Copper One Penny Token, minted by Thomas Stokes, Melbourne. Issued by B. Gittos, Leather Merchant, Auckland, 1864. Benjamin Gittos, 1808 - 1884, was one of Auckland's earliest settlers. The Gittos family arrived in Auckland in 1840 and made camp near the waterfront before moving to farm near Hokianga. In 1845 the European settlers at Hokianga fled to Auckland following the outbreak of war with Hone Heke. Two years later Gittos started a leather business in the city, expanding to run a tannery at Avondale, on the Wahu river in 1863. At this tannery he initiated the techniques for tanning with the bark of native trees such as the tanekaha and the towhai. Gittos' son William was an important Methodist missionary in northern New Zealand who learnt Maori language and acted as an interpreter and negotiator between Maori and Pakeha (Europeans) in land and other deals.
Previous Collections: Henry Smith
A round copper token (28 mm diameter) featuring the name, address and business of the company that issued the tokens: B. Gittos, Wyndham St. Auckland, leather merchant and importer of boots and shoes. This token has been cleaned.
Legend in six lines: B. GITTOS / LEATHER / MERCHANT / IMPORTER OF / BOOTS & SHOES / &c. &c.
Legend in nine lines: WHOLESALE & RETAIL / LEATHER / & / GRINDERY / STORES / WYNDHAM STREET / AUCKLAND / N.Z. / 1864
Cultural Gifts Donation from Mr Robert (Bob) Edwards, 1989
Obverse: B. GITTOS LEATHER MERCHANT IMPORTER OF BOOTS & SHOES &c. &c. Reverse: WHOLESALE & RETAIL LEATHER & GRINDERY STORES WYNDHAM STREET AUCKLAND N.Z. 1864
Type of item
14.3 g (Weight)
[Book] Andrews, Arthur. 1921. Australasian Tokens and Coins., No. 149
[Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand., No. 83
[Book] Lampard, William H. 1981. Catalogue of New Zealand Coins Tokens Bank Notes., No. 319
[Book] Humberstone, Vaughn. 2010. Merchants Making Money.