It’s only been a week since my last CWL message, but it feels like so much longer. I can’t pinpoint exactly why, although I’m sure that it’s some combination of the ongoings at DLRC, the political changes, and the overall shifts in the numismatic universe (I’m going to ignore the issues with my Volunteer Football team). While we’re still an estimated 6 months away from our first major show (I’m personally hoping for sooner), the market seems to have really picked up in activity. The high quality coin shortage issues we were having seem to have dissipated quite a bit. With the holidays ending, dealers have returned to work and collectors are back to honing their collections. As a result, we’re buying coins left and right once again and while the quantity may not be impressive, the quality certainly is!

This is a blessing for our imaging staff as you can only photograph so many coins in a day. A few years ago we shifted away from scanning images of coins and switched to exclusively using cameras. While this slowed down our imaging productivity, it improved the quality of our images dramatically. Because of this shift, it’s difficult to produce the quantity of images that we’d like, but with our focus on showing you what we’d want to see when buying a coin, we definitely feel the change was worthwhile. As a coin buyer during the pandemic, I find myself checking out photos of coins on MANY websites and I also get photographs of coins sent to me via text message, Facebook, email, and other venues. I’ve become more and more analytical in viewing these photos in past months and as a collector, I know the importance of an accurate photograph. While it will never be as good as holding the coin in-hand, we knew we had to make improvements to further the hobby and instill trust in our customers. The technologies are there to be had (that’s exactly why we jumped on nuTilt), but I find myself frustrated that our industry is still lagging behind in this very important regard. I don’t know how to encourage growth along these lines, but I think that it’s an essential step in numismatics nonetheless.

While we all love coin shows, the better we get with this technology the faster growth will be in the hobby. Perhaps that’s why modern coins have become all the rage recently. It could be due to their availability, but it must be noted that they are much easier to image as opposed to classic coins. As a historian, I value the classics and really want to encourage the hobby’s overall interest in rare US coins. In that spirit, DLRC is doing everything we can to get accurate, high quality images in front of our collectors and the hobby can only benefit from others doing the same.

Jumping over from imaging to our shipping department. There were actually a pleasant among of understanding responses regarding our December Shipping Delay. We were doing something that might have hurt our business over the holidays, but we felt it imperative to give ourselves and our clients reassurance regarding their purchases and investments. Fortunately, we didn’t see a slowdown in orders, and we've now started seeing the missing packages finding their ways to their destinations (or back to us somehow). My three favorite happenings this week:

1.    A check postmarked December 8th arrived on Tuesday. 43 Days to arrive from the West Coast.

2.    A check from Norfolk, VA (literally 5 miles away) took over 8 days to arrive at our PO Box.

3.    An order from July that never made it to its destination in New York showed up on our doorstep yesterday. The buyer has long been refunded, but when this kind of thing happens it just causes you to shake your head in wonder.

Overall, the floodgates of mail seem to be stabilizing and if you are expecting a package from us, we appreciate your purchase and we’ll throw a little more pixie dust on your package to hopefully get it there a bit faster this week.

I’ve rambled a touch longer than intended, but please know that we are truly honored that you choose to do business with us and we hope to be able to serve you at some point in the near future. As for now, please enjoy some highlights from this week’s auction, our upcoming Super Sunday Auction, and pieces from our website of all values, sizes, but not shapes…

Thanks again and have a wonderful week!

John

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