Copper One Penny Token, minted by W.J. Taylor, London. Issued by T.F. Merry & Co, General Merchants, Toowoomba, Queensland, circa 1863. A short biography of Merry by F. Simpson was published in the Australian Coin Review, September 1970. According to Simpson, Merry was born on 1 March 1829 in England. Migrating to Australia in 1851, he worked as a a Draper's assistant in Hobart, before moving to Brisbane, where he established a store which he later sold. Some time later he moved to Toowoomba and established himself as a general merchant, he opened branches of his business in Warwick, Stanthorpe, Goondawindi and other Queensland locations. He was one of the first directors of the co-operative store J.P. Barnes & Co., which still existed as the Barnes Co-op in 1970.
Previous Collections: George McArthur
A round copper token (34 mm diameter). The token design featuring the name, business and Town of the issuer: T.F. Merry & Co. general merchants, Toowoomba and on the reverse a Coat of Arms consisting of a central shield below a Rising Sun and supported by an emu at left and kangaroo at right all resting on a ribbon with the motto ADVANCE AUSTRALIA. The shield is quartered and contains: upper left - a golden fleece; upper right - a three-masted sailing ship; lower left - a bull standing facing left; lower right a anchor.
T.F.MERRY / GENERAL / MERCHANTS / TOOWOOMBA the first and last lines being curved
At centre Coat of Arms consisting of a central shield below a Rising Sun and supported by an emu at left and kangaroo at right all resting on a ribbon with the motto ADVANCE AUSTRALIA. The shield is quartered and contains: upper left - a golden fleece; upper right - a three-masted sailing ship; lower left - a bull standing facing left; lower right a anchor. Above, PEACE & PLENTY
Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), George McArthur, 15 Mar 1976
circa 1863 AD
Obverse: T.F.MERRY & Co. GENERAL MERCHANTS TOOWOOMBA Reverse: PEACE & PLENTY ADVANCE AUSTRALIA
Type of item
34 mm (Outside Diameter), 14.833 g (Weight)
W.J. Taylor employed two slightly different obverse dies to manufacture tokens for T.F. Merry & Co together with one stock Arms reverse. Obverse die A cracked initially from the rims at 03 & 09 (this token) but later through most of the word TOOWOOMBA (NU 11420). The new die, Obverse B was then needed to complete the order. The differences between the dies (other than the die cracking when present) were slight and are best tested by measurement of the following: Die GENERAL space between GENERAL and MERCHANTS Border dots A 17.5 mm 2.8 mm 130 B 18.0 mm 3.3 mm 129 In addition there is a slight difference in the alignment of letters. For example a line down the left edge of the verticle stroke of the L of GENERAL would pass down the left side of the letter T below it on Obverse A but down the right side on Obverse B. The same reverse die was used for the Merry & Bush issue of 1863 as there is a characteristic die crack from the rim to the E of PEACE. This suggests that the T.F. Merry issue is contemporary with the dated 1863 Merry and Bush.
[Thesis] Lugton, Mary E. 1989. George McArthur of Maldon: his Life and his Book Collection.
[Catalogue] Morrison, Ian. 2003. The Baker of Maldon.
[Book] Andrews, Arthur. 1921. Australasian Tokens and Coins., No. 367
[Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand., No. 169/2