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Learn About the Field of Numismatics

The field of numismatics is an exciting and interesting one that allows you the ability to collect pieces of art while learning the history of each individual piece. Knowledge is the greatest tool when looking at, admiring and examining a collection of coins. Along with this knowledge comes an in-depth studying of the field in general as well as an intense level of familiarity of the market and the various options that are available. This knowledge alone makes you into an extremely savvy consumer.Jean-Baptiste Mathon (1786 – 1868),  FRENCH ARCHAEOLOGIST AND NUMISMATIST

Anyone can become a numismatist and as well as being an enjoyable and enlightening hobby, this field provides society with a better understanding of how money has evolved throughout the years. In order to become a numismatist, all you have to do is begin studying and collecting coins. There are various organizations and associations you can join and become a member of, but this is not necessary in order to be able to label yourself as a numismatist. Once you have made the decision to study and collect coins, first understand that your collection will possible never be complete and you will not have a large collection overnight.

Start off your new hobby by reading on the different types of coins and studying their history. If you are a beginner, start with the pocket change you already have and go back further as you become familiar with the concept. Learn about the various materials that coins are made of along with how they differ in value and the reason behind this. As you study the coins and the history of them, you will find that just because a coin is older does not make it more valuable than newer coins.

Note the date each coin was made along with the mint place. For instance, if your coin has a 1925 and the letter “D”, this simply means that it was made in Denver in 1925. Other letters that represent mint locations include “S” for San Francisco and “P” for Philadelphia. Refer to a coin manual for further information on other locations and the rarity of each. If the date is worn off of the coin, another way to find its level of rarity is by referring to the image that is engraved on it. For instance, the nickel did not have a picture of Thomas Jefferson on it before 1938; instead, it had a picture of an Indian head.

One thing to remember when collecting your coins is that cleaning the coins may reduce its value. This is especially important when it is worth it to keep the coin for preservation. An example is the diminishing value of a $50 dime to $10 just because it has been washed. Always continue to study the value and history of the coins you collect as there is an ongoing value of this knowledge. The field of numismatics can become quite addictive, so be ready for a long and interesting hobby.


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