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Chelsea Blair, Age 10, California: Honorable Mention

The Wonder Of Coins

Chelsea Blair

Before I started collecting coins, I never really saw the perspective of coins the way I do now. And actually it's quite complicated. Though after looking at different coins, and looking at the dates, the rarity, the price and much more, you start to memorize all the different ways to look at coins. But coins weren't made just for people to collect them. They made them so people can spend them. For example, an American penny is worth one cent. If most people were to look at a 1909-S V.D.B penny, they would think it was just a simple penny, but actually they only made 484 thousand of the 1909-S V.D.B.'s, which makes it very rare. They can have a price up to $1,200! You might think that is a lot just to spend on a little penny, but usually there are millions, sometimes billions, of the same coin. If the price is really expensive, there would probably be very few coins left. Or it could have been a brand new coin and would be in a proof box.

The other day, when my dad and I were looking in the quarter rolls for the 8 quarters we needed (four of the national parks, and four of the states). Although we haven't had much luck lately, a very shiny coin caught my eye. I looked at the date below George Washington's head, and very clearly it read: 1973. On the right side of George Washington's head there was the letter "S". "S" stands for San Francisco, which is where the quarter was minted. Sometimes they have "D" for Denver and "P" for Philadelphia. But very rarely do you see the "S" mint mark. So my dad and I looked in a quarter book that my dad bought a few years ago, and to my surprise, a 1973-S only came out in proof sets. They don't use them as spent money. That explained why it was really shiny. So it was very interesting how it got into that specific quarter roll. Even though we don't know how it ended up in a quarter roll, it makes you wonder, and wondering is great for the imagination.

Some people think that coin collecting isn't what it really is. They might think that coin collecting is just finding coins and putting them in a book. But it really is much more than that. Coin collecting has caught me in my imagination, and it's one thing that I don't want to let go in my mind. It's one thing that makes me relax and always puts a smile on my face. When I find a coin I need, I jump and put on a happy grin. When I look through a bunch of quarter rolls and don't find one, I laugh and still put on a joyful smile. Coin collecting is just a hobby for me, but a very wonderful and emotional hobby.

Bob's comments: Chelsea reminds us of so many important hobby aspects: Family time, mentoring, her voyage of discovery and wonder. Do you know why the 1973-S is the most encountered circulating proof? And Chelsea can easily be forgiven her comment about the value of an S-V.D.B., but I recommend you take a look at the following:*3076 which realized $97,750!

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