“If you are like I am and I suppose you are, I imagine you are wondering just who Chester L. Krause is. Well to start with I am just plain Chet. I’m not 30 yet and still a bachelor. I know it’s leap year; I am not advertising, just stating a fact. By trade I am a carpenter. Most of my work is in or around Iola. As far as my collecting, it is strictly U.S. Of late I have two pets – Commemoratives and SL Quarters Unc. Neither are complete but have a nice start. Any nice coin tempts me.
“My favorite Uncle gave me a free trip to Europe during World War II. Saw lots of country over there – that is out of the back of a G.I. Truck. Was gone away from here 3 years. It is since my return my collection really started. It was, however, a hangover from prewar days.
“Until two years ago I lived on a farm a short distance from town. Of course Iola isn’t very big, only about 800.
“That brings up the fact where is Iola? And what a name? Well without the aid of a map it is kind of hard to tell you just where it is. So if you will get out your atlas, find Wisconsin, put your finger on the center of the map, lift it up and you should be quite close to Stevens Point. Just east of there 25 miles is Iola.
“Iola is Norwegian, that is it used to be, however with the advance of time and the migrating of other nationalities such as myself, you’ll find most everything here now. It isn’t too uncommon to hear the Norske language being spoken on the streets and in the surrounding communities. I would say Iola is just an average American Community.”
Numismatic News began life as a focal point for those who desired to run classified ads. These were inexpensive and promoted exchanges and trades. Chet had his eye on the stars, so it seems, and into a decade or two later Krause Publications became a giant in publishing. Cliff Mishler, a young collector who as a teenager was prominent, joined Chet and helped manage the business. In time dozens of reference books were published, including the Krause-Mishler Standard Catalog of World Coins, an indispensable reference. The firm spread out beyond numismatics to include antique cars, hunting, recreation, you name it. Some years later the stockholders, including many employees, accepted a buyout offer from F+W Publications in Cincinnati, the owners today.
Chet retired from business some years back, as did Cliff Mishler. Both went on to other great things, including presidencies of the American Numismatic Association, donations to the ANA and others, and support for the hobby. Along the way both Chet and Cliff were inducted into the ANA Hall of Fame.
As I write these words I again congratulate Chet on his unique accomplishment in numismatic publishing, education, and outreach. Plus, he is the very definition of a nice guy. May he be a dynamic part of our hobby for years to come.