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Id/History On This Coin?

 
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Author Previous TopicReplies: 6 / Views: 413Next Topic  
New Member

United States
9 Posts
 Posted 08/06/2022  12:22 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add lukec77 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Hello all, I inherited my great uncle's coin collection and found this coin. Looks to be a King George III 2 Pence, but was wondering if anyone with more experience could help ID and provide a brief history of this coin. Was it used in early colonial America or purely in the Old Country? Thanks.

Valued Member
United States
50 Posts
 Posted 08/06/2022  2:17 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add DrPeper23 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I would agree with you that its a George III 2 Pence. It seems that they were issued in limited runs to help with a coin shortage, but since issued starting in 1797, I doubt it saw any use in the US, maybe some of the colonies.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twope...ecimal_coin)
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United States
24776 Posts
 Posted 08/06/2022  2:24 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Spence to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@luke, first welcome to CCF. Second, you will see that I have moved your thread over to the us subforum. This should help get some more knowledgeable eyes on it.
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United States
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 Posted 08/06/2022  2:52 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add lukec77 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@Spence, thanks for doing that! I wasn't quite sure where to post it initially so I appreciate it.
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New Zealand
4353 Posts
 Posted 08/07/2022  06:55 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Princetane to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
This is a cartwheel twopence coin issued in 1797. Just make sure it is 2 pence, if its about 41mm in size and weighs 56 grams its a twopence, if its 35mm in size and weighs about 30 grams its a penny.

These were issued as a one off in 1797 by Boulton and Watt at the Soho works in Birmingham to help with a copper coin shortage (And to attack some of the kazillion tradesmens tokens (Conders) issued between 1787 and 1796) and the coins were popular being perfectly round and containing exactly 1 or 2 ounces of Welsh copper in each one. The coins went around the world, mostly to the South Pacific colony of New South Wales and Van Diemens Land, but also North America and the Caribbean. The coins also served as good weights and even as measures.

8 of the pennies next to each other made 1 foot in length, 24 a yard!

However the raised rims wore quickly and being copper, they were soft (Bronze added in 1860 hardened the coins greatly) and most ended up super worn like this one.

In 1799 a second issue came out of Halfpennies and Farthings and then again in 1806 and 1807. After that in 1821 a reduced size copper coinage of Pennies, Halfpence, Farthings and colonial Half farthings was issued but at a smaller weight, yet higher quality production process.

Still these cartwheels were the first British coins produced by steam powered machinery rather than a hammer or a screw press.

I love COINS!!!
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United States
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 Posted 08/07/2022  1:33 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add lukec77 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@princetane Thank you so much for that thorough response, that's exactly the little history lesson I was looking for! Cheers :)
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 Posted 08/07/2022  6:30 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Sap to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
As they were issued after the Revolution, and indeed after the 1787 treaty and 1792 Coinage Act, they are not regarded as "colonial coins used in the US". America had already moved away from pounds, shillings and pence and onto the dollar standard by then. "Foreign coins" were still widely used in the US up until the 1830s, but these were mainly gold and silver coins; foreign bronze coins were rarely needed or used.

As for the denomination, the usual markers that tell the difference between the penny and twopence coins are worn away on this example, so the only way to tell is by weight. Does it weigh about 1 ounce, or about 2 ounces? They were originally struck to 1 avoirdupois ounce (not troy ounce) per penny. They did make handy standard weights, as Princetane noted; shopkeepers would often use them as shop weights. I suspect any cartwheels that made it to the US would end up being used as shop weights, rather than as money.
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