US Coins

Annual CSNS show returns after two-year hiatus

A sense of relief swept over board members of the Central States Numismatic Society when activity began to ramp up around the 83rd anniversary convention.

Canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the long-standing show was finally back to some semblance of normal. The event was held at the Discovery Hall of the Schaumburg (Illinois) Convention Center.

The gathering marked the debut of the organization’s newest convention manager. Larry Shepherd was appointed to the position of convention manager by the board of directors in August of 2020. The event also marked the return of PNG Day, sponsored by the Professional Numismatists Guild, who opened the activity. PNG Day was connected with the convention until 2013 and had planned a return in 2021.

The opening of the bourse floor on Thursday saw a long line at registration, delaying some showgoers and causing some concerns by visitors. Staff members worked to handle the process and eliminate issues.

Once on the floor, visitors wasted no time getting down to business as many dealers reported favorable transaction totals. The spacious bourse floor suggested lower attendance, but it became more of a case of quality versus quantity as measured through business conducted.

A few special attractions were on the “must see” list for many. At the top of the list, GreatCollections offered a “Big 4” display at their location, marked by a large banner. The four coins, displayed together in public for the first time, were the finest 1804 Draped Bust dollar, the Eliasberg 1913 Liberty Head 5-cent coin, the Eliasberg 1894-S Barber dime and a 1943 Lincoln cent wrong planchet error in bronze.

Professional Coin Grading Service featured a special exhibit adjacent to their grading location. Steve Ellsworth and Walter J. Husak each selected 30 coins from their respective large cent collections and displayed the items side-by-side in a PCGS Registry Showdown. The two collectors own the #1 and #2 All-Time Finest sets (all eras) in the PCGS Set Registry category dedicated to Large Cents Die Variety by Sheldon, Circulation Strikes (1793–1814). Throughout the day, Husak and Ellsworth would meet at the display to talk about their collection and visitors would decide who had the better set. The final vote tally saw Husak’s collection prevail by a slight margin with nearly 160 total votes cast.

The final day of the show provided a period of recognition. Former Coin World editor Beth Deisher received the Q. David Bowers Award, given for unselfish devotion, scholarly contributions and investments of time and resources made to the hobby by numismatic professionals.

Educational exhibit winners included Michael Kodysz (Best of Show), Thomas J. Uram (John J. Pittman Most Educational) and Hayden Howard (First Time Exhibitor).

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