This past week’s Central States Numismatic Society show was full of unexpected surprises. For me, the unpredictability of this year’s show made it one of the most exciting CSNS shows I have attended.

The day started off Thursday morning with a 2 1/2 hour drive to Schaumburg, Illinois where I met a collecting friend who was to sell some of my excess coins through his E-Bay store. One of those coins was a 1924 MS-62 double eagle that I bought about ten years ago. As I recently posted, I just upgraded the St Gaudens Double Eagle in my 7070 type set. Since I bought the old coin when the spot price of gold was much lower, I was looking to make a handsome profit even if the coin would only fetch slightly more than today’s spot price.

As we talked about the fees I was facing to list this coin on E-Bay, we came to the conclusion that we might be able to sell it at the show, avoid the E-Bay fees, and net slightly more money. In fact, my friend already had a dealer in mind and asked me if I would take a check in payment for the coin. Since I had no plans to spend a lot of money at the show this year, I told him a check would be fine.

While my friend was attempting to market the double eagle I went about to look for any Laura Gardin Fraser medals I might find on a predetermined $200 show budget. Window shopping around the bourse, I walked up to a dealer selling National Currency notes. When the dealer asked me about my collecting interests I told him that I didn’t normally collect notes. However, I explained to him that I was interested in buying a note from the city where my children were born and perhaps a note from Green Bay, Wisconsin. Sifting through his inventory, I found a $10 note from Green Bay and a $5 note from Baltimore, Maryland where my children were born.

The Green Bay note was outside my show budget and I was going to pass on it when my friend walked up to me and placed the cash proceeds from the double eagle in my hands. Let me just say that a collector with an unexpected bundle of cold hard cash on a bourse floor is a dangerous thing! Thus, since I am a Packer fan and I own a share of Packer stock, I bought both notes and blew my show budget sky high! Now what was I to do? Call it a show and bring the money home, or buy something else? Well, I must say that buying something else was far more appealing to me then to just simply bring the money home!

When I thought that I might be able to upgrade an MS-62 quarter eagle in my type set, I went about the bourse floor looking for a nice MS-63 or 64 example. After a bit of searching, I found a dealer with eight coins that met this criteria. Of four MS-63 and four MS-64 coins one coin stood out to me and it was a sale.

Later, my wife and I went out to eat and shopped at a local Ikea store where we bought two lamp stands for our living room. The next morning I went to the meeting of the Fellowship of Christian Numismatists. Finally, my wife and I spent about two hours looking over all the collector exhibits. Perusing the exhibits is one of our favorite things to do at a show with the added benefit of not spending any money to do so!

When we got home I went to my bank and deposited the $200 I took down to the show and… $250 more from the proceeds of the double eagle sale. All in all, I bought a couple of notes, a quarter eagle, and two lamp stands returning with $250 more than I took with me! That has never happened before and may never happen again! Incidentally, I didn’t find any new medals for my Laura Gardin Fraser set, but returned with items I had no intention of buying before going to the show.