United States, New England One Shilling, (1652)

Description
Produced at John Hull's private mint in Boston. Obverse: Script NE (for New England). Reverse: XII for twelve pence, or one shilling. Boston was founded in 1630. Within two decades, it had become a prosperous, thriving community, engaging in legal trade with the mother country and clandestine trade with Spanish America.
Perpetually short of coinage, the proper Bostonians came up with an unorthodox idea: they would take a portion of the silver coming in from the south, melt it down, and make coins from it. Their first efforts were modest. They recast the silver, beat it into thin sheets, then cut more-or-less round blanks from it. The blanks were struck with simple designs, once on each side.
The resulting coins were fairly easy to counterfeit. They were very easy to clip off some of the metal (and a portion of their value would be thereby removed). Embarrassed bureaucrats soon legislated more sophisticated designs that took up all of each side of the coin.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
coin
date made
1652
maker
Massachusetts Bay Colony
Physical Description
silver (overall metal)
0 (overall die axis)
0 (overall die axis measurement)
struck (overall production method)
Measurements
overall: .1 cm x 2.8 cm; 1/32 in x 1 3/32 in
place of issue
United States: Massachusetts
ID Number
1982.0798.0001
catalog number
1982.0798.0001
accession number
1982.0798
subject
Coins, Currency and Medals
See more items in
Political History: National Numismatic Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Norweb, Emery May Holden
Publication title
Glossary of Coins and Currency Terms
Publication URL
http://americanhistory.si.edu/coins/glossary.cfm
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