eventually disbanded, it helped lay the foundation for today’s Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG). Katen also was a founding member of the International Association of Professional Numismatists (IAPN), which was created in 1951.

In 1977 Katen and his wife donated their time to appraise the ANA Library, valuing the then-11,280-title collection at more than $200,000. Last August Katen donated a substantial number of books and catalogs to the Association’s Library.

Katen and his wife, who moved to Maryland in the early 1970s, were the first to jointly receive the ANA’s Medal of Merit, in 1978. He also received the ANA Presidential Award in 1993 and was honored the following year by the American Numismatic Society, which granted him a life membership. Katen was a member of a number of numismatic organizations, including the Royal Numismatic Society, Numismatic Bibliomania Society, New York Coin Club, Montgomery County (Maryland) Coin Club, Metropolitan Washington Numismatic Association and the former Middle Atlantic Numismatic Association (MANA), which became part of Eastern States Numismatic Association – a co-sponsor of the ANA World’s Fair of Money® in Philadelphia last summer.

Katen is survived by his wife; two daughters, Dr. Frances Katen Burke of Boston, Massachusetts, and Ruby Goldsand of Virginia Beach, Virginia; a son, Frank Katen Jr. and a stepson, Larry Keith Pusey, both of Silver Spring, Maryland; a sister, Anita Katen Richau of Las Vegas, Nevada; a brother, Michael Katen of Florida; a step-brother Ferdinand Grayson of New Orleans, Louisiana; six grandchildren; and three great grandchildren.

Funeral services were set for January 24 in Silver Spring, Maryland. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Frank Katen’s memory to the American Lung Association of Maryland, 14435 Cherry Lane Ct., Laurel, MD 20707; or to the ANA Library, 818 N. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs, CO 80903-3279.

Originally Release Date: January 24, 2000
ANA Contacts: Phone: 719-482-9872
Return to top