Summary

Copper One Penny Token, mint unknown. Issued by Mason & Culley, General Stores, Williamstown, Victoria, circa 1855. Sharples notes that 'This token type is a pattern for an issue which was never placed into circulation' (Sharples, 1993). It is not until 1857 that Mason & Culley are listed in Melbourne Directories. In that year Mason was listed as a general dealer, and Culley as a clothier and draper, both in Nelson's Parade, Williamstown. Both men continued their businesses in Williamstown into the 1860s.

Physical Description

A round copper token (34 mm diameter). The token features the name, business and town of the issuer: Mason & Culley General Stores Williamstown. The reverse features Britannia seated facing right wearing a plumed Corinthian helmet and resting a trident against her right shoulder. Leaning behind her is an oval shield decorated with the Union Jack. She extends a pair of balanced scales with her left hand; above, VICTORIA

Obverse Description

Across center within line circle in two lines, MASON / & / CULLEY around above, GENERAL STORES, around below, WILLIAMSTOWN

Reverse Description

Britannia seated facing right wearing a plumed Corinthian helmet and resting a trident against her right shoulder. Leaning behind her is an oval shield decorated with the Union Jack. She extends a pair of balanced scales with her left hand; above, VICTORIA

Edge Description

Plain

More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Numismatics & Philately, Working Life & Trades

  • Acquisition Information

    Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), 15/3/1976

  • Date Issued

    circa 1855 AD

  • Issued By

    Mason & Culley, Williamstown, Greater Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

  • Commissioned By

    Mason & Culley, Williamstown, Greater Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, circa 1855

  • Previous Collection

    A. H. Baldwin

  • Inscriptions

    Obverse: MASON & CULLEY GENERAL STORES WILLIAMSTOWN Reverse: VICTORIA

  • Denomination

    1 Penny

  • Series

    Trade Tokens

  • Material

    Copper

  • Axis

    12

  • Classification

    Trade tokens, Australia - victoria, Working strikes

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline

    Numismatics

  • Type of item

    Object

  • Dimensions

    15.983 g (Weight)

  • Shape

    round

  • References

    Sharples, J., 'Catalogue of Victorian Trade Tokens,' in Journal of the Numismatic Association of Australia, Vol. 7, December 1993, p.77. Hope, John. Mason & Culley. Unpublished MSS. 2005: 3 pps. Noble Numismatics Cat. Sale 96 5-8 April 2011 p. 71 Lot 920: notes from AH Baldwin's notebook. "The above piece is of the utmost rarity. The writer has a letter from Mr. Mason in which he states that the ship was wrecked on the voyage out and that he never received any tokens, so the one or two that are kmnown must be odd pieces retained by the makers or their workmen." Alfred Chitty Collection Catalogue 1923, p. 105,
    [Article] Sharples, John P. 1993. A Catalogue of the Trade Tokens of Victoria 1848 to 1862. Journal of the Numismatic Association of Australia. vol.7: p.1-77., VP. 3
    [Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand., Rel No. 53
    [Book] Andrews, Arthur. 1921. Australasian Tokens and Coins., No. 353

  • Keywords

    Import Trade, Retail Trade, Retailing