EAC continues series on early coin minting

Sholley provides third article in Penny-Wise series
Published : 03/09/12
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Craig Sholley’s third installment on the evolution of U.S. Mint coin production technology from 1792 through 1837 is addressed in the January issue of Penny-Wise, the official publication of Early American Coppers Inc.

In the third installment, Sholley examines coin production on manually operated screw presses. Sholley notes that “labor records, coining account books, and statements by the Mint Directors in various reports all provide significant evidence regarding the number of presses in operation at any given time.”

Records indicate, Sholley writes, that while the Mint likely possessed two presses in 1793, only one was in use at any given time because the number of laborers employed at the Mint did not permit simultaneous production on both machines. The number of presses available and the number in operation increased as the labor force was expanded, Sholley writes.

In another article, Mark Borckardt contributes information concerning the silver threepence pieces dated July 4, 1790, that were issued in Baltimore Town by Standish Barry, a watch and clock maker, as well as a goldsmith and silversmith.

Michael Spurlock provides an updated estimate of known rare half cents based on pedigrees for certain varieties of business strike half cents.

Alabama collector Tom Deck details his “(re)discovery” of a variety of 1825 Coronet cent first identified in a publication in 1883, but debunked several decades later as researchers began to believe it had never existed. The variety has since been verified by copper coin experts as a legitimate variety.

Robert L. Fagaly charts price-grade relationships in large cent type coinage relative to the Sheldon grading scale, introduced in Early American Cents by William H. Sheldon.

Information is provided on the schedule of activities for the EAC’s annual convention May 3 to 6 in Buffalo, N.Y.

EAC yearly dues cost $39 and support a Penny-Wise subscription among other membership benefits. A junior membership for those under age 18 is available for $5.

A membership application can be downloaded from the EAC website at www.eacs.org. ■

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