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The Ancient Coin Collectors Guild has become a driving force in the ongoing effort to protect coin collectors and museums in which coins are stored from being forced to give up these items to foreign governments under the premise the coins are the cultural patrimony of the claimant nation. — Richard Giedroyc, World Coin News April 26, 2010



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2005 Harlan J. Berk Essay Winners Announced

Under the auspices of Ancient Coins for Education (ACE) three deserving young numismatists have been selected as winners in the 2005 Harlan J. Berk Essay Contest.

May 15, 2005

Two hundred sixty students from elementary, middle, and high schools across the nation participated in the 2005 Harlan J. Berk Essay Contest sponsored in collaboration with Ancient Coins for Education, Inc. (ACE), a non-profit, all-volunteer organization that supplies genuine ancient coins to classrooms for students to identify and study. With the prospect of winning prizes totalling $3500 in savings bonds provided courtesy of Mr. Berk, students chose an image of a single, actual ancient coin, then recreated the context and cast of characters, historical or imaginary, that might have been connected with their chosen coin or encountered it along the way. Judges placed particular emphasis on historical accuracy and numismatic facts as well as the students’ ability to conjure up images of palaces and humble households, emperors and slaves, great battles and quiet, contemplative moments from their fertile imaginations.

From their submissions, sixty-two essays went on to the semi-finals, and ultimately three winners were selected. Mr. Berk will personally award the $2,000 savings bond prize for best senior essay to Joseph Daniel Torchia, of Wellington School in Columbus, Ohio.

Mr. Berk’s son Sammy, will deliver a $1,000 bond to Brandon Reich-Sweet, intermediate student from Rick’s Center for Gifted Children in Denver, Colorado, and ACE Director Scott Uhrick, will present the $500 bond to middle school student Vittoriano Di Vaio at Seven Bridges Middle School in Chappaqua, N.Y. Students whose essays came in second and third places will also receive fully attributed ancient coins from ACE. A complete posting of the essays may be seen at

young numismatist
scott uhrick
harlan j. berk

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