ELLIS, FRANK ELMER

ELLIS, FRANK ELMER

Copyright © 2011-2017 John N. Lupia III

Frank Elmer Ellis (1861-1937), (1911-1937) 30 Elm Place, Webster Groves, Missouri; (1904-1907) 115 North 11th Street, St. Louis, Missouri. He joined the ANA

 in 1895? and is member no. 133. He was also a member of the ANS. He collected paper money. In 1897 he opened St. Louis Stamp & Coin at 1240 Franklin Avenue, 

St. Louis, Missouri, which he sold ten years later in July 1907 to Burdette G. Johnson and David A. Sutherland (Sullivan). In 1898, he moved his shop to 312 North 

4th Street. In 1901 he moved to 1003 Pine Street. In 1903 he joined the British Numismatic Society. Later on he specialized in coins, firearms and Indian relics. 

In 1904, he moved his shop to 115 North 11th Street, and hired Burdette Johnson to work in his store.


Fig. 1 Photo of a very early St. Louis Stamp and Coin Company business envelope. Courtesy of the Lupia Numismatic Library Special 
Collection - The Chapman Family Archive.


                He was born in Pennsylvania on September 5, 1861, the son of John Ellis of New York and Henriette Corley of Virginia. He became a stamp dealer while 

living at 817 Sixth Avenue,  Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and advertised in The Philatelic West, February (1897) : 10. He was amongst the first coin dealers who advertised 

in the February issue of The Philatelic West.

Fig. 2. Perhaps the earliest of Ellis' advertisements selling stamps at age 35. Philatelic West, Vol. 3, No. 2, February (1897) : 10. Courtesy 
Lupia Numismatic Library, Special Collection, The Philatelic West.

                Late 1897 he moved to Franklin Avenue, St. Louis, Missouri, and began trading as St. Louis Stamp & Coin Company. By March 1898 he moved to North 

4th Street.


                In 1902, he married Anna “Lena” Magdelina Seim (1878-), a first generation American of German parents, and they had a daughter named Ruth (1903-). 

In 1911 he moved to 30 Elm Place, Webster Groves, Missouri, where he worked in his business as an antique dealer. 

"THE BUFFALO DESIGN ON THE $10 NOTE OF 1901." published in the September 1941 issue of The Numismatist, page 687, was adapted from an article by 

F. Ellis, entitled: "Buffalo Design on the 30-Cent United States Stamp," which appeared in the July 26, 1941, issue of "Stamps, " through the courtesy and 

permission of H. L. Lindquist, publisher. Apparently published posthumously.

On February 4, 1937, the 75-year old Frank E. Ellis was found shot to death in the bathtub with a self-inflicted gunshot wound

 to his chest from a 32 caliber revolver found laying at his side. Police estimated he had been dead ten days, but the Coroner’s report

 of John O’Connell estimated his death about February 1st.

Fig. 3. The first St. Louis Stamp & Coin Company advertisement ever published in Philatelic West, Vol. 5, No. 3, March 1898 inside front
 cover. Courtesy Lupia Numismatic Library, Special Collection, The Philatelic West.

Fig. 4. The second St. Louis Stamp & Coin Company advertisement ever published in Philatelic West, Vol. 7, No. 1, June 1898 inside front
 cover. Note he is now soliciting for coins and stamps. Courtesy Lupia Numismatic Library, Special Collection, The Philatelic West.
Fig. 5. Second address of St. Louis Stamp & Coin in 1898 removed from Franklin Avenue. Courtesy of the Lupia Numismatic Library Special
 Collection - St. Louis Stamp & Coin File. Note the addressee is a very famous Confederate Paper Money Dealer, Luther Brown Tuthill (q.v). 
The postage stamps are U. S. Bureau Issues printed 1894-1898, Scott Nos. 271, and 272.
Fig. 6. St. Louis Stamp and Coin Co., advertisement in Philatelic West and Camera News, Vol. 8, No. 2, December 1898 3d leaf from back.
  Courtesy Lupia Numismatic Library, Special Collection, The Philatelic West.

Fig. 7. Courtesy of the Lupia Numismatic Library Special Collection - St. Louis Stamp & Coin File. 
Fig. 8. World's Fair St. Louis, postmarked December 31, 1903. Lupia Numismatic Library Special Collection - St. Louis Stamp & Coin File. 

Fig. 9. Third address of St. Louis Stamp & Coin beginning in 1901. For the new envelope design see the HOME PAGE. Courtesy of the Lupia 
Numismatic Library Special Collection - St. Louis Stamp & Coin File. 

Fig. 9. Fourth address of St. Louis Stamp & Coin beginning in April 1904. Courtesy of the Lupia Numismatic Library Special Collection - 
St. Louis Stamp & Coin File. Note the postage stamp Scott No. 301 is the lower right corner specimen from a booklet pane of six stamps.

Ellis began to advertise with a full page in The Philatelic West inside front cover  beginning in January 1902. The advertising campaign in The Philatelic 

West increased under Burdette G. Johnson after 1904.


Work :

Special Stock Reduction Circular, No. 9. ODD COINS FROM QUEER COUNTRIES and OTHER ITEMS

Auctions :

Late November 1904

St. Louis Stamp & Coin Co. [George W. Rice] the large and valuable collection of United States copper and silver coins, also many rare foreign coins, the

 property of Mr. Geo. W. Rice, Detroit, Mich. St. Louis: F. E. Ellis, Prop., B. G. Johnson, Manager, Dan Long, Auctioneer, April 13-14, 1906. 107, (1) pages,

 2316 lots, 4 halftone plates of coins.

Bibliography :

The Philatelic West, September (1924) :

British Numismatic Journal (1903) :461

Philatelic West, Vol. 75, No. 2, January-February (1919) : 72 ad

ANA Membership List and Directory (1927) : 52

Hobbies, Volume 42, No. 1  (1937) : 120

Sylloge (Smithsonian Institution Press, Jan 17, 1993) : xvi


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