Volume 11 Issue 5                                INTERNET EDITION - Established 1996                               May 2006

The name 'Tasmanian Numismatist' is used with the permission  of the Executive Committee of the 'Tasmanian Numismatic Society' however, any comments published in this privately produced newsletter do not necessarily reflect the views of the 'Tasmanian Numismatic Society', its Executive Committee or its members. Bearing in mind our public disclaimers,  the Internet links selected by the authors of this  newsletter are usually provided as a complimentary source of reference to the featured article in regard to: (1) Illustrations and, (2) to provide additional important information. 

Any notices of concern to 'Tasmanian Numismatic Society' members will be included in the 'Society Snippets' section.

We trust that this issue of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition) newsletter will continue to provide interesting reading.




Anyone who wishes to apply for membership to the non-profit making organization, and who is prepared to abide by the rules of the Society and its aim of promoting the study and enjoyment of the hobby of numismatics, should contact the following address for an application form and details of subscriptions: 



Tasmanian Numismatic Society.

G. P. O. Box 884J

Hobart. 7001.



by Graeme Petterwood © 2005


Remember - be astute when you are handed change - not all the wonders of numismatics have been discovered yet - and they don't have to be shiny and new! This edition again features an assortment of  'trivia' that I think is of interest and I trust it will prove educational and entertaining to you as well. 

All or any prices quoted in articles in this newsletter, unless stipulated, are estimates only and they should not be considered to be an offer to sell or purchase the items mentioned or used as illustrations. Please note that the photoscans of numismatic items are usually not to size or scale, but - wherever possible - they are from the authors' own collection or the extensive picture library of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition.



In keeping with the policy of educating and entertaining our readers, the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition' is always pleased to advise when something 'new' comes along that may appeal to any section of the numismatic audience. This editor was  recently advised that a new dedicated Internet site entitled 'Tassie Tokens' has now become available with details of Tasmanian Souvenir and Special Event Tokens.

For the last 7 - 8 years, I have been casually accumulating different sorts of U.S. and world trade tokens and transport passes as well as  items available from local Australian sources, so it certainly seemed that it would be a good idea to explore the depth of local product. at a personal interest level.

After consulting with 'Tassie Tokens', who were most obliging with product information, and a few fellow collectors, whom I knew collected souvenir tokens, I was quite surprised when I found out the variety of local items available on what is known as the 'Tasmanian Tourist Trail'

In fact, it is a very impressive range of tokens  - and, if a numismatic percentage is applied to the number of sales is an indication -  I would have to conclude that souvenir token collecting - which always has had some following amongst the numismatic fringe-field.of exonumia -  appears to be expanding at a potentially exciting rate.

Various individual venues had introduced a token or two in the past, and special event groups occasionally got in on the act, but there now seems to be a trend where well-established organisations are co-operating to release commemorative token issues that do not clash with other major tourist venues - and are forming these 'tourist trails' - which, basically, cater for modern tourists in a hurry. As the sale of a souvenir of some description is a sensible and economic part of the deal to promote the venue or event, many operators have opted for a presentation of this more permanent, self-selling, medallic type of memento. It is not a new commercial concept to issue a token of some description, in fact the idea is as old as coinage, but the idea of this new 'Tassie Tokens Collectors Club' is something different that should cater to the growing collector market that had started to flourish along-side the tourist trade.

I am now putting my few local souvenir tokens in a folder of their own and, being the collecting magpie that I am, it has given me another range of stuff that I will have to justify as far as storage room is concerned - but, at least it won't cost me a fortune. 

In the absence of an official catalogue at this stage, this initial list (below) is taken from locally issued tokens that have been sighted in collections by this writer or from details that have already been published. We have endeavoured to list any known errors or varieties - however, as previously mentioned, the souvenir token range is an on-going thing and the 'Tassie Token Collector's Club' site will be able to make sure collectors don't miss out in regard to products or information that may be relevant.

I have found that sizes of the local produsts vary slightly from 30mm - 32mm diameter (and 2.5mm - 3.0mm in thickness) however, I have chosen to use 30mm as a reasonable average in the table below instead of measuring and recording every token - that is something for collectors to play with if they will.

The 'Tassie Token' packaged items are set into a 55mm x 88mm (approx.) cardboard holder with a descriptive text. and encapsulated in a sturdy clear soft plastic envelope  They can be set in a horizontal or vertical display pack.

Obviously, mintage details and issue dates etc. shown here are subject to official correction and, no doubt, other variations or interesting facts will be available from the new 'Collector's Club'.


Since 2000, a growing range of souvenir tokens has been produced for the most prestigious tourist attractions, or to commemorate  special occasions within the island state of Tasmania, by the Hobart based firm of 'Tasmedals' who are internationally known experts in the manufacture and distribution of high quality tokens, medals and medallions.

Due to numerous requests by collectors and others, who are not in a position to personally visit each of Tasmania's outstanding tourist venues or attend every special event, 'Tasmedals' decided to work in conjunction with these organisations to cater for the needs of this section of the numismatic public.

The formation of 'Tassie Tokens', to act as the major out-of-venue distributing subsidiary, was the most logical step to take.

Refer: http://www.tassietokens.com.au/index.php

'Tassie Tokens Collectors' Club' will ensure that new releases do not slip by unoticed by genuine collecting members of their club.

Registration is free and there are other benefits available to subscribers, such as a periodical newsletter. For these details refer to the site address above.

As with any on-going enterprise, there are improvements, design changes and completely new items becoming available on a regular basis. For those who may be unfamiliar with the past work of 'OZMINT' the manufacturing arm of 'Tasmedals', it may be an appropriate time to feature a small selection of the current tokens that are now be available from 'Tassie Tokens' - as well as a nostalgic trip down memory lane  - to highlight some of the differences that have taken place over the last 6 years and have led to this new development.


The original issues of 'Tasmedals' event and souvenir tokens were made to order from dies prepared in New Zealand and were available directly to the visitor at a Tasmanian tourist venue, or a participant at a special event..

The initial release was made to the 'Hash House Harriers' at their Interhash Convention held in Hobart in February, 2000.

A short series of generic Tasmanian Devil tourist 'dollar' souvenir tokens followed later that year, again in loose form, but it wasn't until early 2001 that the concept took its first major step forward into quality packaging and presentation for Tasmania's premier tourist attraction, Port Arthur Historic Site

Each token was inserted into a sturdy descriptive holder and encapsulated in a plastic envelope. During the last 5 years, a popular series of machine dispensed tokens has been available to site visitors and some of these have been upgraded with more relevant designs as the Port Arthur Authority expanded its tourist educational  program

Other organisations, particularly those that make up the Tasmanian Tourist Trail, were quick to follow suit and the wide selection of tokens has now attracted a section of the numismatic community who specialize in such items, and that is where the new 'Tassie Tokens Collectors Club' comes in.

The decision to bring all functions under the one corporate umbrella and consolidate a liason with dedicated local Australian manufacturers was neccessary in 2003 to establish a tigher quality control than had been previously experienced with the earlier loose tokens. Due to some problems with the original die-maker's quality control, a small number of 'error or variety'  tokens entered the system. However, on a more positive note, these early mistakes or variations -  which mainly consist of upset or rotated dies - give the more fastidious token seeker a real quest to complete the complete range..

As newer tokens have been introduced, many are now issued in the popular point-of-sale vertical hang pack as well as the horizontal dispenser pack style - so it is possible that a packaging variation amongst some existing tokens will also provide another challenge.

One of the most sought after packaged Port Arthur tokens was original produced in 2000 and depicted a convict with Ball and Chain - except, historically, this was not the usual practise at Port Arthur. Only about 500 of these had been made in the original batch of packaged Ball and Chain token and were dispensed prior to the error being discovered. The design was withdrawn to be replaced with the historically correct Leg-Irons version later the same year.. Other convict transportation items shown with an asterisk* are current, and were designed for ,and are available from, the Port Arthur Historic Site or associated venues.

'Tassie Tokens' have also advised the 'Internet Edition' that an extremely limited number of aluminium pieces (and one or two other pattern samples in other off-strike metals), were produced in New Zealand as design trials for 'Tasmedals' and were held for archival purposes. The aluminium trials only covered 'Tasmedals' earliest token designs prior to 'Ozmint' becoming involved in production in 2003 and, to the best of their knowledge, all are accounted for or have been recycled.  (Still, you never know your luck - so it's worth remembering !)


Note: Any commercial enterprises or group, with reasonably active public contacts, who consider they have the potential to retail quantities of tokens under their own logos, should contact Roger McNeice at  'Tassie Tokens' direct for manufacturing requirement details. Contact information on their web-site.


Minted Label Type - Event or Venue Size - Composition Quantity Minted (and noted Varieties) Presentation Date of Mfr
N.Z. TASMEDALS INTERHASH DOLLAR 2000 30mm Brass 1000 (Slight Die upset noted) Loose 2000
N.Z. TASMEDALS TOURIST DOLLAR (Generic -Devil) 30mm Brass 2000 (various Upset dies, thin planchet) Loose 2000 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS PORT ARTHUR CHURCH 30mm Brass 300 (Mule with Generic Dollar) Loose 2000 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS CONVICT (Ball and Chain) 30mm Brass 500 (Incorrect depiction) Packaged 2000 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS CONVICT (Leg Irons) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2000 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT CONVICT  (Leg Irons - Enamelled)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS ISLE of the DEAD 30mm Brass COMMON Loose 2000 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ISLE of the DEAD (Enamelled)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS LOVE TOKEN 30mm Copper 2000 Packaged 2000 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT LOVE TOKEN (# 2 Obverse)* 30mm Copper COMMON Packaged 2005 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS GUARDING 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2000 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA. OZMINT GUARDING (# 2 Obverse)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS GHOST TOURS 30mm Brass COMMON (90 degrees Upset dies) Loose 2000 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS GHOST TOURS 30mm Brass COMMOM Packaged 2000 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GHOST TOURS (# 2 Obverse)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS MARITIME MUSEUM - HOBART 30mm Brass COMMON (Various Upset dies) Loose 2000 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS SHOT TOWER 30mm Brass 1000 Plus Loose 2001 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS SHOT TOWER 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2001 (N.D,)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT SHOT TOWER (Enamelled) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS SEAHORSE WORLD 30mm Copper COMMON Packaged 2001 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT SEAHORSE WORLD (# 2 Obverse) 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical Packaging current) Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS DON RIVER RAILWAY TRAIN 30mm Brass 2000 Plus (A trial pattern variety noted) Loose 2001 (N.D.)
N.Z. TASMEDALS ELLISON HAWKER BOOKSHOP 30mm $5 Copper 250 Loose 2001
N.Z. TASMEDALS ELLISON HAWKER BOOKSHOP 30mm $10 Nickel 250 Loose 2001
N.Z. TASMEDALS ELLISON HAWKER BOOKSHOP 30mm $20 G-Brass 250 Loose 2001
N.Z. TASMEDALS PENGUIN RAILWAY CENTENARY 30mm Gold-Brass 2000 Packaged 2001
AUSTRALIA OZMINT MAY QUEEN Sailing Ship 30mm Brass 1000 Packaged 2004 (N.D)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT RICHMOND GAOL (# 2 Obverse)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Mt. Lyell Smelter) 30mm Copper COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Magnet Mine) 30mm Aluminium COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Lynchford Mine) 30mm 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Huon Pine) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Rack and Pinion) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ABT RAILWAY (Rinadeena Crystals) 30mm Aluminium COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT FIRST ENCOUNTER (Flinders -Baudin) - for South Australia 30mm Aluminium 3000 Packaged 2002 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT RE-OPENING BELLERIVE OVAL 30mm Nickel 40 Presentation Pieces Packaged 2003
AUSTRALIA OZMINT AGFEST 21st. BIRTHDAY 30mm Brass 3000 (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2003
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRUBB SHAFT GOLD MINE 30mm Gold-Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT Mt. LYELL PENNY 30mm Copper COMMON (Holed & Edge-marked) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT FEMALE FACTORY (Women's Prison)* 30mm Bronze COMMON (Vertical packaging) Paackaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT RUSSELL FALLS (Enamelled) 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT PENITENTIARY CHAPEL SITE* 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT BARK MILL AND WINE CENTRE (Enamelled) 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT THYLACINE 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging) Packaged 2004 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA TASSIE TOKENS DON RIVER RAILWAY TRAIN 30mm Brass COMMON (Vertical packaging current) Packaged 2006 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA TASSIE TOKENS PORT ARTHUR - PORT PUER (Boy's Prison)* 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2006 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GUARDING (New Die) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2005 (N.D.)




Early issues of souvenir tokens - loose



Convict with Ball & Chain - and historically correct design Convict with Leg Irons replacement



Original designs for Isle of the Dead and Convict Love Token

Redesigned to give deeper matt images in 2003


Famous Cessation of Transportation Medal depiction on token


Ellison Hawker Bookshop redeemable Gift Tokens in 3 values - loose


Original designs for the Abt Wilderness Railway showing features on the current train route.

Future issues will feature the new corporate name 'Wilderness Railway'.


West Coast (Zeehan) Pioneer Memorial Museum token - featuring mineral Crocite


In addition to Tasmanian venues, a series of tokens for the Granite Island Nature Park, the Whale Centre at Victor Harbor as well as the Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Zoological Park - all in South Australia - were first produced during 2003. These attractive tokens, in their descriptive cards and envelopes, have proven very popular as souvenirs of the visit.- as well as to local fauna lovers. Native and exotic birds, local attractions and animals are featured - as well as whales and dolphins.

Just after release of the Adelaide Zoo Blue and Gold Macaw token, an error was discovered in the descriptive text and the initial batch had to be withdrrawn and re-carded correctly. It is believed that approximately 50 cards reading 'Southern White' Macaw escaped into the public's hands


AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRANITE ISLAND (Horse Drawn Tram) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRANITE ISLAND (Dolphin Tours) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRANITE ISLAND (Little Penguin Tours) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRANITE ISLAND (Leafy Sea Dragon) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT GRANITE ISLAND (Southern Right Whales) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT WHALE CENTRE - VICTOR HARBOR (Southern Right Whales) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Cotton Top Tamarin) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Yellow-footed Wallaby) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Orang-utan) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Scimitar-horned Oryx) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Blue-Gold Macaw) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Souther White Macaw) 30mm Brass Approx. 50 (Text Error) Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT ADELAIDE ZOO (Giraffe) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT MONARTO ZOOLOGICAL PARK (Scimitar-horned Oryx) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)
AUSTRALIA OZMINT MONARTO ZOOLOGICAL PARK (Southern White Rhinosceros) 30mm Brass COMMON Packaged 2003 (N.D.)


A selection of tokens produced for South Australian nature parks.



"Tassie Tokens" Internet site:  http://www.tassietokens.com.au/index.php

"Tasmanian Numismatist" - Internet Edition, previous issues 2000 - 2005

T.N.S. members' personal collections.



A recent request from a young lady, attending school in Brisbane, Australia, for some assistance with a science project, indicated that some students are unfamiliar with the metallic composition of our Australian coinage - both past and present.

It would also be reasonable to assume that there would be some members of the adult public - including our international readers - who also might wish to know the answer to the same question. "What are our coins made of?" - and, perhaps, a few other bits of trivia thrown in for luck.

I trust this brief article will uncover some snippets of numismatic education that might provide useful one day.


In 1966, Australian changed from Imperial coinage with the introduction of a new range of decimal coins as detailed below. The most obvious change was in the composition of the metals used in the manufacturing process. Many older Australians were not altogether happy with the loss of intrinsic value 'silver' coinage but the cost factor of maintaining a tradition was relatively enormous due to the spiralling price in refined silver at that time

A compromise had been reached in that one coin in the circulating range - the Fifty Cents - would be made in a high silver content alloy.

However, the 80% Silver 50 Cent coin was withdrawn after the first issue in 1966 because, by then, the price of Silver was far more than the coin was worth - and, as it was still being pushed up even higher by speculators, the Royal Australian Mint decided that no further Silver  50 Cent coins were to be issued for general circulation.

During 1967 and 1968, the Mint did not make any 50 Cent coins whatsoever, but concentrated on designing an acceptable replacement and, in 1969, a large and clumsy dodectagonal (12 sided) coin was introduced bearing the same obverse and reverse as the original coin. It was made from an identical metal composition as the other 'silver' coins in the range. Our extended love affair with circulating silver coins had come to an end, albeit, very reluctantly!



Bronze - One and Two Cent coins - 97% Copper 2.5% Zinc 0.5% Nickel (Both coins have been discontinued although we still work in One Cent units)

Copper-Nickel - Five, Ten and Twenty Cent - 75% Copper 25% Nickel

Silver (Round) 1966 only - Fifty Cent - 80% Silver 20% Copper (Withdrawn in 1966 due to Silver price increase)

Copper-Nickel dodectagonal - Fifty Cent - 75% Copper 25% Nickel



1966 Original Decimal Coinage issue - Reverses artist Stuart Devlin.

1980 Proof Set showing revised 50 Cent coin.


Aluminium-Bronze 1984 One Dollar and 1988 Two Dollar coins. (Scans enlarged).

Featuring - Five bounding Kangaroos (reverse artist Stuart Devlin) - Australian Aboriginal elder (reverse artist Horst Hahne).

 $1.00 = size 25mm, weight 9 grms --- $2.00 = size 20.62mm, weight 8.35 grms.




Aluminium-Bronze - One Dollar - 92% Copper 6% Aluminium 2% Nickel



Aluminium-Bronze - Two Dollar - 92% Copper 6% Aluminium 2% Nickel

Aluminium-Bronze - Five Dollars - 92% Copper 6% Aluminium 2% Nickel. This coin is classified as a circulation coin with a recorded mintage of 3,000,000 However,it was not released directly to the public but packaged in various way by corporate organisations. It is legal tender, but really should be re-classified as it is not 'known' by traders in the commercial market place.



As well as basic coinage, including special event or anniversary issues (see below), individual coins or sets of circulation coins that have been specially prepared and packaged retail at a far higher price than face value within the numismatic community.

In addition, many non-basic commemorative coins have been produced as NCLT (Non-circulating Legal Tender) - they can also be cashed in at the bank for the value shown on the coin even though they are legal tender they are not classed as circulation coinage.

As some of the commemorative coins are made from either  92.5% Sterling Silver, 99.99% pure Silver, 99.99% pure Platinum or Palladium, and  99.9% pure Gold, they are classified as 'Investment' NCLT coinage and are usually traded as bullion - or as numismatic items with a high premium above the bullion value - and, because of the plethora of coins in this area of investment numismatics, novices will need a catalogue to refer to.


2004 Mint set containing selected basic coins that have been specially packaged prior to circulation.

A selection of Australian commemorative 20, 50 Cent and Dollar coins from actual circulation.


Queen Elizabeth II - Her Majesty's original 1966 effigy changed in 1985 and 1999

Artists - Arnold Machin, Raphael Maklouf and Ian Rank Broadley.


Decimal Coinage standard specifications

One Cent = 17.53mm. - 2.59grm.

Two Cents = 21.59mm. - 5.18grm.

Five Cents = 19.41mm. - 2.83grm.

Ten Cents = 23,60mm. - 5.66grm.

Twenty Cents = 28.52mm. - 11.31grm.

Fifty Cents (Silver) = 31.50mm. - 13.28grm.

Fifty Cents = 31.50mm. - 15.55grm.



In 1852, a small quantity of about 25,000 Gold One Pound coins were struck in Adelaide during the goldrush years under a special approval from the controlling British Government - but only after considerable political pressure was brought to bear.

Coinages of 91.67% Gold to 8.33 Silver were struck in the Sydney branch of the Royal Mint from 1855 onwards in denominations of Half Sovereign (equivalent to Ten Shillings) and Sovereign (equivalent to One Pound or 20 Shillings).

The gold content of the Half Sovereign was .1177 oz and the Sovereign was .2354 oz.

The earliest Gold coins had borne the identifying legend 'SYDNEY MINT - AUSTRALIA' on the reverse but, due to British intransigence regarding their empirical place in the world at that time, the practice ceased during the late 1860's and the Australian colonial produced coins reverted back to the imperial reverses.  From 1871, the Sovereign and Half-Sovereign coins were bearing standardized British shield designs and the Silver content was replaced by the same amount of Copper in keeping with the British issues.

The famous St. George slaying the Dragon  reverse, by Benedetto Pistrucci, was introduced to all British colonial Gold Sovereign coinage by 1893 and this design continued on until 1931. (Refer to one of the above catalogues for further details)

However, the Gold Sovereign coins had a limited circulation, even though they were produced in relatively high numbers. Many went back to England as bullion or into the bank accounts of English entrepreneurs and finance houses who were reaping huge profits out of Australia.

The general public were not usually in the habit of dealing with Gold and needed basic small-change coinage for everday use but, as previously mentioned, they had to wait until the Federation process was complete and Australia had achieved a voice regarding our own unique coinage and currency - and the capability to produce it.

For those younger readers - aged 40 and under - I have included a small history lesson to indicate what Australian  Imperial coinage consisted of.

Prior to Federation and for nearly 20 years afterwards, until we started to make our own money in our own Mints, Australians were still using British or British-made Australian coinage made at the Birmingham or Indian Mints.


ISSUED FROM 1911 - 1964

Bronze - Half-penny and Penny from 1911 to 1964 - 97% Copper 2.5% Zinc 0.5% Tin



King George V (1911 - 1936) Commonwealth of Australia Half-penny effigy obverse and Text reverse

King George VI (1938 - 1952) and Queen Elizabeth II (1953 - ) Half-penny effigy obverses and common Kangaroo reverse.

Weight Half-penny 5.67grm - Diameter 25.5mm. The 1938 has Text reverse. From 1939 Kangaroo reverse.

Weight Penny 9.45grm - Diameter 30.8mm. From 1938 Kangaroo reverse.


Sterling silver - Threepence, Sixpence, Shilling and Florin (Two Shillings) from 1910 to 1945 - 92.5% Silver 7.5% Copper

Silver - Threepence, Sixpence, Shilling and Florin (Two shillings) from 1946 to 1963 (Threepence until 1964) - 50% Silver 40% Copper 5% Zinc 5% Nickel


 King Edward VII (1910 only) - King George V  92.5% Sterling Silver Shilling

King George VI - Queen Elizabeth II 50% Silver Alloy Shilling


The effigies of the monarchs (shown above) were used on all pre-decimal Australian 'silver' coinage obverses - and the Coat-of-Arms under the Federation Star (shown below), with denomination legend differences, were common reverses to all  'silver' coins until 1938 when King George VI made several changes on his coinage issues. The Threepence reverse was changed to show 3 stalks of wheat and a banner ribbon, the Sixpence remained virtually unchanged, the Shilling attained the head of a famous Merino Ram and an updated Australian Royal Coat-of-Arms was applied to the Florin.





K.G. VI  50% Silver Alloy Wheat reverse Threepence and QE II Coat-of-Arms Sixpence

K.G. V  92.5% Sterling Silver Shilling Federation Star Coat-of-Arms reverse and K.G. VI  50% Silver Alloy Shilling Merino Ram

K.G. V  92.5% Sterling Silver Florin old Federation Star Coat-of-Arms and K.G. VI  50% Silver Alloy Florin new Commonwealth Coat-of-Arms.

(Threepence 16mm dia. - 1.41grm and Sixpence 19mm dia. - 2.83grm).

(Shilling 23.5mm dia. - 5.65grm and Florin 28.5mm dia. - 11.31grm).



ISSUED IN 1937 - Mintage 1,008,000 as a Commemorative Circulating Coin celebrating the Ascension of King George VI to the throne.

Sterling Silver Crown (Five Shillings) - 92.5% Silver 7.5% Copper

ISSUED IN 1938 - Mintage 101,000 as a circulation coin. It proved too large to be readily accepted and was quickly withdrawn.

Sterling Silver Crown (Five Shillings) - 92.5% Silver 7.5% Copper



King George VI Commemorative 1937 Crown issued to celebrate his ascension to the English throne.

1938 Crown was issued in a limited quantity but proved unpopular as a circulation piece and was withdrawn.

(38.5mm dia. - 28.27grm).


Two Half-penny coins - often pronounced hay-penny - made a Penny with 240 Pennies to an Imperial Pound.

Three Penny coins made a Threepence - often pronounced Thrippence - (sl. - a trey) with 80 Threepences to an Imperial Pound.

Two Threepences made a Sixpence (sl. zac) with 40 Sixpences to an Imperial Pound.

Two Sixpences made a Shilling (sl. deener or a Bob) with 20 Shillings to an ImperialPound.

Two Shillings made a Florin (sl. two Bob) with 10 Florins to an Imperial Pound.

Five Shillings made a Crown (sl. Dollar or five Bob) with 4 Crowns to an Imperial Pound.

Two Crowns  made Ten Shillings (sl. ten Bob) with 2 Ten shillings to an Imperial Pound.

Five Florins also made Ten Shillings.

Two Ten Shillings (notes or an equivalent amount of coin multiples) made a Imperial Pound note (sl. Quid)


At the changeover in 1966,  the coinage exchange between Imperial  and Decimal denominations were set at equivalent rates of existing coins, wherever possible, and both types circulated together until the older coinage was gradually withdrawn from the market place.

Some old silver coins are still found, and are still legal tender, but most were reclaimed by the banks and returned to the Mint be melted down as bullion.



Half-Penny - No exact equivalent. Two approximately equalled One Cent, but they had to be used in multiples to equate with new coin values.

(A large Bronze coin that was quickly withdrawn. Selected dates have attained a higher numismatic value because of scarcity or some other reason - but many are hoarded and only have bronze bullion value. Refer to a catalogue for current market value)

Penny - 12 (or equivalent half-penny coins to value) equalled 10 new decimal Cents.

(The large Bronze penny coin was not an exact equivalent so it was quickly  withdrawn in favour of the smaller One Cent coin. A Two Cent coin denomination was introduced to enable an easier exact multiplier up to the Five and Ten Cent level.  Selected dates in Pennies have attained a higher numismatic value because of scarcity or some other reason - but a great  many are hoarded and only have bronze bullion value. Refer to a catalogue.)



Silver Threepence - No equivalent. Two equalled 5 new decimal cents, but they had to be used in multiples to equate with new coin values.

(A tiny Silver coin it was quickly withdrawn because of its bullion value. These have attained a numismatic value far above their Silver content due to their scarcity. Refer to a catalogue for current market value.)

Silver Sixpence (or assorted Imperial coins to value) - equalled 5 new decimal cents.

Silver Shilling (or assorted Imperial coins to value) - equalled 10 new decimal cents

Silver Florin (or assorted Imperial coins to value) - equalled 20 new decimal cents.

(Replaced quicky with the Copper-Nickel coins because of their silver content. Most Australian Silver coins have excellent collectable value if in a high grade of preservation. Refer to a catalogue for current market values.)


Ten Shillings (note or assorted Imperial coins to value) - equalled One new decimal Dollar (note).One Dollar note replaced in 1984 by Al-Bronze coin.

One Pound (note or assorted Imperial coins to value) - equalled Two new decimal Dollars (note). Two dollar note replaced in 1988 by Al-Bronze coin.






Main Reference.

"The Pocket Guide to Australian Coins and Banknotes" by Greg McDonald. (13th. Edition 496 pages)



As previously mentioned in past issues of this newsletter - and restated in the previous article - if you are a dedicated numismatist , or even just a 'plain old coin collector' like me - the investment made in purchasing reliable catalogues will be money well spent.  I thoroughly recommend the books mentioned in articles in this newsletter as being wonderful assets for your numismatic home library. Most of the information shown here has been attained by referral to these catalogues. The old adage - 'BUY the BOOKS!' - to learn about your hobby - is absolutely true.


The most economical printed ones - of a basic nature - are readily available at major bookstores or numismatic dealers and most appear to be currently retailing at about AUD $25.00 - $30.00 each. New editions are released annually to keep collectors up-to-date with the latest coin issues.


"The Pocket Guide to Australian Coins and Banknotes" by Greg McDonald. (13th. Edition 496 pages)

P.O. Box 649, Lavington, N.S.W. 2641.


Email: greg.mcdonald@optusnet.com.au

This annual guide has been specially designed to fit into a jacket pocket and it is crammed with information that you would normally only find in a larger and more costly catalogue. It has been highly recommended by reviewers, dealers and collectors alike for over 13 years..Great for coin fairs and markets.


"Renniks Australian Coin and Banknote Values",  produced by Renniks Publications Pty.Ltd.

Unit 3, 37-39 Green Street, Banksmeadow, N.S.W. 2019


Email: info@renniks.com

This is another recommended and very informative catalogue that has been available for a great many years, but this one is designed more for leisurely home use. My earliest Renniks dates back to 1965 (Third Edition) and cost 12 shillings and Sixpence ($1.25)


"COINWEB - The Coinage & Banknotes of Australians" by Alan Austin.

The COINWEB discs I have obtained over the last few years were from:

M.R. Roberts 'Wynyard Coin Centre'

Lower Concourse, Wynyard Railway Station, Sydney. N.S.W. 2000


Phone (02)9299 2047

This annual CD catalogue is currently available for a special price of AUD $20.00 from this long-established dealer. Postage extra.

It also contains information about Tradesmens' Tokens. Also available to M.R. Roberts' customers, on request, is a free newsletter entitled 'NumisNews' - a very informative illustrated booklet of about 20 glossy pages.


The "Australasian Coin & Banknote Magazine"

P.O.Box 6313, North Ryde, N.S.W. 2113


Email: bixlives@nsw.bigpond.net.au

This glossy magazine is published 11 times in a calendar year and is available from major newsagents at $7.00 per issue or by subscription direct from the publishers. Australia AUD$67; New Zealand AUD$102; South-East Asia AUD$104; Europe and Americas AUD$130.

It contains the most up-to-date numismatic information, plus dealers Buy and Sell market values. Whilst it is not a catalogue in itself, it can prove to be an extremely handy tool to supplement any of the annual publications mentioned - or any other specialised books currently available from dealers. Many great articles from national and international numismatists.make this publication a 'must' for all collectors.



Reserve Bank of New Zealand website promotes

 "Change for the better"

'Change for the better' is the message on the new Reserve Bank of New Zealand website.

© Reserve Bank of New Zealand

The RBNZ website (www.newcoins.govt.nz) is dedicated to explaining the forthcoming changes to New Zealand's silver-coloured coins.

On 31 July 2006 the current 50, 20, and 10 cent coins will be replaced with smaller and lighter coins, and the 5 cent coin will begin to be phased out.

The coins will retain the same designs but the 10 cent coin will be copper-coloured. The $1 and $2 coins will not change.

Mr. Brian Lang, Reserve Bank Currency Manager, says the new website contains comprehensive information about the coin changes, provides answers to commonly-asked questions, and enables resources to be downloaded.

"As the website says, our smaller, lighter coins really will be a `change for the better' - they will take up less room and be easier to handle.

However, individuals and businesses may have a number of questions about the changes.

The website acts as a one-stop-shop for anyone wanting further information."

There will be a transition period of three months, from 31 July 2006 to 31 October 2006.

During this period the existing and the new coins can be used.

From 1 November 2006 the current 50, 20 and 10 cent coins, including the 5 cent coin will no longer be legal tender, which means that retailers do not have to accept them for payment of goods. The Reserve Bank will always redeem the existing coins.

As 31 July draws closer, the Reserve Bank is encouraging people to locate any 5, 10, 20 or 50 cent coins that they may have stored away and take them to their bank.

"By locating these coins now and taking them to your bank, you'll be beating the rush, and saving yourself a job later in the year", Brian Lang said.

For further information contact
Anthea Black
External Communications Adviser
New Zealand Contact Ph:  +  04 471 3767,  + 021 222 5225

Email: anthea.black@rbnz.govt.nz



Whilst it is impossible to publish details of all municipal trade token issues from Canada, or anywhere else, every so often there is one that  catches the attention of the public and deserves a brief mention.

Lions Club volunteers from all over the world do an enormous amount of hard work in providing services to their communities and this involvement by Mahone Bay Area Lions in Nova Scotia is one imaginative way they try to participate with other local interest groups to achieve a positive result.


Picturesque Nova Scotia town issues scarecrow token

Newsheet supplied by Serge Pelletier.

The Mahone Bay Area Lions Club has issued a 5-Dollar municipal trade token, which has been dubbed “Mahoonie” by Halifax Herald Chronicle, to commemorate the town’s 10th annual Scarecrow Festival.  The token has currency value, at participating merchants within the town, until October 31st, 2006. The obverse shows: (maple leaf) SCARECROW FESTIVAL (maple leaf) / (two scarecrows with some pumpkins) / 5 DOLLARS / EXPIRES 06/10/31 / 1996-2006 while the reverse shows: (maple leaf) MAHONE BAY (maple leaf) / 1754 / (the three churches) / (Lions logo) / MAHONE BAY AREA LIONS / NOVA SCOTIA CANADA

The 33 millimetre token was struck in the following metals: 5,000 on nickel-plated blanks (C$7.50), 250 on antique copper blanks (C$15.00), 250 on antique nickel-silver blanks (C$15.00) and 250 on gold-plated blanks (C$18.00). 

In addition, 75 enamelled copper (C$35.00) and 50 enamelled gold-plated pieces (C$45.00) were produced. The middle pumpkin and a colour swatch on the palette were coloured orange on these pieces. 

Eligi Consultants Inc. had the token struck from designs by Ron Hall and Carole Whitcombe.

All are available from the exclusive distributor,


Box 11447, Station H, Nepean,


tel: +1-613-823-3844, fax: +1-613-825-3092

Email: bonavita@eligi.ca  

Order direct  at the prices indicated in parentheses.  S&H are extra. Canadian resident must add the applicable taxes.

International orders or enquiries, please contact Bonavita for full details.



Nickel-plated 33mm basic Mahone Bay 'Scarecrow Festival' tokens


Background information

The Great ScareCrow Festival & Antique Fair is celebrating its 10th Anniversary. A large group of enthusiastic volunteers, dubbed the “ScareCrew”, spend weeks preparing hundreds of enchanting scarecrows, many in vignettes, for everyone to see and enjoy. Highlights of the festival include hundreds of brilliant orange pumpkins on the roof of Jo-Ann’s Market, one of the town’s favourite eateries. Each October, Jo-Ann puts her creativity to work and, for two nights, adorns a dark lane beside the three churches with the most amazing jack-o’lanterns, many with traditional, nautical and off-the-wall.

The “three churches” depicted on the reverse are a well recognized landmark that have inspired a safe haven for sailors for more than a century.  St. James’ Anglican Church, on the left, is the newest.  The Episcopal congregation of Mahone Bay first worshipped in a hilltop church from 1833 to 1887.  In 1888, the present church was designed by famous Canadian architect William Critchlow Harris, in a High Victorian Revival style.  The interior ceiling was designed to look like the hull of a boat.  The steeple reaches some 30 metres and was used as a reference point by seamen. St. John’s Lutheran Church, in the middle, is the oldest on site, built in 1869.  Rebuilt in 1903, it is one of the best known Lutheran churches in Nova Scotia for its beautifully appointed chancel.

The Trinity United Church, on the right, was originally built in 1861 on a hill above Mahone Bay and was moved to the shoreline in 1885.  Records show that the transportation, with spire ad everything as it stood, took ten days and cost $800.  Heavy timber with two runners were placed under the building and attached with chain and double block and tackle to two horses which pulled it the 400-metre distance.  Lightning struck the steeple in the 1900s which forced its removal.

Situated well inland from the fogs of the Grand Banks, Mahone Bay is at the head of the bay of the same name, an hour’s drive southeast of Halifax and fifteen minutes from world famous Lunenburg.

For more information email Serge Pelletier at:  serge@eligi.ca




PART 3 of the Series


The Kroner of Denmark, Norway and Sweden


Most collectors are, or were, very familiar with the coinages and currency of the Mediterranean area and the Central Western European countries prior to the introduction of the Euro a few years ago. The most familiar, and therefore the most popular from a collector's point of view, would have had to be the Spanish Peseta, the Escudo of Portugal, the Francs of Swizerland, France and Belgium, the Lira of Italy, the Schilling of Austria, the German Mark as well as the Dutch Guilder. The inflated currencies of the former Eastern Bloc countries were not as well known - or as easily obtainable - due to the restrictive controls placed on their financial markets and the fact that some circulating coinages were produced in base metals that were not  popular in numismatists circles

Further north, the Scandinavian countries also had lacked popularity amongst world coin collectors to some extent.because of the stability of their financial markets. The result of these years of stability, after WWII, had seen many of the coinage and currency designs become somewhat lack-lustre compared to the southern European issues - but there were exceptions!

This story will be concluded in our next issue...........






The ‘Tasmanian Numismatist’ newsletter is the only official newsletter of the ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society’ and it is published periodically and distributed by post, or hand delivered, directly to members of the Tasmanian Numismatic Society and selected associates and institutions.

The ‘Tasmanian Numismatist’ (Internet Edition) newsletter is a separate entity and has been provided with space on this privately maintained Internet site and is currently presented free on a monthly basis  with the aim of promoting the hobby of numismatics. All matters pertaining to the T.N.S. are re-published with the permission of the current Executive Committee of the  ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society. The 'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition) newsletter abides by the same basic guidelines suggested for the official 'Tasmanian Numismatist' newsletter. Any literary contributions or relevant and constructive comments regarding numismatics are always welcome.

Please note that all opinions expressed in material published in the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition) newsletter are those of the authors, and not necessarily those of the ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society or the Editor. 



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Under this act, information about individuals can be stored and published only if: the information is already contained in a publicly available document or if personal information has been provided by the individual to whom the information relates, and if that individual is aware of the purposes for which the information is being collected.

All information published by the'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition) newsletter is either publicly available, or has been voluntarily provided by writers, or members of the 'Tasmanian Numismatic Society', on request from the Editor of the 'Tasmanian Numismatist'  (Internet Edition) newsletter.

While the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition) newsletter may hold writers' addresses and other details for the purposes of communication and copyright protection, it will never make such addresses or details available to any member of the public without the permission of those involved.

The 'Tasmanian Numismatist '(Internet Edition) newsletter also respects the privacy of our readers. When you write to us with comments, queries or suggestions, you may provide us with personal information including your contact address or other relevant information. Your personal information will never be made available to a third party without permission.



All details of a commercial nature, organisations, items or individual arrangement to buy, sell or trade are provided in good faith as information only, and any consequent dealings are between the parties concerned. 

The ‘Tasmanian Numismatist’ (Internet Edition) newsletter takes no responsibility for disagreements between parties, and also reserves the right to only feature information that it considers suitable in promoting the hobby to our readers. Deadline for any literary contributions or amendment to copy is 7 Days prior to the beginning of the month of publication.

The contents of this Internet newsletter, and all prior issues, are copyrighted ©, but anything herein can be fairly used to promote the great hobby of numismatics; however, we do like to be asked by commercial interests if they wish to use any of our copy. 

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The Editor,

'Tasmanian Numismatist' (Internet Edition). 

P.O. Box 10,

Ravenswood. 7250. Tasmania.


Internet Page: http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/tns.html

Email: pwood@vision.net.au