Brass Token, minted by Whitty and Brown, Sydney. Issued by the Australian Steam Navigation Co, Sydney, 1851. On 30 June 1851 the Hunter River Steam Navigation Company changed its name to the Australasian Steam Navigation Company (ASN Co), when the original company's objectives were felt to be too restrictive. The renamed company immediately ordered two new ships from Britain. Upon their arrival in April 1852 they were engaged on services to Victoria for the booming gold fields trade, and a further six steamers were ordered from Britain by the end of the year. During the 1850s, the ASN Co. engaged in cut-throat competition with a range of other steamship companies in the Australian market, driving a number out of business including the rival Sydney and Melbourne Steam Packet Company.
A uniface round copper token (31 mm dia) featuring the initials of the issuing company ASNCo and three men wearing hats in a boat on a choppy sea, two are rowing and the third steering.
The initials of the issuing company ASNCo above three men wearing hats in a boat advancing left on a choppy sea, two are rowing and the third steering
Purchase from Max Stern & Co. Ltd, 11 1976
circa 1851 AD
Type of item
12.881 g (Weight)
Australian Science at Work website. Australasian Steam Navigation Company summary page. [Link 1] (27/04/05); Australian Science at Work website. Australasian United Steam Navigation Company summary page. [Link 2] (27/04/05); Bach, John. A Maritime History of Australia. 1976. Chapters VI and IX; Spink's Numismatic Circular September 1898. Dr. M.H. Long stated " There was another token that was in circulation when I first arrived in the Colony (1855) whether actually issued as a laborers check or a panny token, I have not been able to ascertain, but it was accepted as currency .... Probably struck by Whitty and Brown." Spink's Numismatic Circular September 1898 - John Sharples
[Book] Andrews, Arthur. 1921. Australasian Tokens and Coins., No. 26
[Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand., No. 17/2