Volume 20 Issue 11   Formerly published as the 'Tasmanian Numismatist' - Internet Edition' (Est. 1996)    November 2015



Edited by Graeme Petterwood. © 2015.


The contents of this independent Internet newsletter, and all prior issues - included the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition' - 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. This permission, however, does not extend to any article specifically marked as copyrighted © by the author of the article.

Explicit permission from the author, or the Editor of the  NumisNet World' '(Internet Edition) newsletter, is required - in writing - prior to use of that material.


All or any previous prices quoted in articles in this free 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. Wherever possible - illustrations (*enlarged or otherwise) are from the newsletter's library collection - or that of the extensive library of the former 'Tasmanian Numismatist' -  Internet Edition © 1991 - 2007.

Krause-Mishler (KM) Standard and Specialized World Catalogs (also including 'Pick' banknote numbers) - and McDonald and/or Renniks Australian catalogue numbers - are used where applicable.

*Please note that the photoscans of items are not always to size or scale. (Fair 'acknowledged' use of any original scan is allowed for educational purposes.)



Where on-line web-site Links or addresses are supplied, they are done so in good faith - however, our readers are advised, that, if a personal decision to access them is made - it is at your own risk.


'NOUMEA' ... and a few other exotic places!




"They seek him here - they seek him there - those Frenchies seek him everywhere - is he in Heaven - is he in Hell - that damned elusive Pimpernel!"

(Baroness Emmuska 'Emma' Orcszy 1865 - 1947)


The French presence has been felt over the world - before, during and after the infamous head-chopping 1700's era - it makes one ponder whether the 'Scarlet Pimpernel' character of fictional literature would have ever desired to get away to the more exotic places if the need arose, or, if he ever wanted a holiday break - incognito!! 

When he was being pursued by his nemesis, agent Chauvelin - even in England - did he dream of walking away from that exciting swash-buckling action while regularly hopping of the English Channel to thwart 'Madame Guillotine' even as the carts bearing the intended victims trundled into the Place de la Revolution (Place de la Concorde) in Paris?  Did he ever yearn for an intimate dally in a tropical paradise?

However, even the dilettante, Sir Percy Blakeney, would have needed more than a little local Cash in his wallet!

Whatever!  - perhaps, the scenario would make it ripe for another great modern adventure!


On a more realistic note - the 'Pimpernel' would most probably need to be educated, inoculated - and have access to a fair bit of serious folding money if he decided to dally during a modern Pacific vacation aboard one of the luxury liners that now ply the South Seas!

It may seem rather mundane when we now consider what made the real world go round in some of those far-flung French colonial outposts! 

In the early 1800's it was very hard work - with a little brutality thrown in - to get some things moving in Polynesia .

OK!... let's look at a little piece of it, but, from not quite as ancient an era as Baroness Orcszy's famous hero!! 


Tucked away at the Southern tip of New Caledonia is the French-speaking city known as Noumea.

Noumea is the capital of New Caledonia, and it has had a chequered history as the deep-water port for the region.

Hands up - if you can put a finger on this out-of-the-way French colonial place - it's hard to find on the map unless you know where to look - and, do you know anything about its more recent numismatic history? Refer to Wikipedia for more details!


The splashes - and miniscule dots - of Green, indicate the scope of the French Colonial Empire.


France, like its rivals - Spain, Portugal, Netherlands and Great Britain, had so many colonies scattered about the Pacific region that it was more convenient to 'commercially' produce several series of basic colonial banknotes under the "Banque de l' Indochine" name and then have these basic designs overprinted with the names of the local areas that they were to be designated to - such as Noumea, Papeete etc.

Similar notes were produced, by the various authorised printers, under this bank's banner and they were also used in Djibouti on the Somali Coast on the 'horn' of Africa, in French India - at places like Pondichery - and, at a few other places in Africa not catered for by the other main issuers, the 'Banque d' Afrique Occidentale'  or the 'Tresor Coloniale' - and the local authorised issuing banks.

Some of these 'generic' style notes - over-printed or otherwise - circulated in areas across Indo-China, New Caledonia, Tahiti and the New Hebrides prior to the Pacific phase of the Second World War.

(*Details of other known O/P notes - not shown - are listed below the illustrations*)


During WWII, some local printing was done to maintain the economy due to the capitulation of France to Germany at that time, the rise of Vichy France, and the entry of Japan into the Pacific War. Some notes from this region were also printed in Australia..

This small selection is from my own collection - and, they are obviously well circulated!


N.D. (1926) Banque de l'Indochine - 20 Francs - Over-printed for Noumea (KM - Pick# 26b)

*New Hebrides O/P on Banque de l' Indochine 20 Francs note (KM - Pick# 8b)*

*Papeete (Tahiti) O/P on Banque de l' Indochine 20 Francs note  (KM - Pick#15b)*


New Caledonia - Treasury of Noumea - Bon de Caisse  - 50 Centimes (KM - Pick# 38)

This war-time series of small-change notes was printed during 1942 - 3 with various signatories.

These dated notes were issued 15th.July 1942 - 29th. March 1943*(shown) - 30th. April 1943 and 15th. June 1943 - some were on watermarked paper.


1944 Banque de l' Indochine - 5 Francs - Over-printed for Noumea (KM - Pick# 23).

*New Hebrides O/P on Banque de l' Indochine 5 Francs note (KM - Pick# 4a)*

*Papeete (Tahiti) O/P on Banque de l' Indochine 5 Francs note (KM - Pick$12)*


1969 Institut d' Emission d' Outre-Mer - 100 Francs

O/P Noumea (KM - Pick#44a Copper plate-print  & KM - Pick# 44 b - offset print)

O/P Papeete (KM - Pick# 24a Copper plate-print  & KM - Pick# 24b - offset print)


Many colonial outposts were catered for by Le Banque Centrale d' France and L'Insitut de l'Emissions des Departments d'Outre-Mer - which catered for major areas - prior to their independence and entry into the new French Community group. .

Several notes within these series could also be classified as being in the 'generic-style'.


As a specialised group within a world collection - these French colonial notes are a great choice to work on!

The notes are readily available as a rule, and, they are normally priced at the attainable level for beginners.

They are still challenging enough, numismatically, for the more experienced gatherer to get a lot of pleasure when a quantity of designs has been amassed.  History and geography abound!


Main Reference:-

'Standard Catalog of World Paper Money' - General Issues (5th Edition Volume 2) - by Albert Pick ...(Krause Publication)




Every numismatist worth his/her salt will know that under our tough hide of professionalism beats the heart of a dedicated hunter-gatherer! We don't just stop at coins, banknotes, medallions - and the more acceptable items of exonumia - as we fossick and prospect through our hobby-life! 

Like those much-maligned 'magpies' of the collector-world -  we, too, are occasionally attracted by the magnetic glitter of -  'whatever-it-is...it looks-good'  - dross at the bottom of the market junk-boxes - or we decided to -  'take-the-lot-if-the-price-is-right!..... and, we would have no soul if we ever knocked back a gift from another hobbyist with slightly different interests.

As I already have an interest in Militaria - it was easy to accept these items when they were offered after a friend's recent 'excess to requirement' clean-out!


A selection of Military Buttons and insignia - plus a few Sporting club lapel badges.



One tiny item I almost missed - because it was, initially, upside-down in the heap and mistaken for a loose locking stud - was the AAU - USA badge. The Amateur Athletics Union badge is presented in a pin style for piercing a jacket lapel - it is complete with its backing stud that is almost bigger than the 1.0cm x 1.3 cm enamelled brass front. It was probably a 'swapped' memento from the 1950's.

The modern Australian stylized Lyre-bird 10c coin - which has a diameter of 2.36cm. - is only to show the size comparison.




From time to time, interesting websites offer a gem of information that benefits this Joe Average in his search for applied numismatic knowledge. I have just found such a tit-bit about some of the Alloys used in coins, medallions etc. - and would share it with you, my reader!


I have recently been browsing through my 1991 copy of Roger V. McNeice's catalogue, entitled "Tasmanian Commemorative Medals and Medallions 1853 - 1990" (Volume 2) looking for a little information about two items of interest to me..

The Medallion that I was researching had been made by Stokes, Melbourne to commemorate the Centenary of the Royal Hobart Regatta in 1938.  Reference McN #31.1  The two medallion samples I have (shown below) are 'as obtained' - their purposes is self-proclaimed.


One of these pieces of metal, I have had for many years - a part of the family 'treasures' that eventually found their way to this 'magpie' gatherer. 

It is an item with little real appeal - it had been poorly treated, roughly stored in a kitchen junk drawer -  and it had become very grimy indeed over time.

The normal Ribbon lug had been removed and the base had been tidied up, it seems that this all happened some time ago judging from the toning.

Its origin, and how it came to be in the old cabinet drawer with other bits 'n' pieces that had I played with about 70 years ago - is lost to history!

It was also being neglected by this gatherer until a similar piece turned up unexpectedly in a small group of exonumia that I acquired recently.

The decision to clean it up a little, to check it more thoroughly, then became irresistible ....!

However, I was so motivated by curiosity, that I did the unthinkable - and made a small edge scraping to remove some of the built-up grime.


I noticed, in Roger's book, that the metallic term Tombac was applied to one small-sized version of this popular medallion that was of renewed interest to me.

This dilapidated lump was still somewhat mysterious - at first scratch it had appeared to be Bronze - however, it may be made of the alloy Tombac* as mentioned in the handbook. I had no positive idea what Tombac was - although it was fairly obvious it was probably a Brass alloy of Copper-Zinc that was outside of the normal range that I was familiar with. The quick Internet search and the site (below) was found and the explanation, I believe, is forthcoming!




The medallion may fit the metallic parameters - as Tombac* is not totally definable beyond the fact it is a Brass alloy of sorts - and that alloy can be a blend of Copper, over 70% and as high as 88%., with the balance made up of  Zinc..

The various blends create colour differences that make it suitable for a variety of applications including coins, medallions and cheap jewellery manufacture

The planchet does appear to be more like Bronze - however it has a thin surface silvering applied - silver traces are also apparent on the rim and field -so it is in need of further careful investigation. No mention was made in the handbook of a Silvered Bronze issue, .and, as mentioned, the missing ribbon Lug appears to have been removed some time ago - or was it ever there? A lug-less version is also mentioned in "Tasmanian Commemorative Medals and Medallions 1853 - 1990" (Volume 2)


The other medallion, a more recent acquisition, is an attractive item and a lot cleaner and easier to attribute!.

It is be-ribboned and it is made of Oxidized Silver - however, the original red/white ribbons are extremely dirty - and they may not stand the rigors of washing.

I would need to be very gentle if I decide to treat them to rid them of what appears to be light machine-oil... however, they may be past redemption and replacement may be the only alternative ... if I wish to pretty them up!



The obverse bears likenesses of Sir John Franklin and the earlier explorer, Abel Janzoon Tasman -  the reverse incorporates a pattern-style, from Stokes, that they used again for the island state of Tasmania - with a variation -  for the Royal Visit of 1953/4




or ....

 'Check that old loose change that lurks in the back of Grannie's kitchen cupboard!'


'A Pocket Guide to Australian Coins and Banknotes'

(22nd. Edition)

by Greg McDonald 2015


This relatively short (revisited) list of basic Australian pre-decimal coinage represents the 'gold amongst the dross,' and, the items it mentions are still being found in the most unlikely of places ....!

Well - the individual coins may not quite be gold - but - some (but not all) of these pieces are worth far more as a numismatic scarcity than their weight of that precious yellow stuff. The illustrated coins* are from my own collection and were graded conservatively - however, the prices quoted in italics below the pics. - are based on 'Very Fine' (or the sample condition stipulated ) - which is a desirable bottom marker for collectors to strive for..  The current Australian Dollar is worth about 72 U.S. Cents.


Bronze Half-Penny - (1/2d.)

Weight: 5.67grams - Size: 25.5mm.  

1915 H;  1916 I (Mule);  1923* (Very Fine - $3,500.00) ;  1924

AUD$225,00;  $65.00;  $3,500,.00;  $30.00

(The Muled coin was minted in India and has the Obverse (Head) of an Indian Quarter Anna (George V King Emperor) coin and an Aust. Half-penny Reverse.)



Bronze Penny - (1d.)

Weight: 9.45grams - Size: 30.8mm.    

1919 .//. ; 1920;  1920 .// ;  1920 .//. ; 1925;  1930;  1933/32;  1946* (about Very Fine - $80.00)

AUD$350.00;  $450.00;  $12.50;  $475.00;  $225.00;  $42,000.00;  $85.00;  $80.00

The lines represent the two horizontal scrolls on the KGV Bronze coin Reverses located above and below the denomination - and the tiny dots that may be centred above and/or below the scrolls are actually mintmarks, e.g:  Dot below = Melbourne;  Dot above = Sydney.

If no Dots are present, it means coins were minted at all three Australian mints - including Perth. Other Dots are present on KGV coins, but, as these are nor relevant to this article they are not mentioned. (Refer a good catalogue for mintages etc.).


Sterling Silver .925 Fine Threepence - (3d.)

Weight: 1.41grams - Size: 16mm.  

1914;  1915;  1922/1 (Overdate);  1923* (Very Fine - $150.00);  1934/3 (Overdate)

AUD$100.00;  $200.00;  $20,000.00;  $150.00;  $225.00


Sterling Silver .925 Fine Sixpence - (6d.)

Weight: 2.83grams - Size: 19mm.

1912;  1916 M;  1923;  1924* (about Fine - $25);  1918 M

AUD$170.00;  $160.00;  $75.00;  $150.00;  $340.00

(From 1910 - 1915 these coins were minted in England.)

(Some of these Silver coins bear no initial (Sydney) but others have the initial M (Melbourne) under the date.)


Sterling Silver .925 Fine One Shilling - (1/-)

Weight: 5.65grams - Size: 23.5mm.  

1912;  1913;  1915;  1915 H;  1921;  1924;  1925*(type illustration only) (Very Fine - $40.00);  1933

AUD$185.00;  $390.00;  $470.00;  $295.00;  $275.00;  $40.00;  $425.00

(Some of these Silver coins bear the initial of the issuing Mint - e.g. M (Melbourne) or H (Heaton England).


Sterling Silver .925 Fine Florin - Two Shillings (2/-)

Weight: 11.31grams - Size: 28.5mm.    

1910;  1911;  1912;  1913;  1914 H;  1915;  1915 H;  1918 M;  1919 M;  1921;  1922* (Very Good - $25.00);  1932;  1933

AUD$$265.00;  $275.00;  $300.00;  $300.00;  $500.00;  $290.00;  $95.00;  $265.00;  $250.00;  $825.00;  $325.00;

AUD$825.00;  $325.00

(Some of these Silver coins bear the initial of the issuing Mint - e.g. M (Melbourne)

or H (Heaton England).


Sterling Silver .925 Fine Commemorative Florin -

Two Shillings (2/-)  Weight: 11.31grams - Size: 28.5mm.  

1934-35* (Extra Fine - $525.00)




Sterling Silver .925 Fine Crown - 5 Shillings (5/-)

Weight: 28.27grams - Size: 38.5mm.  

1937* (Extra Fine - $45.00); 1938* (Extra fine - $185.00)

AUD$25.00;  $100.00


Shrewd buyers should now aim for coins that grade from Very Fine and better condition - lower grades are acceptable if that is all that is available for Joe Average and beginners, but, the market trend is moving upwards due to pressure applied by professional grading agencies and an insistent investor/buyer demand for better quality merchandise.


The prices quoted in this article are from market prices recently published by established cataloguer, Greg McDonald..

There has been a heavy - and obvious - downward price trend in the last 6 - 8 months - it has been most noticeable in the lower end of the 'condition' range -  however, that appears to have now consolidated somewhat after consideration of prices from more frequent sources.



'Australian Coins and Banknotes' - by Greg McDonald. (22nd. Edition 2015)




JULY 2007 - JANUARY 2015....

Full details of 'Numisnet World' - incorporating 'Tasmanian Numismatist'  (2007)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec07.htm   -  (Volume 12 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2008)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec08.htm   -  (Volume 13 - Issues 1 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2009)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec09.htm   -  (Volume 14 - Issues 1 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2010)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec10.htm   -  (Volume 15 - Issues 1 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2011)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/jun11.htm   -  (Volume 16 - Issues 1 - 6)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec11.htm   -  (Volume 16 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2012)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/june12.htm -  (Volume 17 - Issues 1 - 6)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec12.htm  -   (Volume 17 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2013)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/june13.htm  -  (Volume 18 - Issues 1 - 6)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec13.htm   -  (Volume 18 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2014)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/june14.htm  - (Volume 19 - Issues 1 - 6)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/dec14.htm  -   (Volume 19 - Issues 7 - 12)

For full details of 'Numisnet World' (2015)

http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/june15.htm -   (Volume 20 - Issues 1-6)


VOLUME 20 - 2015


Issue 7. July 2015:- http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/july15.htm

WHAT WAS LOST - IS FOUND (Part2) - Modern Inflation Money. I have only cited a couple of examples - but there are scores of course!

THE LITTLE GUYS COUNT AS WELL! - During the last 2 decades or so - a change has swept over global financial institutions, and, our day-to-day cash money - the physical stuff that we have taken for granted for a lifetime - has started to alter as well.  It has been a sudden change, but, it has encompassed a period of transition in some instances. For older members of our numismatic fraternity - it harks back to days between the two World Wars when emergency money became a fact-of-life! 


Issue 8. August 2015:- http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/aug15.htm

IN MEMORIAM - It is now 10 years since my beloved wife and TNS stalwart, Ailsa Petterwood, passed from our company - and she is sorely missed!

BIG COINS, BIGGER MEDALLIONS, a few BITS and BUTTON BOXES - Storage is always a problem for beginners - so here are a few thoughts!


Issue 9 September 2015:- http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/sep15.htm

DISAPPEARING CURRENCIES - THE GLORY THAT WAS EUROPE:- Since the creation of the European Economic Union and the introduction of Euro Currency at the turn of the century, the former money of the nations involved has disappeared through official withdrawal, and, also by the demands of those newcomers with numismatic interests who have arrived on the scene with an appetite for the past.

This brief pictorial essay, along with some old comments from the early 2000's, is just a misty window into the fabulous paper money art gallery of that era.

COIN GRADING ... and other stuff:- A link back to the 'Tasmanian Numismatist'  - Sept 2006.


Issue 10. October 2015:- http://www.vision.net.au/~pwood/oct15.htm

THE TRIALS of a PRODUCER - Test pieces are an essential part of any manufacturing industry including that of medallion and token-making.

MORE THAN A BIT of TRIVIA. - Some essential statistics about Australian Coins and Banknotes!

FARE THEE WELL! - This notification is giving our local 'Tasmanian Numismatist' readers some advance notice that my extended term as temporary editorial correspondent for the Tasmanian Numismatic Society newsletter is now nearing its end. The last 20 years has been phenomenal - hard work - yes! at times ...but it was purposeful and it was certainly rewarding!


Issue 11. November 2015:-

NOUMEA ..and OTHER EXOTIC PLACES! - The historic use of the French Franc in the Pacific and Indian Ocean regions is well known. The idea of using a few special banknotes was inevitable - it kept colonial money separate from the homeland issues - so, the era of 'generic' banknotes took root - just a small 'tweek ' here and there - and a logistical problem was on the way to being solved! A worthy collecting theme!

ON OUR TRAVELS! - Most numismatists can be as inquisitive as the next collector-gatherer! However - 'Never knock back anything!' - should be a great mantra even for the most dedicated professional members of our fraternity!  Living a little rough, as we glean - often teaches us more about our own hobby.

OFF THE WEB - A tit-bit of Internet knowledge about the stuff we make our coins and medallions from!

GOLD AMONG THE DROSS!  A revisit to a few select Australian pre-decimal coins and a price update. Prices based on demand do not always go up!





The contents of this independent Internet newsletter, and all prior issues - included the 'Tasmanian Numismatist - Internet Edition' - 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. This permission, however, does not extend to any article specifically marked as copyrighted © by the author of the article.

Explicit permission from the author, or the Editor of the  NumisNet World' '(Internet Edition) newsletter, is required - in writing - prior to use of that material.


The 'NumisNet World'’ (Internet Edition) newsletter 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. Whilst the 'NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter abides by the same basic guidelines originally suggested for the official 'Tasmanian Numismatist' newsletter, it is a separate, independent publication.

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

All titles and matters pertaining to the T.N.S. are re-published with the permission of the current Executive Committee of the ‘Tasmanian Numismatic Society


Any literary contributions or relevant and constructive comments regarding numismatics are always welcome.

Please note that all opinions expressed in material published in the ''NumisNet World'' (Internet Edition) newsletter are those of the authors, and not necessarily those of the Editor. 

ALL comments in linked articles are the responsibility of the original authors.

Bearing in mind our public disclaimers, any 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 -  or  - (2) To provide additional important information. 


Some illustrated items - including their designs and packaging -  may be subject to existing copyright restrictions.

In such instances, they may not be replicated or their images reproduced or republished - unless prior permission is sought from, and given by, the originator, owner or licensee of such item, design or packaging.



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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 'NumisNet World' (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 Editor,

Numisnet World - (Internet Edition). 

P.O. Box 10,

Ravenswood. 7250. Tasmania.


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

Email: pwood@vision.net.au