Early American Coins Were Discovered During Natural Finds Hunt
Early American Colonial Coin - Pine Tree Shilling
Jerry Burr, the founder of NMDL CASH Bash Competition, dug up a 1652 Pine Tree Shilling on Thursday evening! I saw the coin, a fantastic find! Too bad it was also very worn out, not many details of the design visible. Still the discovery of the rare American Colonial coin set up everyone's enthusiasm on the highest level.
A week before the Cash Bash weekend, David from Connecticut found the same coin, but in excellent condition, in the vicinity of the camp. I am sure that many detectorists who found about David's find on the Forum, were inspired to come to the event and try their luck despite the rain. I was one of them as it had been my dream to find such an Early American coin!
1652 Pine Tree Shilling Found By Dave In Connecticut
According to The Official Red Book of United States Coins, Pine Tree Shillings were minted in Boston, Massachusetts, from 1667 until 1682. They all carried the date of 1652 as did almost all of the Willow Tree (1653-1660), Oak Tree (1660-1667), and Pine Tree coinages minted in Massachusetts. The reason for this was that the government in England could be kept in the dark about the growing wealth of the colony.
Threepence, Sixpence and Shilling coins were all dated 1652 which was the year that the silver coins, the "New England Coinage," were first minted. Pine Tree Shillings were struck on large and small planchets. Here is a picture of a Pine Tree Shilling struck on small planchet (1675-1682).
Pine Tree Shilling, Small Planchet
Also a couple of Vermont coppers were recovered, but they were in too bad condition to take a picture. So, here is a picture, I believe, of the coin that was dug up at the farm.
Anyway, I had a good day on Friday as I met with many familiar faces, people I knew from previous hunts and people from the forums, met new faces, and made new friends and acquaintances. Detectorists would gather spontaneously in small groups everywhere on the property, strike up conversations, share their experiences with others, and tell their treasure hunting stories from the past year of metal detecting.
Some people brought their best finds to show and there was a lot of excitement and "WOWs!" in the air. Then there was a bon fire and even though everyone was tired from digging all day, the story-telling went into the late night.