Steve Bishop submitted this great research piece on the 1856 large cent counterstamp pictured in Tom Kays' article on our Nummis Nova dinner this week. Thanks!! Nice work.
AN 1856 COUNTERSTAMPED LARGE CENT – THE REST OF THE STORY
BY STEVE BISHOP
Numismatics can open up a window to the past, and in certain circumstances, reveal a story
behind a numismatic item. I recently bought a counterstamped 1856 large cent on eBay from Steve
Hayden. It features a beautifully detailed eagle counterstamp along with the legend
There is no indication of the issuer of this counterstamp, but researcher and eBayer Bill Groom (thanks, Bill!) sent the following comment along with two images of a trunk lock. "Conrad Liebrich was a locksmith and inventor from Philadelphia. As you may see by the attached pics, the coin's c/s matches that on his brass lock(s)."
CONRAD LIEBRICH BRASS TRUCK LOCK – KEY INSERTED
CONRAD LIEBRICH BRASS TRUCK LOCK – KEY REMOVED
Star Lock Works, founded in 1836 by Conrad Liebrich in Philadelphia, made a variety of nice brass trunk locks for trunk makers. McElroy's Philadelphia City Directory for 1863, listed Conrad Liebrich at 110 S. 8th Street as a lock manufacturer, with his residence listed at 128 S. 8th Street. The same business and home addresses also list Philip Liebrich, presumably his son.
The brass trunk lock has the name C. LIEBRICH on the left side, PHILADA on the right side and PATENTED MAY 1854 on the top. The lock is a 2-piece set, the top part fits into the bottom and locks with a key. When the key is removed from the lock a brass sliding door moves to the right (spring loaded) and covers or hides the key hole from view.
The patent referred to on the lock and the counterstamped 1856 large cent is U.S. Pat. No. 10,862, issued May 2, 1854. As shown in Figs. 3 and 4 of the patent drawing shown below, the lock consists of an upper body part A hinged to a lower hasp part B. The key feature of the claimed invention, as set forth in Claim 1, is the provision of a leaf spring between the body part A and the lower hasp part B. Upon turning the key to release the hasp, the spring automatically projects the hasp outwardly from its opening in the lower lock plate attached to the wall of the trunk. The spring also keeps the hasp elevated away from the wall of the trunk so that it is easy to open.
As a professional patent searcher and fan of the history of technology, this counterstamped coin is of particular interest to me. It is a prime example of how a numismatic item can have a hidden story that may be revealed by a little digging.
THE BOOK BAZARRE
AUTHORS AND PUBLISHERS
: Are your books carried by Wizard Coin Supply? If not, contact us via www.WizardCoinSupply.com
Wayne Homren, Editor
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.
To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor
at this address: email@example.com
To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 1998 - 2023 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.
NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster