Summary

Copper Halfpenny token, minted by Heaton & Sons of Birmingham, circa 1857. Issued by Smith, Peate & Co. Grocers, Tea & Wine Merchants in Sydney. In 1852 Edward A. Smith joined Thomas Peate to form Smith, Peate and Co., Shipping and Family Grocers and Wine Merchants, in Sydney. Their grandfathers, Captain George Peate and William Smith, had been the owners of a trading vessel Sally from 1820-1825. During the 1860s the business did well and claimed the patronage of 'His Excellency, the Governor in Chief.' The business continued without substantial change until 1880 when a new partner was brought in and the business became Peate and Harcourt. In 1886 W.H. Peate, son of Thomas, moved the business to larger premises, and in 1893 T.J. Turton became a partner in the firm. The Smiths and Harcourt had all retired from the business by this time. The Business closed in 1897 and the building was demolished.

Previous Collections: Henry S. Smith, South Australia

Physical Description

A round copper token (28 mm diameter). The token design featuring the name, address, business and foundation date of the issuer: Smith, Peate and Co., 258 & 260 George Street Sydney, grocers, tea dealers, wine merchants. The reverse depicts Justice standing facing left, blindfolded and extending balanced scales from her right hand, her left hand rests on an inverted cornucopiae from which fruits flow. A sailing ship is seen on the horizon to the left of the figure. This was part of a large issuer of tokens production of which involved four obverse and three reverse dies. The obverse of all dies bore the same legend. This die was characterised by the letters of the words WINE MERCHANTS being 24.9 mm long; 128 dots around the edge and the A of TEA being 2.0 mm from the D of DEALERS. This die had the T of ST. re-entered. The reverse die is characterised by the distance of the start and end of the word ESTABLISHED to the horizon is: E to sea 9.0 mm, D to sea 10.0 mm; border of 113 dots. The scale bar extended would pass through the E and below the D of ESTABLISHED. See notes tab for a table of other die variations.

Obverse Description

SMITH, PEATE & Co. / GROCERS / TEA DEALERS / & / WINE MERCHANTS / 258 & 260 / GEORGE ST. / SYDNEY

Reverse Description

The reverse depicts Justice standing facing left, blindfolded and extending balanced scales from her right hand, her left hand rests on an inverted cornucopiae from which fruits flow. A sailing ship is seen on the horizon to the left of the figure. Above ESTABLISHED, in exergue, 1836.

Edge Description

Plain

More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Numismatics & Philately, Sustainable Futures, Working Life & Trades

  • Acquisition Information

    Cultural Gifts Donation from Mr Robert (Bob) Edwards, 1989

  • Date Issued

    circa 1857 AD

  • Issued By

    Smith, Peate & Co., Sydney, Greater Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1854-1864

  • Mint

    Heaton & Sons (Mint), Birmingham, England, Great Britain

  • Previous Collection

    Mr Henry S. Smith

  • Inscriptions

    Obverse: SMITH, PEATE & Co. GROCERS TEA DEALERS & WINE MERCHANTS 258 & 260 GEORGE ST. SYDNEY Reverse: ESTABLISHED 1836

  • Denomination

    Halfpenny

  • Series

    Trade Tokens

  • Material

    Copper

  • Axis

    12

  • Classification

    Trade tokens, Australia - new south wales, Working strikes

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline

    Numismatics

  • Type of item

    Object

  • Dimensions

    8.09 g (Weight)

  • Shape

    Round

  • References

    The dies employed in this series are generally poorly described employing the minor variations of alignments of letter. Chitty uses phrases like "perhaps a trifle more under the E" catalogue p. 42 , Andrews ""The & is slightly to the right of E in line above the verticle line of which if continued would pass between OC of GROCERS. p. 84, and Heyde warns " Students should not take these descriptions too seriously. Not all of the pieces have been assembled and some of the descriptions have been worked out from those given by Andrews and, particularly Chitty" p. 71. Table of obverse die variations. This token struck with dies H/4. Die WINE MERCHANTS A to D Rim dots Notes F 24.0 mm 1.2 mm 122 This die chipped at 04 see NU 4322 G 24.5 mm 1.7 mm 126 This die chipped at 07 see NU 4323 H 24.9 mm 2.0 mm 128 T of St is re-entered see NU 4324 I 24.6 mm 2.0 mm ? see NU 4330 Table of reverse die variations Die E to sea D to sea Rim dots Extension of scale bar 2 8.5 mm 9.0 mm 113 through E above D see NU 11701
    [Book] Andrews, Arthur. 1921. Australasian Tokens and Coins., No. 487
    [Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand., NO. 226/2

  • Keywords

    Grocers, Retailing, Shops, Tea, Wine & Spirit Merchants