Massachusetts Silver US Colonial Coins

Massachusetts Silver US Colonial Coins

Boston minters John Hull and Robert Saunderson began minting silver coins in 1652, the first time this had ever happened in the United States. A little "NE" for "New England" was punched on one side of the coin, while the "XII. Shillings" numeral was punched on the opposite side to symbolize the Shilling value. To avoid suffocating one other, the punches were placed at an angle.

The "struck" processes of the New England Shillings have been the focus of current discussion. According to lore, blank planchets were once made by cutting silver strips into thin strips and weighing them. It was necessary to melt down some of the lighter planchets, while trimming the edges of heavier planchets until they weighed exactly 72 grains. The coins were punched once the weight was determined to be correct. According to a recent theory, silver strips were punched repeatedly before the coins were cut out of the strip, being careful not to damage the markings along the way. Both methods resulted in a rudimentary object that isn't completely circular and isn't anything special.

While this may not seem like a big deal now, it was a big deal when these coins were first authorized. The legislation also mandated that each coin bear a minter's mark, as well as a privy. In any case, the coin's shape was later modified to round due to regulation, and no one has yet figured out the secret of the privy mark, if any were ever used. For three months in 1652, Hull and Sanderson produced New England Shillings, which were then replaced with the so-called "Willow Tree" Massachusetts Silver pieces. Because they lack a date, it's possible that some of the New England Shillings were printed without authorization at a later date.

Next to Massachusetts Silver was Willow Tree coins. Using a rudimentary procedure, the coins were made with jumbled designs and legends. All are quite rare, and they're even rarer when they're in excellent condition.

To replace Willow Tree coins, Oak Tree coins were issued. The general quality of the Oak Tree coins is far superior to that of the Willow Trees, and the complexity of the NE coinage is far greater. There are a wide range of options. The Pine Trees silver coins were the state's final issue of silver. Following their release, coin nicknames were created based on people's best estimates as to what kind of trees were featured on them.

The Pine Tree coinage is the most inexpensive and collectible of the group since it is still in circulation in far greater numbers than any of the prior issues. Again, there are a wide range of options.
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