Joel R. Anderson
Building a World-Class Collection
Joel was born and raised in Florence, Alabama, where he attended the University of North Alabama. He has spent most of his life involved in the family-owned business established by his late father, Clyde W. Anderson, a firm that evolved from the street corner newsstand set up in 1917 when Clyde was forced to leave school at age 14 to support his family.
Joel is active in a variety of civic and philanthropic activities. He has served his community as director and chairman of the board of Riverhill School and as a board member of the Riverhill School Foundation. He has acted as director of Shoals Chamber of Commerce; director of First National Bank; chairman and founder of the Florence-Lauderdale Library Foundation; chairman of the Shoals Literacy Council; director of the YMCA, and the Florence-Lauderdale Industrial Expansion Committee. Joel has also served as founder, chairman, and director of the American Fireworks Standards Laboratory and as a trustee of the Cardiovascular Institute of Philadelphia. Mr. Anderson has served on numerous comittees and boards and is the chairman and director of Anderson Companies. Anderson Companies include Anderson Media Corporation, TNT Fireworks, Anderson Press, Whitman Publishing Company, and Books-A-Million.
Mr. Anderson has formed the most extensive, most rarity-laden collection of paper money by design types ever formed or offered at auction. It is the result of many years of careful study, connoisseurship, and patience by Joel R. Anderson. As have the majority of those who have formed great collections of various numismatic specialties, Joel’s interest began as a teenager.
By 1963, working with his older brother Charles, he was quite versed in the basics of numismatics. In that year in Washington D.C., long sealed vaults of the Treasury Building were opened. Revealed were thousands of bags full of Morgan and Peace Dollars. The Anderson family was on hand and purchased a large quantity of bags at face value. Then began the process of searching through bags for rare dates and mintmarks. Anderson Companies began to add coin supplies to their inventory. In 2003, Whitman Publishing Company was added to the roster of companies owned by Anderson Companies, and the rest is history.
In forming his collection Joel had as an objective obtaining the finest-condition example of every major large-size federal paper money design from the first widely circulated issues of 1861, continuing down to the 1920s. In addition, within a given type, major adjustments of certain features such as Treasury Seals were collected.
By careful study and reaching to acquire rarities when they became available, he set many price records at auction, including the first million-dollar note. Over a long period of years, yesterday’s records have become today’s bargins in numismatics.
In total, the 4 Parts of the Joel R. Anderson Collection sold for $34,126,980 between March 2018 and February 2019. Sadly, Joel R. Anderson passed away on October 12, 2020.
Joel R. Anderson