In this, my first appeal to you as Executive Director of the ANS, I first want to thank you most warmly for your continuing generosity over the years. Without you, this institution could not even exist let alone thrive—and it is most certainly thriving. For this we must all be grateful for the untiring efforts of Dr. Ute Wartenberg over the past two decades, and I am honored to follow in her footsteps.
Among much else, your support in 2019 enabled us to further our efforts on research, digitization, publications, exhibitions, and education. Some highlights include: an exhibit of medals from the ANS collection at George Washington’s Mount Vernon; the cataloging and digitization of our late colleague and benefactor Rick Witschonke’s unique collection of almost 4,000 rare coins from the Roman Imperial period; the purchase of the Del Bland archives; lectures at the ANS by respected numismatists Dr. John Kleeberg and Dr. Michel Amandry; joint conferences with Columbia University and Binghamton University; and the visits to our headquarters by school groups eager to learn about numismatics and history.
In addition, Ute and myself, along with other ANS staff and Trustees, traveled around the US to coin shows and conventions, representing the Society and greeting members from many different parts of the country. Meeting so many of you in these travels was one of the personal highlights of my year, and I look forward to seeing even more of you this year.
There are many other noteworthy achievements of the past year, and you can read about them in our 2019 Annual Report. All of them were realized by a remarkably small and dedicated staff—and your absolutely essential financial help.
Today, as we embark on our annual year-end campaign, our goal is to finish out the calendar year with a robust financial bill of health, which will allow us to move forward with the many ambitious projects we have slated for 2020. These include:
- The publication of Royal Coinage in Hellenistic Bactria, by Simon Glenn; The Tiflis Dirhams of Mongke Khan, by Kirk Bennett; and Old Regime France and its Jetons, by Jim McClellan.
- The rehousing and scanning of letters and records from the numismatic firm S. H. & H. Chapman.
- Enhancing the data and photos available in MANTIS, our online search catalog.
- Launching a new online resource based on Richard Schaffer’s die studies of Roman Republican coinage;
- Completing the cataloging of the archives of the Medallic Art Company, with Dr. Jesse Kraft, our new Assistant Curator of the Coins and Currency of the Americas; and finding a permanent storage and exhibition space for these treasures.
As you may know, despite its eminence in the field, the Society is actually a relatively modest organization, made up of people who, like you, are devoted to the notion that the study of numismatics has vital importance for our knowledge of society, history, art, and culture. At this time of year, we go to you, our members, and we ask that you once again make a gift to the ANS to ensure that our mission remains pertinent and our goals achievable.
I thank all of you who have given generously over the past year. But I urge you to please make an additional gift now, by December 31, and help us start the new year off right. Your tax-deductible donation to the ANS will help secure our footing for the coming twelve months and beyond—and will allow us all to accomplish much more to be proud of.
With sincerest gratitude,
Dr. Gilles Bransbourg