New York: American Numismatic Society, 1947. 4to, original black and blue cloth, gilt. vi, 74 pages; title printed in red and black; 4 fine photographic plates. Fine. [with] Clapp, George H. HANDWRITTEN LETTER TO HOWARD R. NEWCOMB DATED NOVEMBER 5, 1932. Single ruled sheet of notepad paper [21.5 by 14.5 cm], perforate edge at top, written upon both sides but unsigned. Fine. Item #7018
The last of the classic pre-Sheldon works on large cents, with a letter from one author to the other. This handsomely produced collaborative work filled the gaps and (combined with the works of Chapman and Crosby, as well as the individual publications of Clapp and Newcomb) established for the first time a reliable series of works covering all United States large cents. It features four excellent photographic prints depicting superior specimens of all varieties, some of which were loaned by Henry Hines and AC. Gies. Clain-Stefanelli 12274. In the letter, Clapp closely describes three 1793 cents from the Dr. French collection that he had recently purchased from H.A. Sternberg, in one case sketching the location of a small nick that serves to identify the piece. He discussed tracing the provenances back to the Kline (Vicksburg), Earle and Bement collections, noting that it is “Lots of fun trying to trace fine cents.” He contrasts the cents with the descriptions they received from B. Max Mehl in the French catalogue, which Clapp famously mocked (“Mehl says the box is marked $1000. Some box sez I”). Letter ex Charles Davis’s sale of December 5, 2020 (lot 36); ex David Fanning Library.