When thinking of coins found in shipwrecks, the mind likely wanders
to silver and gold.
But one lot from the Stephen Album Rare Coins May 18 to 20 auction
is evidence that coins of other metals are sometimes recovered from
The auction includes a piece of copper plate money, denominated 2
dalers. The Swedish money was issued in 1750, late during the reign of
King Frederik I.
The plate money was recovered from the wreck of the Nicobar,
which went down in a July storm in 1783, off the coast of False Bay
(Valsbaai), South Africa. The wreck was rediscovered in 1987 by local
fishermen, who salvaged some 3,000 copper plates.
The wreck is one of just a few famous shipwrecks of the Danish East
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The Nicobar was outbound to India with a load of Swedish
copper plate money. Demonetized in 1777, these plates were being
shipping to India for manufacture into Danish Indian coinage.
According to research cited by the auction house, most plates known of
this type are from the wreck.
This example measures 190 millimeters wide and 165 millimeters tall.
Though the plate is corroded, the central stamp and one corner stamp
According to the auction house, the example is in Very Good condition.
It has an estimate of $100 to $150.