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The E-Sylum (11/28/2010)

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Numismatic publisher Al Hoch passed away on Thursday the 25th. Our thoughts are with his family. Hoch ran Quarterman Publications and published and reprinted an impressive number of important numismatic works. Thanks to Dave Bowers, Joe Levine and Dave Schenkman for passing the word. -Editor

Crosby Early Coins of America Erbstein

John W. Adams writes:

It sounds like Al's time had come but, nonetheless, his passing is a huge loss to the hobby. His immense intellect embraced all facets of the hobby, while including profound knowledge of many specialties. For those not familiar with Al's Quarterman Publications, the titles he selected for re-printing brought the great classics into our libraries at an affordable price. The quality and care with which he executed each project did full justice to the rare original.

Whether we choose to admit it, collecting is a low grade form of greed. Al was the exception - he had no greed, just reverence for the past, abundant curiosity and a willingness to share his knowledge with others.

Al's son Alan Hoch provided this obituary:

Alfred D. Hoch, 75, of Lexington, passed away peacefully Thursday, November 25th after a long illness. Born January 31st 1935 in Philadelphia, son of Alfred and Frieda (Heurfeld) Hoch. Proud graduate of MIT class of 1957 with a BS in Mechanical Engineering.

Al had national top secret security clearance at the Draper Laboratory in Cambridge where he worked on inertial navigation systems. Among other projects, Al worked on the Apollo project and aided in the design of the navigation system for the Polaris ballistic missile.

He founded Quarterman Publications, a boutique publishing company which has provided generations of advanced collectors and curators with access to high quality reprints of scarce definitive reference works in various collecting fields such as colonial coins, medals, stamps, civil war tokens, American political badges and ribbons, and early coins from various countries.

Al was himself a dedicated and lifelong collector of coins, tokens, and ephemera, and became an acknowledged authority on vintage posters and antique paper Americana in his later years. Formerly of Lincoln, MA, Al recently received a lifetime achievement award from the American Numismatic Society for his scholarly contributions in the field of numismatics.

Al will be remembered as a gentle man with a quirky sense of humor and a love of chocolate, but mostly for the selfless devotion to his children, which he considered his proudest achievement in life. Al is survived by three sons, Alan Hoch of Groton, David Hoch of Belmont, Jon Hoch and his wife Carey of Lincoln, and his daughter Carole Lee and her husband John de Jong of Weston. He also leaves seven grandchildren: Nick, Lily, and Emily Hoch of Groton, Jack and Sam de Jong of Weston, and Daniel and Matthew Hoch of Lincoln. Memorial service will be private.

Dave Schenkman adds:

We were friends for many years, my wife and I still remember the time he stayed at our house, about thirty years ago. I compiled the price guides for three of his books.

Please share your thoughts with us if you have any personal memories of Al to share. Does anyone have a list of all Quarterman Publications? These include Crosby's Early Coins of America and Maris' Coins of New Jersey. -Editor
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