Jim Haxby here...new to this site, but not so new to Canadian numismatics. It's hard for me to imagine, but I've been collecting for 60 years! When I started there were no grading services, no slabbing, and no numerical grading of most coins. To have breathtaking price increases for small differences in mint state coins would have been unthinkable. My interests have always tended toward early die varieties and I was friends with both Hans Zoell and Jack Griffin. My research and collecting interests (since about 1969) include the Victorian large cents, which I've collected by die (and for some dates, like the 1859 N9s, by die state). During my stint as Deputy Curator of the National Currency Collection, I had access to the engravers at the Canadian and Royal Mints and greatly benefited thereby. All the best to you other die variety enthusiasts --- it's great fun !!!