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Walter Breen 1930-1993
Numismatic author whose most important work is Walter Breen’s Complete encyclopedia of U.S. and colonial coins (1988), a very large, heavy, and expensive book that documents all major varieties of US coinage. While books had existed before dealing with particular series, no single book before or since has ever attempted to cover the amount a material that this book covered. His reputation in numismatic circles was hurt when he was arrested on a child molestation charge in October 1991 at the Superior Stamp & Coin Galleries in Beverly Hills. Coins are often described by their Breen number, the unique number assigned to each variety listed in his book.

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