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The Flipside with Robert R. Van Ryzin

Knowledge Shouldnt be Avoided
July 26, 2010

I edit two magazines for coin collectors (Coins and Coin Prices) and one for paper money collectors (Bank Note Reporter). As such, in June I attended the International Paper Money Show in Memphis, Tenn. This year's IPMS was the first to be run by Lyn Knight and show chairman Doug Davis. A major highlight as far as I was concerned was the number of educational opportunities.

On Friday and Saturday of the show, experts from all areas of the currency field gave delightful, illustrated presentations free for all to attend. With so many scheduled, I couldn’t make it to all of them, but I did attend quite a few.

Leading into this show and aware of the wide range of educational opportunities being offered (including several excellent programs at club meetings and an author’s forum), we asked paper money collectors in a poll question whether or not they attend educational forums at paper money shows. It was disappointing to see the results. Only 14 percent checked “yes.”

If those figures are reflective of the hobby, it’s a shame. In the nearly 25 years I’ve been with Krause Publications, I’ve attended hundreds of these presentations, about paper money and coins, and I’m always intrigued by what other collectors have learned and are willing to share.

Knowledge is the key to success in this hobby and those who pass by these opportunities are making a mistake.

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About the Author
Robert R. Van Ryzin has been a coin collector for 30 years. He has served as editor of Krause Publications Coins and Coin Prices magazines since 1994. He joined the firm in 1986 after obtaining a master of fine arts degree in history from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Prior to becoming a magazine editor, he worked on World Coin News as a staff member and later served as managing editor of Numismatic News. Van Ryzin, whose specialty is U.S. coinage history, is also the award-winning author of the book Crime of 1873: The Comstock Connection (Krause Publications, 2001), as well as two earlier titles, Twisted Tails: Sifted Fact, Fantasy and Fiction from U.S. Coin History (Krause Publications, 1995) and Striking Impressions: A Visual Guide to Collecting U.S. Coins (Krause Publications, 1992).

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