Jump to content
CoinPeople.com

Holes in coins


Mark Stilson
 Share

Recommended Posts

Just wondering about these after seeing the para in world coins. I know in the U.S. people would nail a coin in or on the wall when they built a house for luck. Some were used as jewelry. A lot of older foreign coins seem to be holed also. Same reasons?

 

Side note I know a lot of older U.S. bills have pin holes from pinning them inside a coat or clothes to hid them. Is it the same on foreign currency?

 

An example of one I believe to been hung in a house for luck since it has a square nail hole.

908529.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can tell you with banknotes that they were often stapled together even by the printer and then distributed to banks. For some places, notably France and India it is practically impossible to find earlier notes without staple holes in them. In fact only the most recent Indian note series is encountered without staple holes as the Reserve Bank of India did away with the practice and prohibited it.

 

france5.jpg

 

france10.jpg

 

Both of the above notes have the ubiquitous pinholes from staples. The one below does not, being a larger denomination they were not stapled as often - by the Banque de France, but they still were by other institutions which makes them very rare without holes:

 

france50001952.jpg

 

As for coins, with the large cents - they were a large utilitarian piece, think of them like a washer for a nail or screw - back before washers were common. Often times they were used with roofing nails for this purpose. It is not far out of the realm to suggest that they could have been holed and pegged up on a wall or something at a point in the past, or that some kid was having fun by punching holes in coins.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have several US Silver coins from the civil war era that are holed.Ive always been told the reason being was they would thread the coins on a string inside a coat pocket or similar so as not to lose it and also that silver has always been regarded as lucky,hence the jewelry idea.

Some are elaboratly etched on one side making them whats called love tokens , given from one sweatheart to another.Notably most holed US coins will be from the civil war era.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are many places in the world where coins are strung together to make elaborate neck pieces which are worn for decoration. I remember reading that in certain tribes in Africa this process was also a method of the wife controlling the finances of the family. Not sure where I read this but I believe it was on a site about Ghana and Togo.

 

Then there are the coins that were minted with holes in them. I find most of them quite attractive and interesting. I've been tempted to start a world type set of coins with holes but have never gotten around to it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have several US Silver coins from the civil war era that are holed.Ive always been told the reason being was they would thread the coins on a string inside a coat pocket or similar so as not to lose it and also that silver has always been regarded as lucky,hence the jewelry idea.

Some are elaboratly etched on one side making them whats called love tokens , given from one sweatheart to another.Notably most holed US coins will be from the civil war era.

IMG_2281.jpg

IMG_2280.jpg

 

The small hole has been filled.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mark, I suppose the tiny pin holes in older notes are from the bugs in coats and closets. I presume thats what you were referring too. Is this the true reason?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Beautiful examples Art , i always find it sad in a way to see what was obviously a pretty high grade coin holed.I have a half dime and a silver 3c both holed and it just seems tragic,i keep them though for the civil war connections,ive a couple nice civil war tokens too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mark, I suppose the tiny pin holes in older notes are from the bugs in coats and closets. I presume thats what you were referring too. Is this the true reason?

 

 

Nope, actually pinning them inside the coat for safety. Maybe if they get robbed they would hand over the contents of a wallet hoping they would not get the other money.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Many British guineas have been either holed or mounted for use as fobs with pocket watch chains.

 

The other biggie is the sovereign, not so much holed but often adapted for all kinds of jewellery, not so much watch chains these days, but rings and pendants are fairly plentiful in jewellers' shops.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That is beautiful. Some fine work done on the border. What type coin is that? I'm assuming a 10 cent.

 

1861 1/2 Dollar. The heyday of engraved love tokens in the USA was 1860's-1890's, most were made from dimes which was the average daily wage for a man. This love token represents a week's wages before the cost of the engraving is factored in. Well engraved tokens were, by and large, engraved by professionals, which added to the cost of the tokens.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1861 1/2 Dollar. The heyday of engraved love tokens in the USA was 1860's-1890's, most were made from dimes which was the average daily wage for a man. This love token represents a week's wages before the cost of the engraving is factored in. Well engraved tokens were, by and large, engraved by professionals, which added to the cost of the tokens.

 

 

I am surprised its a half. Seems like as a brooch they would pull down pretty hard.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am surprised its a half. Seems like as a brooch they would pull down pretty hard.

 

This one might shock you then.

961295.jpg

Love token E. I. S. on a counterstamped 1812 Spanish 8 Reales. Silver 41mm. Original weight would be just over 27 grams and this now weighs just 22 grams due partly to wear but mainly because of the depth of the engraved rings.

 

As you can see, it was a brooch also, but the fittings are now mostly missing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awesome coins Constanius.

 

I confess to loving holey coins. It's as though the hole makes the coin more relaxed and familiar, more historical and less precious. I have a number of holed Peace dollars and a few other common-date holed 19th century crowns (French and British) that sometimes I like to carry around in my pocket. None is worth more than $15-$20 or so. I sometimes scope FleaBay for a cheap holey Seated Dollar. Haven't found just what I want yet.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i always find it sad in a way to see what was obviously a pretty high grade coin holed.

 

Yes, but if the piece hadn't been put aside to be made into a piece of coin jewelery, what are the odds that it would had circulated until it was a slug, then lost in the great melt of 1979-80?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, but if the piece hadn't been put aside to be made into a piece of coin jewelery, what are the odds that it would had circulated until it was a slug, then lost in the great melt of 1979-80?

 

Dunno ;) Depends on when coin collecting/hoarding became popular i guess.Can you tell us more about the great melt of 79-80 please? I wasnt aware of it :ninja:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dunno ;) Depends on when coin collecting/hoarding became popular i guess.Can you tell us more about the great melt of 79-80 please? I wasnt aware of it :ninja:

 

 

Silver hit $52 an ounce. A lot of people sold everything silver they had and a lot of it went to the smelters. At that time I did hit it at $48 an ounce, but all I sold was silver bullion. There were lines going out the place I went to with people bringing coins, silverware, bullion. Still made a pretty nice chunk off it. Most of the silver I had bought at $4. I think the highest I paid for any of the silver was about $17.

 

BTW look up "Hunt Brothers silver" and it will explain out the jump better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In '79 silver and gold had huge runups in price. Silver was outrageous. It got to more than $50 an ounce if I remember correctly. Gold was as I recall like $1800. It's been a long time. I did make a few bucks but don't remember all the details. People were selling everything they could get their hands on and most was going directly to the smelters. Bags and bags of coins were lost. Probably numbering in the millions (my guess).

 

Dock is right on this one. I think gold did hit $850 and not 1800.

 

 

I know that I sold a bunch of silver -- no coins just bars. I did sell some gold coins. A few souvereigns and some Mexican stuff as I recall. Sold a bunch of jewelry too.

Edited by Art
Correct failing memory.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...