My question last week about cut U.S. coins prompted John Kraljevich to send the following images. Thanks! -Editor
Half of an 1805 Quarter
Quarter of a 1795 Half Dime
David Ganz writes:
It's unlikely that coinage would be chopped into bits after 1874 because of title 18 (criminal laws) . The 1874 Revised Statutes
(SECTION 5459) PROVIDES THAT ANYIONE WHO "DEFACESS MUTILATES, IMPAIRS, DIMINISHES..." ANY us COIN MAY BE FINED and imprisoned,
(See my book on US Coinage Laws before 1894 (Bowers, 1990), p. 58.
Just a non sequitur thought that is tangentially related: my book on bicentennnial coinage, published in 1976 which originally
appeared as a multi-part series in The Numismatist) was called Fourteen Bits because my publisher (3 Continents Press) was
so fascinated by the thought of breaking off a portion of the currency to get change.
QUICK QUIZ: How exactly does "Fourteen bits" represent the 1976 bicentennial coinage? I always thought this was a fun title for
a book, but only the subtitle reveals the topic to those not in-the-know: Fourteen Bits, the Story of America's Bicentennial
Coinage 1976: A Legal and Legislative History of 31 U. S. C. SEC. 324 D-I. -Editor
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
NEW BOOK: THE COINS OF FORT ATKINSON
Wayne Homren, Editor
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