Copyright © 2011-2018 John N. Lupia III

Adler, Jonas, Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. Coin dealer, swindler. He issued a Fixed Price Catalogue in 1879. On February 21st, 1879, he was proposed as a member of the Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society.  Adler was a part-time coin dealer who would later catalog an auction sale of 225 lots of United States and Foreign Coins and Medals, at the D.F. Henry auction house at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on April 30, 1879.

    Though he was a proposed member of the Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society it ended as a status quo"The President appointed Mr. J. E. H. Kelley as teller - a vote then being taken and Mr. Kelley announced that more than three (3) votes had been cast in the negative." Members Morgan, McKnight, Kelley, Gies, Sermin, Shipman, Kirk, Comingo, and Rode were present. Article VII of the Society Bylaws states that three negative votes shall prevent the election of a prospective member." Apparently he had already developed a reputation for himself. His coin sale of April 1879 would be his first and last auction. 

Ed Frossard wrote in the July 1879 issue of Numisma:

    "Dealers sending coins on approval to Mr. Jonas Adler, Pittsburgh, PA., will do well, if they wish to assure a safe delivery, to address the distinguished coin dealer in care of one of the Town Justices, or of the Sheriff of the County."

The September 1879 issue of Mason's Coin Collectors' Herald included an open letter to Adler:

    "You seem to be doing a wholesale coin business on credit; but in reply to your many solicitations we say patronize those who give 30 days and send us cash at half price you pay on credit. Perhaps the credit system pays you best."

The November 1884 issue of Numisma states:

      "Jonas Adler, Pittsburgh, PA., has been rusticating at Claremont Springs, at municipal expenses for swindling a Fifth Ave., cigar dealer in a transaction of old coins. A.A.A. No. 1,     first-class preferred petty swindler. Coin collectors, beware of Jonas!"

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Bibliography :

Mason's Coin Collectors' Herald,Vol. I, No. 2, September (1879) : 16b-c;

Wayne K. Homren, “The Early History of the Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society,” -OR- Write to:

Gengerke, Martin, American Numismatic Auctions, 8th edition (1990) : 2;

Edouard Frossard, “Coin Sales,”  Numisma, Vol. 8, No. 6, November (1884) : 6