Memories from 40 years in the stamp and coin business
by Brian Grant Duff

2005 at the Bay and All Nations

Jim Hennok, our old Queen Street East dealer neighbour in Toronto, died. He was an avid collector, and expert marksman, who left everything to his employees.

I want to thank my coworkers for their assistance, and often friendship, over the years. I will name more names later, but want to particularly thank Heather Capocci and Eric Ngai who served with me at Eaton’s and the Bay.

A relic from All Nations

Some problems began at the Bay during this time. Eric called me on a Sunday, when I had a table at the B.C. Philatelic Society Stamp Show, to say we had had a break in overnight at our fourth floor location.

I had to pack up and leave the show to deal with the aftermath. First, I had to find John Jamieson in the show hotel complex and return a 12d black and Seaway invert that he had placed with me for the show. John had no table at the show and was not in his hotel room. I found him in the farflung cafe and returned the valuable stamps. Albert Tanner watched my show stand in the meantime.

John Jamieson, owner of Saskatoon Stamp Centre, at the National Postage Stamp Show in Toronto.

It was the first of several break ins at the Bay. People who needed coins more than I did stayed in the large store overnight, smashed showcases to steal, then broke out of an exit door, or walked out in the morning. They also stole small appliances from showcases on the main floor. Because Bay security couldn’t handle the problem, I even spent a long night on a stakeout, walkie talkie in hand. I didn’t catch anyone either.

Part 1 of Brian’s 40 years in the business can be found here

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