Growing up I was a stamp collector. I spent many many hours trying to find inexpensive stamps from around the world for my albums. They were a great way to learn geography and about changing geopolitical lines.
Coins and currency became a part of my consciousness when I heard a talk several years ago about all the different currencies that were used before the Federal Reserve was created and “a” currency resulted. It was one of the best talks I’d ever heard in terms of truly being eye-opening about an element of historical context that I previously just had no awareness of.
The talk was reinforced as I did more and more land research and found deeds where Spanish milled dollars, current money, specie, Virginia currency and many more different types of currency were used in these land transactions.
Basically, it really opened my eyes to the idea of not assuming that just because we have “a” currency (of course, Bitcoin and other purveyors of digital currency are working to change the landscape and that’s a topic for another day), that doesn’t mean it was always that way.
So, a news item “ANS Partners with HathiTrust for Open Access Publications” caught my eye.
In a sweeping effort to make its older and out-of-print publications available to the public as Open Access, The American Numismatic Society has partnered with HathiTrust (http://www.hathitrust.org/about). As a result of this partnership scans of nearly 550 ANS titles – including the American Journal of Numismatics, Numismatic Literature, Numismatic Notes and Monographs, and stand-alone monographs have become fully readable and downloadable to anyone who wants them under a Creative Commons, non-commercial, attribution, share-alike license.
In fact, a search on colonial currency and related terms brings up quite a few resources.
Did any particular article or publication regarding Numismatics catch your eye?
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