“I love talking to people and learning the history and story behind the coins. The one that is worn smooth and you wonder what hands have held it and in what business was it used. It started as a hobby when I was a kid. I worked at a produce stand in Missouri and looked through the change to see what I could collect. I went to college on an Army scholarship and got a Gerber knife as a gift and got into those. Collectors all learn and look for the subtle differences that can make one worth more than the other.
Some people have something they think is worthless that is worth money. A young man walked in with a bag of coins and said, ‘I know these aren’t worth anything’ and poured them in a tray on the counter. He grabbed two Mexican 50 peso gold coins from the 1940s. Each one was 1.2 ounces of solid gold. They are worth quite a bit. I told him that he had $3-4,000 worth of coins. He got mad, called me a name and stormed out. We put them in the safe and about two hours later he came back in and apologized. His grandfather left 66 of those to his family. They Googled it and thought the coins were worthless. Google misled them and his nine-year-old niece buried the coins in the ground for treasure hunting. He called his mom and sister and told them the kids weren’t allowed outside until he could get out his metal detector. They had $80,000 worth of gold coins buried in the backyard and it took him about three weeks to find all of them. Those stories are a lot of fun.
Some people like the hunt and want to find the perfect coin. Some just want to be done with their collections. Some of us are hunters or gatherers or want to amass large piles of gold or silver. Some want to have the best of something. We are all competitive on some level. Look what I just added to my collection.
We try to teach people that is cool to have a pile of something, but it is even better to have it organized and documented so you aren’t passing down a mess to your kids. Make sure people know what is a and what it is worth and put it in a safety deposit box. No one wants to go on a treasure hunt. There was a dad who left a note in his will about things he buried and hid in the walls. They found it, but it could have easily gone another way. Burying things is more common that it should be and it is not that smart. Burying coins in the ground is one of the worst things you can do for them, especially with the rain in Mobile.
Money, gold and silver are history, economics and trade wars. They are everything we deal with today and I learn so much my holding them in my hands.”