Archivist’s News (Winter 2004)

by Joseph Ciccone

Since the last issue of the ANS magazine, we have continued our efforts to add to the historical content of the Society’s web site. Our latest addition is a history of the Society’s publishing program. This new site — which you can find at http://www.numismatics.org/Archives/PublicationHistory — includes brief descriptions of each of the fourteen monograph series or periodicals published by the ANS since its founding in 1858.

Publishing history

Readers of Howard Adelson’s history of the ANS, American Numismatic Society, 1858-1958, will recall that the Society’s first attempt at publishing was the American Journal of Numismatics, first series. Originally proposed by ANS Treasurer, Joseph N.T. Levick, this periodical ran from 1866 through 1924.


Joseph N.T. Levick

By the 1920s, the Society had received sufficient funding to establish its first monograph series: Numismatic Notes and Monographs. This series consisted of separately issued numismatic studies — each on a specific topic. The first title in this series was Sydney Noe’s Coin Hoards. Originally, Numismatic Notes and Monographs was published in an unusually small format of 4.5 by 6.5 inches. (The format was determined by Archer Huntington, who had donated the funds to publish the series.) Because certain studies required a larger format, in 1938 the ANS began publishing a second series, Numismatic Studies. Both series are still in publication today.

The 1950s and ’60s witnessed the birth of a number of additional monograph series, including the Hispanic Numismatic Series, Ancient Coins in North American Collections and the Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum. The Proceedings of the Coinage of the Americas Conference series would be added in the 1980s.

During this time, the Society also began publishing two periodicals. In the late 1940s, the ANS introduced Museum Notes, which included articles detailing research conducted on topics related to the Society’s holdings, as well as original scholarship in the field of numismatics. (Museum Notes would be succeeded in the late 1990s by the American Journal of Numismatics, second series.) At the same time, the ANS also began publishing Numismatic Literature, a periodical that included abstracts of recent articles and books relating to numismatics. This latter periodical remains in publication.

Website Structure

The new website has been designed to provide information about each of the monograph series and periodicals that the ANS has published. Visitors to the site initially can read brief descriptions about each series or periodical and view an image of the first issue of that publication. For periodicals, the frequency of publication is also included.

For those who want additional information about the monograph series, we have provided hyperlinks to bibliographic entries for each monograph issued in each series. This enables visitors to review the chronological publishing of all titles in the series.

We are planning further developments for the site, such as a listing of monographs that have not been published as part of an ongoing series.