World Coins

A man with an island who made his own coins

Jeff Starck's Half Puffin of Lundy is the latest #CWShowAndTell subject.

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Jeff Starck returns in our latest #CWShowAndTell video with an intriguing coin and its intriguing story.

“A man can own an island, and when a man owns an island, he can then issue his own coins,” Starck explains. “That’s what happened in Lundy, a privately owned island off the west coast of England until 1969, when the island was given to the National Trust. Forty years earlier, in 1929, a man named Martin Coles Harman issued his own coins and postage stamps, and here’s one of those coins today.”

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These coins had a distinct connection with the island. They feature the puffin, which is the bird that gave the island its name. Lundy means “Puffin Isle” in the Norse language. 

“Harmon ordered 50,000 of each denomination — a crazy number — ostensibly for use in the island’s pub and store. But let’s get real, 50,000 for a few dozen folks? They have, however, become collector’s items, and I certainly have prized mine.”

Watch his full video:

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