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Token - 1 Penny, Murray & Christie, Grocers, Ironmongers & Produce Merchants, Castlemaine, Victoria, Australia, 1862 Numismatics Reg. No: NU 4157

Copper One Penny Token, minted by Thomas Stokes, Melbourne. Issued by Murray & Christie, Castlemaine, 1862. In 1857 Murray joined Christie's business as a salesman. In 1861 they built another more substantial building on the same site. Unfortunately for them, when business slowed in Castlemaine in 1865 they had invested in the town heavily, purchasing a flour mill. They speculated in a range of pastoral, mining and property investments, all to their loss. David Murray became insolvent in 1871. Both men left Castlemaine in 1875, having speculated without much gain.

Previous Collections:Hon. William M.K. Vale
A round copper token (34 mm diameter). The token features the name, address and business of the issuer: Murray and Christie, Castlemaine grocers, ironmongers, china and glassware merchants.
Acquisition Information:
Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), 1976
Discipline: Numismatics
Dimensions: 34 mm (Diameter)
Weight: 14.644 g (Weight)

More information

Tagged with: glass, grocers, ironmongers, retail trade, retailing
Themes this item is part of: Murray & Christie, Grocers, Castlemaine, Victoria, Numismatics & Philately Collection, Working Life & Trades Collection, Stokes & Son, Medal Makers, Melbourne, Victoria & Sydney, New South Wales, William Mountford Kinsey Vale, Politican (1833-1895)
Primary Classification: TRADE TOKENS
Secondary Classification: Australia - Victoria
Tertiary Classification: working strikes
Series: Trade Tokens
DateEra: 1862 AD
Denomination: 1 Penny
Obverse Description: Legend in four lines, the first and last curved, MURRAY / AND / CHRISTIE / - / CASTLEMAINE
border of 113 beads
Reverse Description: Legend in five straight lines, GROCERS / IRONMONGERS / CHINA & GLASS / WARE / MERCHANTS
This is one of two froms of this type, on this the letter R of GROCERS is above the space between the letters GE of IRONMONGERS. Border of 114 beads
Edge Description: Plain
Shape: round
Material: Copper
Issued By: Murray & Christie, Castlemaine, Victoria, Australia, 1862
Mint: Stokes (Mint), Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1862
Previous Collection: Honourable William Vale
References: -Gardner, F.. 'Trade tokens and the firms who issued them.' The Australian Storekeepers and Traders Journal. 31 January 1911: pp.14 - 15; -PROV online index to Unassisted Immigration. Series VPRS 7666; -Sharples, J.. 'Catalogue of Victorian Trade Tokens.' Journal of the Numismatic Association of Australia. Vol. 7. December 1993: pp. 21 - 22; -Castlemaine Directory, Almanac and book of general information for 1856, being leap year, published by Chas. E. Glass; -Advertisement. Castlemaine Directory for 1856, published by Chas. E. Glass; -Castlemaine Directory and book of general information, including Glass' model calendar for the two years 1862 and 1863. pub. Chas. E. Glass; Sandhurst, Castlemaine & Echuca directory for 1865 - 1866. Butler and Stevens; -Hope, John, History of Murray and Christie. Unpublished MSS. 2005. 2pps.

The company of Murray and Christie arranged with Stokes for the manufacture of their trade tokens in 1862. There was some trouble with both the obverse and reverse dies during the production. The first reverse die cracked and was replaced, with the two dies being identified in standard catalogues by the small differences in the relative positions of the lettering, a simple test involves the length of the word GROCERS and the postion of the letter R in GROCERS above the letters in the word IRONMONGERS:
1 20.5 mm GE
2 19.4 G
The obverse die is in the museum collection (NU 35771) as is Reverse 2 (NU 35772). Although the working face of the obverse is undamaged the main body of the die is surrounded by a series of deep indentations apparently made while trying to fix the die in the press. This is the only die in the collection so damaged and suggests that the steel was soft. This could explain the existance of the trade tokens made with Reverse 2 and Stokes stock die (Sharples Arms 6 = Heyde Arms 5), it may have become impossible to clamp the obverse die in the press so the order was filled with a stock die - the use of two reverses creating a trade token without the issuers name.
  1. [Book], Dr Arthur Andrews, Australasian Tokens and Coins, Trustees of the Mitchell Library, Sydney, Sydney, 1921, No. 395
  2. [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., V. 24
  3. [Book], Dion Skinner - Renniks & Co Pty Ltd, Gilbert Heyde, Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand, 1967, No. 191/1

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