President's Message 2004

Hello everyone out there in numismaland. Ok, so I take a few liberties with the English language, but, we do have a specialized hobby that demands a specialized vocabulary.

I always wonder what to talk about in this communication. First this has been an interesting year to say the least. Everyone in the Pacific Northwest was involved in the National Money Show held last March in Portland. I for one had a great time in the doing and in visiting old friends and meeting new ones. Our connection with the ANA has never been better or more important, more about that later.

Secondly, American numismatics in general seems to be doing quite well. I say seems as there is a little Federal legislation that has been passed that could change that in a way we would never have thought possible. That legislation is called: Emergency Protection for Iraqi Antiquities Act. It was instigated and supported by the following archaeological organizations including:

  • The Archaeological Institute of America
  • The American Academic Research Institute in Iraq (TAARII) (formerly American Association for Research in Baghdad)
  • The American Schools of Oriental Research
  • The Society for American Archaeology
  • The American Anthropological Association
  • The College Art Association

While this all seems innocent enough the opposite is true. It was designed to address the looting of Iraqi museums immediately following the "end of hostilities" in Iraq. As we now know, in fact most of the items that were taken were recovered or not even stolen but hidden away for protection.

The archaeological community in fact was using this as a pretext to initiate an out and out ban on anyone who has a cultural item over 100 years old in their possession. They say they are the only ones qualified to handle and study such items and you as a collector are not.

What you say, "I only collect US coins and tokens, and this only affects ancient coins." The grim truth is that they want to ban all collecting of cultural items over 100 years old. If you collect US Coins, Hard Times or Civil War tokens, currency, artifacts ( Civil War bullets etc.) you can be affected. In fact they went after a major auction in London and forced the withdrawal of a stamp collection with items over 100 years old. At this point it is too late to stop it as the legislation was signed by President Bush interestingly enough on December 7, 2004.

There is a grass roots organization formed specifically to fight further inroads into our freedom to collect coins. That group is called The Ancient Coin Collectors Guild. The ACCG is for ALL collectors of numismatic history. It doesn't matter what you collect you can and will be affected by this type of legislation unless we support their efforts. I urge all members of the PNNA to support the ACCG. I urge you to take a look at the ACCG; the url is and give them your support. We don't need another Pearl Harbor style attack by the archeological community to wake us up. The first shot has been fired and the fleet is in big trouble.

Getting back to the ANA; POVA or the Portland Oregon Visitors Association has requested that the ANA consider returning to Portland, Oregon in 2009 or 2010. A joint task force has been formed by the PNNA and the Willamette Coin Club to pursue a bid for that contingency.

This would be partnership by both organizations to bring the ANA back to the Pacific Northwest as soon as we can. Portland is a great venue and fits within the financial guidelines of the ANA from the standpoint of the cost of the facilities. Seattle has been and continues to be too expensive a venue for the ANA. I will keep everyone informed on the progress of this venture as we have the resources and talent to put on another great ANA event.

I guess that about sums it up from me for now. I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you the best Holiday Season and a fantastic 2005. See you at the 2005 PNNA Convention.


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