Rare Royal

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We offer Rare Royal shoppers a unique range of products from on all over the world. Unlike your traditional retailer, Antiques Valuations is an online auction website with most listings offering a unparalleled characteristic called "Buy It Now" option.

ROYAL DOULTON AUTUMN BREEZES  HN 1934 RETIRED RARE TWO FOOTED FIGURINE
royal doulton autumn breezes hn 1934 retired rare two footed figurine
$49.99
quality
ROYAL CROWN DERBY NATIONAL DOG PEKINESE RARE 1ST QUALITY
royal crown derby national dog pekinese rare 1st quality
$125.00
quality
1932 Rare Royal Doulton Figurines JANET IN RED HN 1537 Retired 1949 Signed SS
1932 rare royal doulton figurines janet in red hn 1537 retired 1949 signed ss
$79.99
quality
RARE ROYAL COPENHAGEN DECORATIVE B W PLATE 1874 1899 COELES TEM ADSPICIT LVCEM
rare royal copenhagen decorative b w plate 1874 1899 coeles tem adspicit lvcem
$999.99
quality
2 Rare Vtg Royal Crown Coffee Mugs Kings  Queen by Ellena 2663 signed numbered
2 rare vtg royal crown coffee mugs kings queen by ellena 2663 signed numbered
$63.98
quality
ROYAL COPENHAGEN CHRISTMAS PLATE 1995 CHRISTMAS AT THE MANOR HOUSE RARE
royal copenhagen christmas plate 1995 christmas at the manor house rare
$44.99
quality
ANTIQUE ROYAL ALBERT CROWN CHINA 743059 7 INCH PLATE FROM ENGLAND RARE TO FIND
antique royal albert crown china 743059 7 inch plate from england rare to find
$19.95
quality
Extremely Rare Variation Royal Doulton Lydia Figurine HN 1907 Green Dress 1939
extremely rare variation royal doulton lydia figurine hn 1907 green dress 1939
$224.95
quality
Rare Large Royal Doulton Prestige Collection Lion on Rock Figurine HN2641 signed
rare large royal doulton prestige collection lion on rock figurine hn2641 signed
$399.99
quality
Rare ROYAL DOULTON touchdown BUNNYKINS Football Figurine Beatrix Potter SIGNED
rare royal doulton touchdown bunnykins football figurine beatrix potter signed
$32.28
quality
PIXIE DUNCAN ROYALE HISTORY OF SANTA CLAUS PEWTER COLLECTION NOS 500 RARE
pixie duncan royale history of santa claus pewter collection nos 500 rare
$59.98
quality
ROYAL DOULTON THE MAYOR HN2280 MINT MAGNIFICENT FIGURINE REG475 RARE
royal doulton the mayor hn2280 mint magnificent figurine reg475 rare
$208.05
quality
RARE LEFTON CLASSIC CINEMAS ROYALE GONE WITH THE WIND 1995 MUSIC BOX TURNER
rare lefton classic cinemas royale gone with the wind 1995 music box turner
$19.99
quality
VTG Royal Copenhagen The Snowman 1985 In Box Collectible Christmas Rare
vtg royal copenhagen the snowman 1985 in box collectible christmas rare
$79.99
quality
Radko 1999 ROYAL RUSSIAN HOLIDAY RARE 2 Sided Egg Shaped Carriage NEW w Tag
radko 1999 royal russian holiday rare 2 sided egg shaped carriage new w tag
$85.00
quality
 Very Rare Royal Doulton DEVIL MEPHISTOPHELES w VERSE Character Jug NICE
very rare royal doulton devil mephistopheles w verse character jug nice
$588.88
quality
Radko 1999 ERMINE NICHOLAS Royal Heraldry RARE Medieval Cloaked Santa NEWw Tag
radko 1999 ermine nicholas royal heraldry rare medieval cloaked santa neww tag
$195.00
quality
Vintage 1936 Royal Douton England Bunnykins Porcelaiin Round Bank 35 tall RARE
vintage 1936 royal douton england bunnykins porcelaiin round bank 35 tall rare
$49.99
quality
NEW Royal Doulton Dream Keepers The Purpose of Life Rare Mint w Box
new royal doulton dream keepers the purpose of life rare mint w box
$12.99
quality
Rare ROYAL COPENHAGEN Fish Figurine Trout 1602
rare royal copenhagen fish figurine trout 1602
$74.99
quality
RARE Vtg Ash Tray Mid Century Royal Haeger 104 Ceramic Ashtray
rare vtg ash tray mid century royal haeger 104 ceramic ashtray
$65.00
quality
Rare Royal Haeger sea Shell Angel WING Ash Tray Vintage antique Gold lay 155
rare royal haeger sea shell angel wing ash tray vintage antique gold lay 155
$29.82
quality
RARE Royal Doulton D3596 Romeo Limited Edition Shakespearian Character Tray K339
rare royal doulton d3596 romeo limited edition shakespearian character tray k339
$119.95
quality
SUPERB  RARE ANTIQUE ROYAL DOULTON FLOW BLUE SHAKESPEARE PLATE ca 1910 EXC COND
superb rare antique royal doulton flow blue shakespeare plate ca 1910 exc cond
$109.00
quality
RARE ROYAL COPENHAGEN DECORATIVE B W PLATE MALMO DEC MCMXIV TRIANGULAR SHAPED
rare royal copenhagen decorative b w plate malmo dec mcmxiv triangular shaped
$999.99
quality
RARE ROYAL COPENHAGEN DECORATIVE B W PLATE 1903 GIENTOFTE KOMMUNES RAADHUS
rare royal copenhagen decorative b w plate 1903 gientofte kommunes raadhus
$999.99
quality
Vintage Royal Doulton Jane 1998 Limited Edition Very rare
vintage royal doulton jane 1998 limited edition very rare
$100.00
quality
Royal Doulton Figurine DOG Playful Terrier HN2510 RARE
royal doulton figurine dog playful terrier hn2510 rare
$149.99
quality
RARE COLLECTABLE PLATE MONCHENGLADBACH RHEYDT ROYAL COPENHAGEN SIGNED BY ARTIST
rare collectable plate monchengladbach rheydt royal copenhagen signed by artist
$27.00
quality
RARE Royal Copenhagen RACING DRIVER Figurine FORMULA ONE DENMARK
rare royal copenhagen racing driver figurine formula one denmark
$29.21
quality
Royal Dutch Silverworks Elweretta Line  Spoons Rare Spinning Windmill
royal dutch silverworks elweretta line spoons rare spinning windmill
$29.99
quality
FROG Lily Pad Leaf Dish 2477 VTG ROYAL COPENHAGEN DENMARK Erik Nielsen RARE 1958
frog lily pad leaf dish 2477 vtg royal copenhagen denmark erik nielsen rare 1958
$66.99
quality
RARE SET OF 6 FISH PLATES Royal Copenhagen Bing  Grondahl SEAGULL DENMARK
rare set of 6 fish plates royal copenhagen bing grondahl seagull denmark
$49.21
quality
Midsummer Nights Dream Royal Copenhagen Tea Pot Only Never Used RARE
midsummer nights dream royal copenhagen tea pot only never used rare
$1,810.00
quality
ANTIQUE RARE ROYAL DOULTON BESS FIGURINE
antique rare royal doulton bess figurine
$150.00
quality
Rare Royal Doulton Geoffrey Chaucer Two Handled Character Jug 122 1500
rare royal doulton geoffrey chaucer two handled character jug 122 1500
$830.00
quality
Royal Doulton Red Flambe Dragon HN3552 Collectors Club RARE COLLECTIBLE
royal doulton red flambe dragon hn3552 collectors club rare collectible
$261.75
quality
RARE Royal Doulton King John Character Jug LIMITED EDITION 11 1500
rare royal doulton king john character jug limited edition 11 1500
$559.00
quality
RARE ROYAL DOULTON GEOFFREY CHAUCER LIMITED EDITION 189 1500
rare royal doulton geoffrey chaucer limited edition 189 1500
$945.00
quality
NEW VINTAGE RARE LENOX LARGE ROYAL ELEPHANT VASE JEWELED FIGURINE BEAUTIFUL
new vintage rare lenox large royal elephant vase jeweled figurine beautiful
$35.99
quality
DAHL JENSEN RARE 1246 TIGER SITTING ROYAL CROWN COPENHAGEN DENMARK PORCELAIN
dahl jensen rare 1246 tiger sitting royal crown copenhagen denmark porcelain
$1,475.62
quality
RARE ROYAL COPENHAGEN PLAQUE OLD MARK ENERET MOLDED RELIEF PLAQUE
rare royal copenhagen plaque old mark eneret molded relief plaque
$9.99
quality
Rare Royal Copenhagen Commemorative Plate 1920 193 Aarhus Brandkorpsforening
rare royal copenhagen commemorative plate 1920 193 aarhus brandkorpsforening
$120.00
quality
Royal Doulton FIRST NOEL  Pretty Lady Petite Songs of Christmas  RARE NEW
royal doulton first noel pretty lady petite songs of christmas rare new
$79.99
quality
Antique Royal Doulton England Kiwi Birds Large Milk Jug Pitcher RARE
antique royal doulton england kiwi birds large milk jug pitcher rare
$45.99
quality
RARE VINTAGE ROYAL DOULTON D6468 MINE HOST LARGE TOBY MUG JUG MUST SEE NO RES
rare vintage royal doulton d6468 mine host large toby mug jug must see no res
$39.99
quality
VERY RARE ROYAL DOULTON UNDER THE GREENWWOD TREE PLATTER D6341 NO RESERVE
very rare royal doulton under the greenwwod tree platter d6341 no reserve
$49.99
quality
RARE ROYAL DOULTON LITTLE MESTER MUSEUM PIECE 224 MUST SEE NO RESERVE
rare royal doulton little mester museum piece 224 must see no reserve
$49.99
quality
FABULLUS RARE ROYAL DOULTON THE LONDON BOBBY TOBY MUG MUST SEE NO RESERVE
fabullus rare royal doulton the london bobby toby mug must see no reserve
$39.99
quality
RARE 2004 ROYAL COPENHAGEN CHRISTMAS CEREAL BOWL AWAITING THE CHRISTMAS TRAIN
rare 2004 royal copenhagen christmas cereal bowl awaiting the christmas train
$27.99
quality
RARE 2003 ROYAL COPENHAGEN CHRISTMAS PLATE CEREAL BOWL SEASONS GREETINGS
rare 2003 royal copenhagen christmas plate cereal bowl seasons greetings
$27.99
quality
Rare Vintage Royal Doulton Figurine Trade Catalog Color Gift House Ulster Hogg
rare vintage royal doulton figurine trade catalog color gift house ulster hogg
$9.99
quality
Very Rare Royal Doulton Figurine Gillian HN 1670 Excellent Dated 1935
very rare royal doulton figurine gillian hn 1670 excellent dated 1935
$350.00
quality
RARE SIZE 8 half  TALL SIR JOHN FALSTAFF TOBY MUG JUG FIGURINE ROYAL DOULTON 8328
rare size 8 half tall sir john falstaff toby mug jug figurine royal doulton 8328
$24.30
quality
Royal Doulton Brambly Hedge 1997 Rare Year Plate Excellent Condition
royal doulton brambly hedge 1997 rare year plate excellent condition
$40.99
quality
Rare Royal Doulton Series Ware Dickens Bill Sykes Friar Shape Small Jug D5175
rare royal doulton series ware dickens bill sykes friar shape small jug d5175
$89.00
quality
RARE ROYAL WORCESTER CROWN WARE SALT AND PEPPER SHAKER 4 VINTAGE ENGLAND MARKED
rare royal worcester crown ware salt and pepper shaker 4 vintage england marked
$8.99
quality
ROYAL DOULTON Signed Vogue series 2003 Rare 5 figurines Vogue Fashion Style
royal doulton signed vogue series 2003 rare 5 figurines vogue fashion style
$700.00
quality
VTG Royal Copenhagen Going Home For Christmas 1973 In Box Collectible Rare
vtg royal copenhagen going home for christmas 1973 in box collectible rare
$49.99
quality
Coffee Mug Valentine Friendship Hearts by Royal Norfolk Cafe RARE tapered Cup
coffee mug valentine friendship hearts by royal norfolk cafe rare tapered cup
$1.48
quality
RARE Royal Doulton 1934 1950 D5437 Floral Pattern S 1025 Great Plate
rare royal doulton 1934 1950 d5437 floral pattern s 1025 great plate
$23.00
quality
Royal Winton Grimwades English Bone China 3 Tier Cake Dessert Server Blue Rare
royal winton grimwades english bone china 3 tier cake dessert server blue rare
$37.95
quality
Clown Figure Crown Royal Statuette Hand Painted and Numbered Rare Hard to Find
clown figure crown royal statuette hand painted and numbered rare hard to find
$9.88
quality
ROYAL COPENHAGEN BLUE DENMARK LANGELINIE SOUVENIR LITTLE MERMAID 45 PLATE RARE
royal copenhagen blue denmark langelinie souvenir little mermaid 45 plate rare
$39.95
quality
Vintage RARE 1950s Version Royal Doulton Figurine Hn2117 The Skater Excellent
vintage rare 1950s version royal doulton figurine hn2117 the skater excellent
$124.99
quality
VINTAGE ROYAL DOULTON TOBY JUG Greetings Cliff Cornell Rare Brown Suit
vintage royal doulton toby jug greetings cliff cornell rare brown suit
$143.65
quality
Vintage Royal Doulton Retired HN2167 1955 Home Again Figurine Excellent RARE
vintage royal doulton retired hn2167 1955 home again figurine excellent rare
$89.00
quality
Duncan Royale Soda Pop Santa Miniature 1st Edition RARE
duncan royale soda pop santa miniature 1st edition rare
$112.50
quality
Rare Royal Doulton Figurine Blighty HN323 Titanian by EW Light
rare royal doulton figurine blighty hn323 titanian by ew light
$1,275.00
quality
ROYAL COPENHAGEN DACHSHUND DOG DENMARK RARE TAIL CHASER FIGURE 4
royal copenhagen dachshund dog denmark rare tail chaser figure 4
$120.00
quality
Artist Signed Royal Copenhagen Flower Bee Bud Vase Denmark Rare Collectible
artist signed royal copenhagen flower bee bud vase denmark rare collectible
$19.99
quality
Bing  Grondahl Millenium figurine Royal Copenhagen Boy with dog puppy RARE
bing grondahl millenium figurine royal copenhagen boy with dog puppy rare
$97.00
quality
Royal Doulton Balloon Girl Rare Signed  Numbered Retired Figurine
royal doulton balloon girl rare signed numbered retired figurine
$79.99
quality
Royal doulton figurines 2 beautiful ladies that accent each other 1 maybe Rare
royal doulton figurines 2 beautiful ladies that accent each other 1 maybe rare
$105.99
quality
Rare Royal Doulton Balloon Lady HN2935 Discontinued  Modeled By Peter A Gee
rare royal doulton balloon lady hn2935 discontinued modeled by peter a gee
$89.99
quality
VINTAGE ROYAL DOULTON THE BALLOON MAN SIGNED  NUMBERED FIGURINE Rare HN 1954
vintage royal doulton the balloon man signed numbered figurine rare hn 1954
$59.99
quality
Rare Royal Copenhagen Plate The Training Ship 1961 Christmas
rare royal copenhagen plate the training ship 1961 christmas
$95.00
quality
Rare Royal Copenhagen The Stag 1960 Christmas Collectible Plate
rare royal copenhagen the stag 1960 christmas collectible plate
$135.00
quality
Royal Orleans Rose Petal Place David Kirschner Pitterpat Cat Figurine 1983 Rare
royal orleans rose petal place david kirschner pitterpat cat figurine 1983 rare
$19.99
quality
Rare Royal Copenhagen Alumina Naval Officer Ceramic Jug
rare royal copenhagen alumina naval officer ceramic jug
$175.00
quality
1935 Rare Royal Worcester Bone China Figurine Blue Dress Noel
1935 rare royal worcester bone china figurine blue dress noel
$199.00
quality
RARE Vintage Antique TAPESTRY Bell Unmarked Royal Bayreuth Cows in Pasture
rare vintage antique tapestry bell unmarked royal bayreuth cows in pasture
$103.00
quality
RARE ROYAL COPENHAGEN GIRL FIGURINE DENMARK INUIT GREENLAND PORCELAIN FIGURE
rare royal copenhagen girl figurine denmark inuit greenland porcelain figure
$259.00
quality
Royal Doulton Yachtsman toby mugRARE
royal doulton yachtsman toby mugrare
$54.99
quality
Royal Doulton Snowman D7241 Character Toby Jug Limited Edition 80 Boxed Rare
royal doulton snowman d7241 character toby jug limited edition 80 boxed rare
$149.00
quality
VINTAGE SHEILDS OF 5TH AVENUE NY ROYAL GUARD VALET DRESSER CADDY RARE
vintage sheilds of 5th avenue ny royal guard valet dresser caddy rare
$7.99
quality
Vintage Royal Copenhagen Christmas Plate 1943 The Flight to Egypt RARE WARTIME
vintage royal copenhagen christmas plate 1943 the flight to egypt rare wartime
$395.00
quality
ROYAL DOULTON FRODO LORD OF THE RINGS MIDDLE EARTH MINT RARE REG295
royal doulton frodo lord of the rings middle earth mint rare reg295
$113.05
quality
VTG Royal Doulton England Fine Bone China Lucky Black Cat Kitten Figurine Rare
vtg royal doulton england fine bone china lucky black cat kitten figurine rare
$99.87
quality
ROYAL DOULTON TOBY MUG VINTAGE RETRO SIMPLE SIMON CHARACTER MUG RARE DESIGNER
royal doulton toby mug vintage retro simple simon character mug rare designer
$144.99
quality
RARE LARGE ROYAL COPENHAGEN DENMARK FARM LANDSCAPE BIRDS VASE 102776 1217
rare large royal copenhagen denmark farm landscape birds vase 102776 1217
$79.99
quality
ROYAL DOULTON REFLECTIONS FIGURINE HN 1847 VERY VERY RARE COLLECTABLES
royal doulton reflections figurine hn 1847 very very rare collectables
$1,050.00
quality
Royal Doulton Camille HN1586 Bone China Potted 1933 Figurine 675 EX RARE
royal doulton camille hn1586 bone china potted 1933 figurine 675 ex rare
$1,168.00
quality

Rare 1950s 2 Gallon MACMILLAN Royal Scot Motor Oil Can
rare 1950s 2 gallon macmillan royal scot motor oil can
$90.00
quality
Royal Doulton Beswick Beatrix Potter MR JACKSON THE TOAD BP3a RARE 1st VERSION
royal doulton beswick beatrix potter mr jackson the toad bp3a rare 1st version
$119.99
quality
Royal Doulton Beatrix Potter RARE FOXY WHISKERED GENTLEMAN SATIN FINISH BP11A
royal doulton beatrix potter rare foxy whiskered gentleman satin finish bp11a
$39.99
quality
RARE Limited Edition Royal Doulton Gentle Arts Series Writing Figure w Stand
rare limited edition royal doulton gentle arts series writing figure w stand
$150.00
quality
ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY ENGRAVED RH BRASS SLEEVE BADGE UNIQUE AND RARE  024R
royal field artillery engraved rh brass sleeve badge unique and rare 024r
$33.47
quality
RAOB Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes CARVED BUFFALO HEAD PIPE RARE 644R
raob royal antediluvian order of buffaloes carved buffalo head pipe rare 644r
$26.03
quality
Royal Doulton ORANGE BLOSSOM PATTERN CHOCOLATE POT WITH GOLD Dated 1884 RARE
royal doulton orange blossom pattern chocolate pot with gold dated 1884 rare
$139.99
quality
KLM Royal Dutch Boeing 777 200ER PH BQF Aircraft Model 1400 Scale Phoenix RARE
klm royal dutch boeing 777 200er ph bqf aircraft model 1400 scale phoenix rare
$26.24
quality
RARE SILVER ROYAL CARRIAGE COACH WITH HORSES AND WIDERS SIGNED BAGUES  15
rare silver royal carriage coach with horses and widers signed bagues 15
$990.00
quality
Royal Doulton Figurine NORMA M36 Retired 1945 RARE
royal doulton figurine norma m36 retired 1945 rare
$425.00
quality
Royal Doulton Stoneware MOTTO TYG 3 Handled More Than Enough Rare Item 1890s
royal doulton stoneware motto tyg 3 handled more than enough rare item 1890s
$129.99
quality
RARE ROYAL DOULTON REFLECTIONS FIGURINE JOY HN 3184 EXC
rare royal doulton reflections figurine joy hn 3184 exc
$239.99
quality
RARE MINT CONDITION Collectable Royal Haeger USA Floral Design 16 Vase
rare mint condition collectable royal haeger usa floral design 16 vase
$60.00
quality
RARE Royal Copenhagen Large Dog 318 BOB Labrador Puppy by Christian Thomsen
rare royal copenhagen large dog 318 bob labrador puppy by christian thomsen
$199.99
quality
Rare Royal Doulton Punch And Judy Large Mug Jug 792 Of 2500 Double Sided
rare royal doulton punch and judy large mug jug 792 of 2500 double sided
$275.00
quality
Early Rare Royal Copenhagen Dog 1688 Sitting German Shepherd 8 20cm
early rare royal copenhagen dog 1688 sitting german shepherd 8 20cm
$325.00
quality
RARE FIND ROYAL MILITARY POLICE  FEMALE OFFICER VISOR CAP with Badge
rare find royal military police female officer visor cap with badge
$44.99
quality
Rare 1912 Signed Cabinet Photo by Pietzner Austria General  Royal Family
rare 1912 signed cabinet photo by pietzner austria general royal family
$49.50
quality
Rare Old Copper Hollow Out Flower Ancient Royal Faming Use Big Noble Oil Lamp
rare old copper hollow out flower ancient royal faming use big noble oil lamp
$39.99
quality
Royal RED STILBITE Mineral Specimen India RARE ITEM B 9
royal red stilbite mineral specimen india rare item b 9
$75.00
quality
1950 Royal Dessert Pudding Comp Box Howdy Doody Coloring Hop RARE Blue UNOPENED
1950 royal dessert pudding comp box howdy doody coloring hop rare blue unopened
$95.00
quality
1950 Royal Dessert Pudding Comp Box Howdy Doody Coloring Card 7 RARE Blue var
1950 royal dessert pudding comp box howdy doody coloring card 7 rare blue var
$95.00
quality
Harmony Kingdom Friend Of The Royal Watch Toucans RW CC 1998 Mbrs Exc NIB RARE
harmony kingdom friend of the royal watch toucans rw cc 1998 mbrs exc nib rare
$94.00
quality
Rare Royal Yacht Britannia cotton tea towel 60th official Denise Andrews 18x31
rare royal yacht britannia cotton tea towel 60th official denise andrews 18x31
$22.67
quality
RARE Huge 12 Franklin Mint 1986 White ROYAL SWAN Porcelain Display Base Stand
rare huge 12 franklin mint 1986 white royal swan porcelain display base stand
$34.94
quality
RARE WW2 British Formal Dress Uniform Dress White Royal Army Uniform
rare ww2 british formal dress uniform dress white royal army uniform
$65.00
quality
Beatrix Potter Bunnykins CHRISTMAS PARTY Porridge Bowl Royal Doulton rare
beatrix potter bunnykins christmas party porridge bowl royal doulton rare
$49.99
quality
VINTAGE OLD RARE ROYAL DANSK AD LOT OF 2 LITHO TIN SIGN BOARD 2001
vintage old rare royal dansk ad lot of 2 litho tin sign board 2001
$55.00
quality

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Rare Royal

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Michael Flatley rare performance Royal Variety Show

Politics and rare coins might not seem to go together, but they are linked throughout the history of the United States. From the first coins of the 1650s to the change you carry in your pocket today, political influence has been a significant part of United States coinage.

The first coins struck in what is now the United States were minted in 1652, more than a century before the "United States" existed. The Massachusetts Bay Colony struck silver coins from 1652 through about 1682, yet all but one of the denominations always carried the date 1652 regardless of the actual year of issue. Why? Politics. Since the coins were minted openly, there was real intent to fool the British Crown into believing that all of coinage in circulation was actually minted in 1652, when there was no monarchy. Instead, it was probably a courtesy. The colonists were saying: "We're going to continue to mint our own coins while not appearing to flagrantly ignore your edicts."

In 1665, after receiving a book of laws from the colonists, the King's Commissioners requested that a number of laws be changed or repealed. Among them was the following: ". . .title money, the law about a mint house, etc., be repealed, for coining is a royal prerogative, for the usurping of which yet act of indemnity is only a salvo."

Salvo? More like a salvation, as the coins were desperately needed in the colonies. It was time when wampum, musket bullets, and counterfeit foreign coins were used as money alongside the few legitimate coins that were available. The colonists ignored the request of the Crown, evidently without penalty.

The Civil War of 1861-65 presented tremendous problems for circulating coinage.

The silver half dime was one of the many denominations that wasn't circulating, and the five-cent fractional currency was considered to be a poor substitute. A solution to the problem was a coin of a new metal, and coins struck in nickel were introduced.

Nickel is impractical for coin production, as its hardness is conducive to laminations, die breaks, poor strikes, and many other problems. When James Pollock, director of the Mint in 1865, proposed a new nickel alloy for coinage, he was under the influence of political pressure. His personal preference was for coins made of French bronze, but nickel magnate Joseph Wharton had many friends in Congress, and the new nickel alloy won out. Nickel had been used in the copper-nickel cents of 1856-64, but the demand or nickel became unprecedented with the introduction of the three cent nickel (1865) and the five cent nickel (1866).

Nickel coins are still struck today, of course, and many of the problems are just as prevalent. Try putting together a set of problem-free Jefferson nickels, let alone such series as Buffalo nickels or Shield nickels.

The political clout of the followers of the late Anthony Comstock led to a significant change in our coinage in 1917. Hermon MacNeil's magnificent Standing Liberty quarter design, first introduced in 1916, was beautiful and popular. It was also scandalous, at least to the highly vocal Society for the Suppression of Vice. Treasury Secretary William McAdoo was bombarded with complaints about Miss Liberty's partial nudity, and in mid-1917 the design was modified to cover the lady. It is often argued that there were other reasons for the change, such as 1) the type one coins wouldn't stack, or 2) the chain mail placed on Miss Liberty was a symbol of war, or 3) it was done so the coin would strike up better. Argument #3 is totally invalid, as the type one Standing Liberty quarter is consistently far superior in strike to the type two. The other two arguments have a degree of credibility based on surviving documents, but the most important reason for the change was almost assuredly a case of "comstockery" as the prudery was labeled by prominent writers of the era.

While the incidents of coins mixing with politics mentioned above are famous ones, perhaps no other case can quite compare to the Morgan dollar. The Mint Act of 1873 abolished this denomination, along with the other issues such as the three-cent silver and the half dime. By 1878 the silver dollar was back as the result of extreme political pressure from the silver interests, such as the owners of the gigantic Comstock Lode, a monumental silver mine in Nevada. Overriding a presidential veto, the Bland-Allison Act of February 28, 1878 provided that the government would purchase $2 million to $4 million in domestic silver for coinage into silver dollars. It took less than two weeks for the new design to be approved, the dies made, and the first proofs struck.

The Sherman Silver Purchase Act set the amount of silver to be purchased monthly at an exact figure-187 tons per month. When the act was repealed in 1893, the mine owners were rich and the Treasury vaults were overflowing with unneeded silver dollars. It wasn't until 1898 that legislation provided for the disposal of the remaining silver through continued silver dollar mintage. In 1904, the silver finally ran out in 1893, the mine owners were rich and the Treasury vaults were overflowing with unneeded silver dollars. It wasn't until 1898 that legislation provided for the disposal of the remaining silver through continued silver dollar mintage. In 1904, the silver finally ran out, and Morgan dollar production ended for 17 years.

The story of the Morgan dollar was nearly finished-but not quite. In 1918 the Pittman Act was instituted, which required the melting of up to 350,000,000 silver dollars. A little over a quarter of a billion-that's right, billion-were actually melted, but political pressure caused another weird scenario. The silver lobby persuaded Congress to include a clause that domestic silver be purchased to replace the silver dollars lost in the melting. What was this silver used for? Starting in 1921, it was used to mint silver dollars!

Coins and politics. Politics and coins. After nearly 350 years, they are still inextricably entwined, an integral part of our past and an inevitable part of our future.

The three-cent nickel: the alloy won out over silver

About the Author

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