There was a time, in what now seems the distant past, when researching information about ancient coins and writing articles about the subjects portrayed on coins was a personal dream. Unfortunately, unless one bore the credentials necessary to be accepted by academic Journals. there were very few places to share the fruit of one's effort. Out of this void emerged The Celator. It was an idea whose time was right, and it was nurtured by a host of benefactors with diverse perspectives The inimicable Dr. Saslow characterized this phenomenon as a labor of love-it was, and still is-but far from the love or labors of anyone person.
In the minds of collectors and professionals in this field, we have become closely associated with The Celator because it has always been a publication where the editor, sales manager, typesetter and distribution clerk were one and the same person. If you called on the telephone, you generally knew who you were going to talk to. As the years passed and the circulation grew, it became impossible for one person to handle every phase of production and distribution. It was our very good fortune to have family members who could step III and take over some of these functions.
One would think that Increased circulation would ease the burdens of production- we've all heard about "economy of scale"- but it requires a substantial circulation for these economics to take effect. A small and very specialized publication is relegated to a constant struggle for economic balance. Sharing that experience with our readers, in a rather candid way, has helped to build the fraternal cooperation that is a hallmark of The Celator. As you read through this issue, you will note that it is printed using a different process than you are used to seeing. The whole world is becoming digital, and it is a matter of survival that we march to the same drum in this case. The emerging technology is amazing. We now produce pages of text and graphics entirely on the computer and output them directly to an ink-based digital printer (not to be confused with a copy machine) that delivers 260 pages per minute in a squeaky-clean office environment. We made the investment in this technology because there simply are no viable alternatives short of forced labor. As a matter of fact, we 've even resorted to a little of that in the past! The good news is an increase in flexibility and economy that offsets the rampant inflation of paper costs these days. The bad news is, this is a relatively new technology, and it is still in the development stages. Resolution is not quite as sharp as we would like, but as in all things- we continue to balance quality against cost. The technology will improve, and we will continue to strive for the highest quality attainable within our resources. Somehow, it seems fitting that this parting commentary announces a change in our production methods. The past eight and a half years have been a constant challenge in this respect.
As the release of issue number 100 (October 1995) draws near, we look back at a wonderful period in our numismatic career. To watch a spontaneous idea become a dream and then evolve into a reality has been a very great reward for the effort expended. The associations made will last a lifetime and the experiences were unsurpassable, but this is not the end of a career-only a new fork in the stream. We are not leaving the comfort of old friends, merely changing addresses. In fact, in many ways we will become more visible as our efforts are redirected from production back to the basics of research and public affairs.
There are simply too many individuals to thank by name for their marvelous support over these years. Many doors have been opened to us as a result of the popularity of The Celator and we have made a lot of friends around the world. When undertaking this venture, we had no idea who might become interested in the publication, and even less of an idea how personal the involvement with our readers might become. The opportunity to meet and spend time with hundreds of collectors has been invaluable and enjoyable beyond measure. Collectors of ancient and medieval coins are a breed apart from mainstream society, and it is an honor to be associated with such dedicated and passionate individuals.
The real strength of the Celator, as we have stated so often in the past, is its fraternalism and loyal readership. This is in every respect YOUR publication. If you do not support it, it will fade into obscurity. We are merely the stewards of the day- not the reason for its being We fervently hope that you will continue to share discoveries and experiences with fellow readers, that you will offer constructive criticisms and that you will help to make the hobby accessible to a generation of young numismatists who have seen little classical inspiration in their education.
Above all, remember that there are others out there who are as fond of collecting as you are. This is the place where you can communicate with them and share your point of view!