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The E-Sylum:  Volume 10, Number 19, May 13, 2007, Article 5

PHILADELPHIA ARCHEOLOGISTS FIND 1833 CORNERSTONE CENT

David Gladfelter writes: "In the stories about the President's
House archŠological dig at the southeast corner of Sixth and
Market Streets in Philadelphia, you may have overlooked a minor
numismatic discovery. This was found in the cornerstone of a
commercial building erected on top of the foundation after the
President's House was demolished in 1832.

"'Three commercial buildings then were constructed on the site,
and the excavation has uncovered their foundations as well.

"'In fact, in one of the exciting moments of the dig, archeologists
broke through the cement basement of one commercial building last
week and there, right on top of a remaining President's House
foundation wall, was an 1833 penny. It was common practice for
builders to place a properly dated coin beneath new construction
-- and the commercial building was, in fact, erected in 1833.

"'It's unbelievable that we came down right on top of that, but
it certainly dates it very accurately,' [Douglas] Mooney [,field
director of the firm conducting the dig], said. 'We couldn't believe
it when that popped up. Sometimes you imagine what would be a
really cool find, and sometimes you can't even predict.'' Article
by Stephan Salisbury, 'Dig yields some unexpected finds,' The
Philadelphia Inquirer, May 4, 2007, pages A1, A16.

"The 'penny' (read 'cent') would not have traveled far. It would
have been struck in the first year of operation of the second U. S.
Mint building at the northwest corner of Chestnut and Juniper
Streets. This site is less than a mile west of the dig site."

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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