1773 Virginia Halfpenny. Newman 6-X. No Period After GEORGIVS, 8 Harp Strings. MS-63 RB (NGC).
Light gray-brown patina, both sides also exhibit plenty of original if slightly faded pinkish-red luster that shines forth nicely as the surfaces rotate under a light. This is a well struck, outwardly smooth example that would fit nicely in a collection of Colonial-era type coinage. The 1773 Virginia halfpennies are an official coinage for Virginia that came to the colony for disbursal and commercial use as outlined in the colony's charter; Virginia was the only colony with a coinage clause built into its charter and in 1773 they had the Tower Mint in London strike up "some five tons" of the issue according to Breen (Encyclopedia, 1988). The vast majority of Mint State survivors of the type owe their existence to a hoard found in a keg near Richmond, Virginia just prior to the Civil War. This keg passed to Mendes I. Cohen (1796-1879), a well-known numismatist of the mid-19th century. Some 2,200 or so pieces were later sold by Cohen's descendants in 1929 -- Wayte Raymond was the dealer who dispersed most of the hoard to collectors of his era.
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