REQUIESCAT IN NUMISMATA
Laurence Brown 1931-2012
It came to my notice that Laurence Brown died on 18th June. I can’t claim to have known him but I met him socially once in 2008, sitting next to him at a very jolly lunch hosted by Peter Mitchell. He was the author of the three volumes of “British Historical Medals 1760-1960” (referred to as ‘BHM’) and spent most of his working life at B.A. Seaby Ltd from 1947. As we were leaving the restaurant I took the photograph here; Laurence is on the left - can anyone name the others in the photo? No prizes! Full obituaries will appear in the relevant numismatic press in due course no doubt, but certainly all dealers, auctioneers and collectors of commemorative medals owe him a great debt of gratitude for bringing the subject to the fore.
Michael Sharp 1940-2012
Michael lost his battle with cancer on 9th August. I first met him properly when I started working at Glendining in 1990, usually showing him auction lots during a sale as he sat in the allotted Baldwin’s seat to the right of the auctioneer. His numismatic knowledge was great, and his principal interests were the coins of Charles I as well as Jacobite material. He was also a huge supporter of Arsenal football club, and a connoisseur of real ale. He had a keen sense of humour, and could often be heard remarking that an auction price was high enough ‘to scare the cat’. In May 2005 I took the photograph here, which captures him quite nicely I think.
Frank Milward 1943-2014
Frank died on Wednesday 1st October after a long battle with cancer. I was shocked to hear of his passing not least that I didn’t know that he had been so ill for so long (he stalled out at the London Coin Fair until very recently). Also he was such a ‘good egg’. Another dealer once said to me (and I paraphrase) : ‘why is it that all the decent guys in our business die too soon, and the ones who ought to die early, don’t’. Memories of Patrick Finn spring to mind. Frank used to have a coin shop in Reading and then operated from his home just outside the town.
Jim King (James D. King) died 2018
Jim died towards the end of 2018, probably in his early 80s. Originally from Pennsylvania he was a longtime resident in Massachusetts and coin dealer for at least 60 years. He was one of the first American dealers whom I met when I started out at Glendining’s (where he was generally known as JDK) and must have been in his 60s compared to my mid-20s. He was a real gentleman and gave me some advice towards the end of his time for which I will always be grateful. Here is a photo taken at the Chicago coin fair in 2015.
Emyr George 1959-2020
It’s with great sadness that I record the passing of my friend Emyr George, a farmer of Pembrokeshire. I first met him in 1992 as he used to buy from Glendining’s where I worked, although his first loyalty was to Spink when Patrick Finn was in charge. From then on I would see him annually when I holidayed nearby in Pembrokeshire. His numismatic interests were the halfcrowns of Charles I and Welsh pub checks – and he was knowledgeable in both. Welsh was his first language and he would often help me when I couldn’t satisfactorily translate a Welsh medal. He had a gentle sense of humour, was extremely kind and always tried to look on the bright side of life, never complaining even when in later years he experienced considerable adversity. His photograph sometimes appeared in numismatic publications by way of acknowledgement, including with one of his cattle in Withers’s British Copper Tokens 1811-1820. Here is a photo I took in 2009. Hwyl fawr hen ffrind.
Others remembered in passing but without commentary: Iain Murray, (the lovely) Patrick Finn, Dmitri Loulakakis, John Whitmore, Hiram Brown, Bill Murray, Irene ‘Neddy’ Allen, Paul Dawson