1/2 Penny, Issued by Nova Scotia, Canada, 1823
Minted in Birmingham

Obverse Description

Laureate and draped bust of King George IV facing left; around, PROVINCE OF NOVA SCOTIA

Reverse Description

A two-leaved thistle head; around, HALFPENNY TOKEN 1823

Edge Description

Indented cord milling


The local legislature of Nova Scotia had sought the right to issue coins in 1817 and got as far as legislation being passed in Britain (Act (57 Geo. III. c.2)) but this failed to gain Royal Assent. In 1824 they ordered tokens from a firm in Birmingham without seeking approval from the Home Office. These proved successful and further orders were made in 1832, 1840 and 1843. On 25 October 1855 they sought approval for a further issue. This was approved by the British Treasury and resulted in a new authorised issue in 1856 still using the word 'token', an indication that the metal content of the pieces was not full value.

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