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BY JOHN FEIGENBAUM, PUBLISHER
The entire CDN family wishes to express their sincere Condolences to the Family of Leon Hendrickson. Leon, as we all knew him, was a giant in the world of numismatics, yet casual in his dealings. I never once heard him referred to as “Mr. Hendrickson.” As the founder of SilverTowne, a large Indiana-based mail order and bricks-and-mortar coin shop, Leon was a professional numismatist for more than half a century. Over that time he successfully navigated his large company during seismic shifts in the coin industry, with a patented charm and class that was beloved by nearly all of those who knew him.
I personally had many dealings with Leon as a professional coin dealer. One especially impactful deal that I specifically remember was at a Central States show back in the 1990s where I had just purchased an incredible group of (12) Proof 1895 Morgan dollars graded 63-65 for nearly half a million dollars. It was the most money I’d ever spent on a single purchase at that time and I was more than a little nervous about my new ‘position’ in these coins. I already knew Leon for some years as a someone my father respected greatly but I thought he was a specialist in less expensive coins so I didn’t think of him first. I spoke to a few dealers at first about my fresh deal but they were scared off by the quantity of coins coming for sale at once. Needless to say I became more nervous. My shoulders slumped, I paced up the aisle wondering about my next move when I saw Leon who was—in a rare moment— available and he waived hello to me. I said, with my biggest smile, “Leon, have I got a deal for you!” (His love of Morgan dollars was no secret.) Even though the show was lifeless he perked up and inquired what I could possibly have. I think he would have enjoyed looking at VG 1881-S Morgans as much as the 1895’s. He just loved them. Anyway, I showed Leon my loot, and he instantly became as excited about the deal as I had originally been. Leon happily bought 7 of the coins from me with a check I could deposit the following day, which energized me in ways I cannot describe (as I still had 30 days to pay!). He gave me the courage to do more deals like that in the future and not fear a few negative responses from the naysayers. This was a huge lesson for me as a young coin dealer that I will never forget. Leon, may you rest in peace my friend.
MORGAN DOLLARS CONTINUE TO SLIDE
The biggest market news of the week is the continued slide of non-CAC Morgan dollars in higher grades. Supply continues to exceed demand, especially for common-date CC’s and high grade better dates. Keep an eye on this series as we are not likely yet at the bottom.
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The Publisher and managing partner at CDN Publishing, John Feigenbaum, has been a professional numismatist since 1979. Formerly president of David Lawrence Rare Coins, John has taken on Publishing and executive responsibilities for CDN Publishing. John has written for numerous trade publications and published "The Complete Guide to Washington Quarters" in 1991. In 2014, John received the PNG Abe Kosoff Founders Award for "his steadfast dedication to the entire numismatic community".more from John Feigenbaum