(Numismatic Studies 20, 1992)
by Philip L. Mossman
Hardcover, 312 pp.
Read/Download via HathiTrust (Open Access).
Chapter One: The Economic Relationship Between England and her North American
Chapter Two: Money in Early America: Wampum, Commodities, Foreign Coins
Chapter Three: Massachusetts and Maryland Silver Coinage
Chapter Four: Colonial Paper Currency
Chapter Five: The Emergence of Copper Coinage
Chapter Six: The New Constellation
Chapter Seven: Coinage of the Confederation Period
Chapter Eight: The Coppers Panic of 1789
Chapter Nine: Toward a More Perfect Union
Appendix 1: Conversion into Various Monies of Account
Appendix 2: Summary of Overstruck Coppers
Appendix 3: Assay Calculations
Appendix 4: Weight Distribution Analyses of Confederation Coppers
Appendix 5: “A Treatise on Copper Coins”
by Christopher J. Salmon (2010)
Hardcover, full color
Price: US$24.98 plus shipping and handling (no Member discount)
The silver coins of Massachusetts hold a special place in early American numismatics. They were the first coins struck in British North America, a mere generation after the establishment of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Because of their historical importance and charming style, they have prompted rich inquiry among scholars and an intense interest and desire among collectors.
The Silver Coins of Massachusetts is a splendidly illustrated review of these coins, employing the latest historical and numismatic evidence as well as novel scientific analysis. Minting technique is explored in detail. All varieties of the coinage are newly classified with a consistent yet flexible taxonomic system that lists the varieties in chronological order and can readily accommodate potential future discoveries. The system allows an appreciation for how varieties evolved and the relative degree of change that occurred at each step. It is designed to be as simple as possible without oversimplifying, with all varieties named according to their obverse and reverse dies. The book includes a fully illustrated atlas that details important characteristic features. The last part of the atlas displays each variety at actual size to aid in attribution.
Part One: Classification
A Revised Taxonomy of the Massachusetts Silver Coinage with Concordance to Noe and Crosby
Advantages of the Original Crosby Classification
Intermediate Types with Interpolative Designations: Problems with the Noe Classification
Advantages of the New System: The Crosby Model
Subseries Numbered Separately
Chronology and Method of Attribution
New England and Willow Tree Series
Oak Tree Series
The Spiny Tree Coins and the Evidence of the Overstrikes
The Large Planchet Pine Tree Shillings
The Small Planchet Pine Tree Shillings
The Pine Tree Sixpence Varieties
Counterfeits and Questionable Varieties
Die Links of the Small Planchet Pine Tree Shillings
Part Two: Minting Technique
The Problem of the Willow Tree Coins
Comparison of Minting Techniques of the Massachusetts Silver Coinage: Hand Hammering and the Rocker Press
Rocker Press Phenomena
Acquired Damage from Flattening
The Inner Circle Index: A Measure of Distortion and Evidence of Rocker Press Manufacture
Inner Circle Indices for Willow, Oak and Pine Tree Shillings
Characteristics of the Willow Tree Coinage: Weak and Discordant Multiple Strikes
A Graphical Method of Determining Strike Multiplicity and Die Rotation and Translation Between Strikes
New Composite Reconstructions of the Willow Tree Shilling Dies
Apparent Die Axis of the Willow Tree Coinage
Multiple Strikes of Similar Energy: The Effects of Die Angulation
A Physical Explanation for the Weak Strikes of the Willow Tree Coinage
The Acquisition of a Coining Press
Fabric of the Willow Tree Coinage
Quality of Execution of the Willow Tree Coinage Dies: Mannerist Style
Part Three: Atlas
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(Numismatic Studies 27, 2012)
by Philip L. Mossman
Hardcover: 304 pp.
Price: $49.98 (no Member discount)
Limited number of signed copies: see below
Ever since coinage was developed in ancient Lydia, an element of society has sought to debase the coin of the realm for personal gain not only by counterfeiting, but also by shaving away precious metal. Currency debasement was not confined to the proletariat since throughout history various monarchs increased their royal revenues, or seigniorage, by reducing the quality of the coins’ specie content or its weight standard. The current text follows closely the course of royal English copper coinages whose high potential profit made them an ideal prey for counterfeiters. These forgeries flowed freely into the colonies where they overwhelmed, and eventually collapsed, the small change medium but not before various states sought to correct the evil of this imported copper trash.
Great attention is paid to Great Britain’s mercantilistic policies which shaped the character of the currency in the North American colonies where chronic hard money shortages encouraged counterfeit coinages of all stripes whose actual manufacture and circulation is examined in great detail. Colonists further sought to expand their monetary pool by printing bills of credit to meet the exigencies of the French and Indian Wars. This new paper currency likewise became the target for forgery and a battle royal ensued between the colonial treasurers and bands of counterfeiters as they competed to outsmart each other. But as “the weed of crime bears bitter fruit,” many counterfeiters were apprehended and punished for their evil deeds.
Chapter One: The Landscape of Counterfeit Money
Chapter Two: Pre-1700 Counterfeiting
Chapter Three: Who’s Who in Counterfeiting
Chapter Four: “Counterfeiting 101”
Chapter Five: English Copper Coinages
Chapter Six: State Coppers to the Rescue
Chapter Seven: Genuine Paper Money
Chapter Eight: Altered Paper Money
Chapter Nine: Counterfeit Paper Money
Chapter Ten: Laws and Penalties
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