John W. Adams will be presented with the 2014 Archer M. Huntington
Award by the American Numismatic Society for excellence in numismatic
scholarship on April 26.
Adams will be presented with the award on April 26 at the
Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston. The event will include his
presentation of the Silvia Mani Hurter Memorial Lecture, titled
"A Recidivist Collector," and will be followed by a
reception in his honor.
Adams research in the field of numismatics focuses on American and
European medals, numismatic literature, and large cents. In his early
research, his approach is largely bibliographical. His Monographs
on Varieties of United States Large Cents, 1793–1794, published
in 1976, provides a concise introduction to the various key
publications in this field, notes the ANS.
His two volumes of United States Numismatic Literature (1982,
1990) are among the most useful bibliographical aids on American
numismatic auction catalogs available, according to the ANS, which
notes that, in particular, Adams erudite introductions to the various
collectors are widely quoted.
In the last 15 years, Adams has focused primarily on medals. His
book The Indian Peace Medals of George III, or, His Majestys
Sometime Allies, published in 1999, demonstrates his breadth of
knowledge, according to the ANS, which adds that "through careful
numismatic analysis Adams was able to expand our knowledge in this series."
In 2010 Adams wrote Medallic Portraits of Admiral Vernon: Medals
Sometimes Lie with Fernando Chao and in collaboration with Anne
Bentley. This work provides a study of the many varieties of the
Vernon series, which often differ only in tiny details, provides
historical context, offering a concordance with the many prior studies
and much more.
"What distinguishes John Adams from other writers is his
passion for history, a beautiful, academically correct writing style,
and diligence in seeking out overlooked historical and numismatic
sources," said Dr. Jere Bacharach, chairman of the ANS Huntington Committee.
Adams has served as a Trustee of the Massachusetts Historical
Society, where he was instrumental in conserving its coin cabinet, and
as president of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society and the Medal
Collectors of America.
He is a fellow of the American Antiquarian Society, as well a fellow
of the American Numismatic Society where he also served on its Board
of Trustees and was an active chairman of the Library Committee.