The Numismatic Bibliomania Society


The E-Sylum: Volume 25, Number 22, May 29, 2022, Article 25


Richard Lobel of CoinCraft in London submitted these remembrances about the Paget Models. Thank you! -Editor

  Paget Model 25 New Pence Goldine Spink Auction 21171 Lot 9123
Lot 9123

I saw in a recent Spink E-Auction a listing of the T H Paget reverse model of the 25 New Pence for the Silver Wedding of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. I found it long and interesting and to be honest on many parts incorrect. But what the collecting fraternity has grown to accept, not the actual facts. I know it was wrong because I struck them!

This is the true story of the Paget Models for Great Britain (Unusual World Coins by Colin Bruce published by Krause X-TS1), New Zealand (unlisted, as we didn't figure out to later that it could only be New Zealand), Bolivia (X-TS1), Uruguay (X-TS1, 2, 3 4) (one of these metals does not exist) and British Caribbean Territories (X TS1). At the time I tried to do everything correctly, but over the years the truth has become obscured, as it has been with many private issues. I am going to try and straighten everything out with this piece; they are still very collectable pieces but the information is generally wrong. They were engraved by Paget just not struck by Paget or the Royal Mint.

Years ago Christies Auction House in London offered five large plasters of pieces that T H Paget had made as presentation purposes for new coins. But they were not accepted. I bought all five plasters at that auction and as usual, just put them in one of our vault rooms and forgot about them. A number of years later I decided that it would be most interesting to do something with the plasters. I spoke with Raphael Maklouf who owned Tower Mint. He had struck a lot of coins and medals for us over the years. Business was rather slow for him, at the time and as we had done a lot of business together, he agreed to make dies from the plasters and strike crownsized pieces for me. After all his machinery was on hand to make dies from plasters, that was of course was one of his main businesses at the time.

  Paget Model 25 New Pence Goldine Spink Auction 21171 Lot 9121
Lot 9121

To insure that there would be no fear of anyone thinking they were struck by the Mint, I insisted that the reverse read just ‘Model'. He made the dies and struck the pieces as per my requirements. He supplied the goldine and the cupro-nickel blanks and I supplied the silver blanks. A couple of years before I had purchased 999 silver blanks from a silver manufacturer in the United States. It was cheaper to buy blanks from them than to buy blanks in this country. I had them in stock for a couple of years and it felt it was the quickest way to use up stock that we had on hand was to strike something. I struck 150 of each in cupro-nickel, 150 in goldine and 50 in 999 fine silver.

I sold the entire mintage of the Prince Philip 25 New Pence, excluding only a small number of trials, to the late Richard Nelson of the Money Company in California. I sold the entire George VI New Zealand Dollar issue to the late Bob Roberts of M. R. Roberts of Sydney Australia. The Bolivia and Uruguay I sold parts to a number of dealers, to be honest it was a long time and millions of sales ago. The British Caribbean issue never really sold as it was an error, a tiny coin blown up on a very large planchet. Over the years I have sold them to my own collectors one by one, today we have a very few of the base metal pieces left. And I think we sell them for about £ 24 each. We use to charge less, but the smaller the number we have in stock the more we ask for what remains.

The Royal Mint did speak to Raphael and asked him about these pieces. He denied knowing anything about them. The Mint said that's what they thought because of the strange mixture of the silver, it was too high quality and not a metal he used. Raphael then called me all in a tizzy. He said that he had taken the dies and blasted the design off. I objected as I had paid for the dies but was done was done. Shortly afterwards we stopped dealing with Tower Mint entirely. We found that they had been using other of our dies that we had paid for and owned, to strike medals that they were then selling through stately homes.

Our pieces were struck as samples or models there was never any intention to mislead the collectors. What the people did with the pieces they bought was beyond my control. They are beautiful pieces and they were designed and engraved by Paget only they were struck by Richard Lobel. I find that things I have struck over the years have become more accepted to collectors as time goes by. In the old days perhaps more private issues were struck than today, but they have had time to age, mature and be appreciated.

In 1965 I struck as part of a 3 way partnership, my first coin, the 1965 Cuban Souvenir Peso. They were struck in silver by ‘Louis of Fulton St' and I believe the retail price was $12.50 and the wholesale per hundred was $7.50. A very serious friend / collector in NYC tells me that they are now being slabbed and selling for as much as $1,000 at auction. Now about the other 350 items I have struck...

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Wayne Homren, Editor

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