I am the John A. Wexler that has authored or coauthored numerous books on doubled dies and RPMs. I am currently a retired high school mathematics teacher. When I was still teaching, I taught mostly Precalculus, Calculus, and Advanced Placement Calculus. I was also the Department Chairperson in the high school in which I taught. I must confess that I do miss working with the students and my colleagues, but it is nice to have more time to spend with the coin hobby.
I first started collecting coins at age 7, which means that this year is my 51st year of collecting coins. I'll let you do the math! I found my first doubled die error in 1971 which was attributed by error/variety specialist Alan Herbert. Mr. Herbert invited me to join a club known as CONE (Collector’s of Numismatic Errors).
Intrigued by my first doubled die discovery I started researching the variety type. The very next year in 1972 the various 1972 doubled dies were produced by the U.S. Mint and I was hooked. During the 1970's and early 1980's I served as "Hubbing Variety Statistician" for CONE, and I also began writing for CONEs club publication Errorgram.
By 1978 I had enough information on doubled die varieties to publish my first book The Encyclopedia of Doubled Dies, Volume 1. I followed that with Volume 2 in 1981. Also in 1978 Robert Wilharm and I started Error-Variety News, a monthly magazine devoted to errors and die varieties. In 1983 I coauthored the original The RPM Book with Tom Miller and in 1984 I authored The Lincoln Cent Doubled Die. Both of these latter references became standards in the hobby and are still used by many today.
Also during this period of time I eventually became a member of the Board of Directors of CONE, and my tenure there culminated with becoming the Chairman of the Board. It was while I was the Chairman of the Board that CONE and “rival” error club NECA (Numismatic Error Collectors of America) joined forces as CONECA (Combined Numismatic Error Collectors of America) in 1983 under the guidance of Lonesome John Devine.
In the early 1980’s Error-Variety News was sold to Lonesome John Devine. By the mid-1980’s family commitments and increased job responsibilities put too much of a strain on hobby time and in 1986 I left the hobby. I sold the rights to my original doubled die and RPM files and also to the books that had been published to that point so that the research on those varieties could continue. CONECA ultimately ended up with the rights to these.
In 1988, even though no longer active in the hobby, I was honored by CONECA by being inducted into the CONECA Hall of Fame "for lifelong contributions to the error hobby." I was also awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the club.
By 1993 family and occupational pressures started to subside and the collecting bug started to bite once again. I slowly found myself getting back into the hobby and it wasn’t long before I was again collecting coins. In 1995 the Mint produced the various doubled die Lincoln cents for that year and I was again hooked. CONECA was not interested in selling the rights to my original files back to me, so I started listing doubled die varieties and RPM varieties in a new file that started from scratch. I wrote a booklet entitled The 1995 Lincoln Cent Doubled Die Varieties which was published through Error Trends Coin Magazine and was soon writing for publications such as Coins Magazine and Numismatic News.
In 1996 I coauthored The Authoritative Reference on Lincoln Cents with Kevin Flynn and this book won the Numismatic Literary Award that year for “Best U.S. Coin Book.” Other books that followed include The Best of the Jefferson Nickel Doubled Die Varieties, The Best of the Washington Quarter Doubled Die Varieties, The Authoritative Reference on Eisenhower Dollars (First Edition), The Complete Price Guide and Cross Reference to Lincoln Cent Mint Mark Varieties, The Comprehensive Guide to Lincoln Cent Repunched Mint Mark Varieties, Over Mint Marks and Hot Repunched Mint Marks, The Authoritative Reference on Buffalo Nickels, Treasure Hunting Buffalo Nickels, Treasure Hunting Mercury Dimes, and Treasure Hunting Franklin and Kennedy Half Dollars. I probably missed a few in here. More book projects are in the works.
Currently I have a monthly column in Coin World, a national weekly coin newspaper. The column is titled "Varieties Notebook". The column actually appears twice a month and I alternate the column with fellow Coin World columnist Ken Potter.
I am also serving as Vice President of The National Collectors Association of Die Doubling (NCADD), a die variety club based on the Wexler Die Variety Files.
I recently put together an educational website Wexler's Die Varieties which can be accessed at www.doubleddie.com and we hope that you will stop by and take a peek.