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Andaman Islands Square Rupee From 1860? Can Anyone Shed Some Light On This?

 
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Author Previous TopicReplies: 8 / Views: 274Next Topic  
Valued Member
United States
68 Posts
 Posted 01/24/2021  02:22 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add newguy22 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Came across this piece up for auction on ebay, but it just seems so peculiar. There doesn't seem to be any information about it available anywhere. The font seems a bit weird for a piece from that time period, but I don't know.




A few fun facts, the Andaman Islands are the small archipelago where the Sentinelese tribe can be found. If you don't know them, they are notorious for killing any intruders who approach their island, including that poor missionary a few years back. Apparently, the British were there around that time period.
Would love to know if any of you could possibly shed some light on this piece.
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United States
18628 Posts
 Posted 01/24/2021  07:56 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Spence to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@new, yes I agree not typical for coinage of that time period. I found one for sale on the 'bay and the description calls it "fantasy coinage", but does provide an attribution:

ANDAMAN ISLANDS 1860 1 Rupee Bruce X#1 Rectangular 32mm x 39mm Copper XF, Uniface, Fantasy coinage

"If you climb a good tree, you get a push."
-----Ghanaian proverb

"The danger we all now face is distinguishing between what is authentic and what is performed."
-----King Adz

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Russian Federation
3388 Posts
 Posted 01/24/2021  12:07 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add january1may to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
not a 19th century font and probably a fantasy issue.

There had been a real token issue for the Andaman Islands around that time, though those tokens are extremely rare; more information in the Numista entry.
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Australia
13549 Posts
 Posted 01/24/2021  6:23 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Sap to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The "X#1" is a catalogue reference to its entry in the Krause "Unusual World Coins" catalogue. This book is where Krause puts all the unofficial coins, unrecognized governments and fantasy coins.

This particular "coin" comes in both copper and aluminium versions. Since aluminium was still rarer than gold back then, it's safe to assume these "coins" were made much, much later than 1860. Here's the NGC database entry. The comment Krause makes about it is worth quoting:

Quote:
A modern fantasy issue of "unknown" origin struck without any government authorization for obvious confusion of the numismatic community.
Don't say "infinitely" when you mean "very"; otherwise, you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite. - C. S. Lewis
Valued Member
United States
50 Posts
 Posted 01/24/2021  7:31 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add captainmandrake1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I saw the same item (and bid on it!) and did a little bit of research. There was an issue for the island in 1860 of paper cards with the denomination of one rupee that was used as emergency money in the penal colony until the number of forgeries led to the appearance of holed copper tokens.
My hypothesis is that this modern token is a reproduction of the original and rare paper card token from 1860 (but I've never seen one so it's just a hypothesis).
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 Posted 01/24/2021  9:09 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add tdziemia to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Since aluminium was still rarer than gold back then...


Indeed. Not produced in commercial quantities until 1888. First coins for circulation in 1907.

Valued Member
United States
68 Posts
 Posted 01/25/2021  01:13 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add newguy22 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks to everyone, you all had some great things to say! :)
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United States
50 Posts
 Posted 01/25/2021  5:58 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add captainmandrake1 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Wow, it sold for 449 dollars! Bonkers!
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Turkey
123 Posts
 Posted 01/26/2021  2:00 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add apeka to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
It is a prison coin. Since 1857 British used Andaman islands as penal colony for Indian Political Prisoners. The reason for that is the current prisons on all India was full of captured resisting Indians.

It was not necessary to build a proper prison as the islands were so far from the mainland and it was surrounded by the wild hostile tribes. So the ones that were trying to runaway were generally being attacked by canibals.

I have an instagram page about coins and their histories. You can find below an andaman coin I have shared
there.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CI_xxqFLdzu/
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