Description[Nineteenth-Century Coin and Stamp Collecting]. William Willoughby Cole, Third Earl of Enniskillen, Archive of Seven Letters Relating to Coin Collecting, all dated between March 4, 1878, and August 13, 1878, and discussing coins and stamps. Each letter is written in ink from Cole to David M. Evans of the Superintendent's office at the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia. All letters are clean, with only nominal soiling. Included with each letter is the original transmittal envelope, though the postage stamps have been removed.
In two letters (March 4 and June 10), Cole informs Evans that coins that he has ordered have arrived safely. In the another letter (two pages) dated March 21, the Earl of Enniskillen notifies Evans that "the parcel of Coins must have gone astray. . . . I have not yet had any tidings of its arrival." The following day (March 22), the earl writes that he is "very happy to say that the Box of Coins has arrived" (one-page letter). In the fourth letter (four pages) dated March 28, Cole thanks Evans "particularly for the two Medals and the Book you so kindly sent me as a present." He also requests the "value (in English money) of the entire set of (Six) Gold Coins . . . as I might require some of them for the British Museum." Cole continues, "as regards the Postage Stamps, I am very rich in Americans. I think I have all the ordinary Sets . . . except the two Stamps issued in 1847." He then lists other stamps that he has, as well as those he desires, such as "the newspaper and periodical stamps of 1865." Next, he describes "a very curious medal I possess. Which I think will amuse you the date is 1545. The reverse representing the Devil sitting on the Pope's shoulders pulling off the triple Crown." Included with this letter is a list of stamps owned by Cole. His June 20 letter reports information to Evans about a particular medal, while the final letter (August 13) transmits a money order (not included) and places an order for more coins.
William Cole (1807-1886), who lived at Florence Court, Northern Ireland, served as a member of Parliament and as the first Imperial Grand Master of the Loyal Orange Institution (the Orange Order), a Northern Ireland Protestant fraternal organization. Evans was likely a member of the organization since Cole refers to him as "Brother" and closes with "fraternally yours." In addition to collecting coins and stamps, Cole was also a collector of fossils.
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