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Great Britain: 2020 gold 100-pounds, Mayflower 400th Anniversary commemorative, first day of issue


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Posted (edited)

 

I bought this recently to add to my bullion stack (though I did pay a bit above spot for it). I thought it was nice for a modern design. It’s also a standard Deep Cameo proof on one side, and a reverse proof on the other. 

Also, I’m supposedly a descendant of William Bradford, the Pilgrim governor, so the theme is fun. My maternal grandmother was a member of the Mayflower Society.


Great Britain: 2020 gold 100-pounds, Mayflower 400th Anniversary commemorative, first day of issue

Numista-296804.

NGC PR69 UCAM, cert. #6039444-048.

.9999 fine gold, 1.0 Troy ounce. 500 minted.

Ex-Great Collections auction, item #1559868, 12 May 2024.


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Edited by lordmarcovan
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Posted (edited)

That cameo is beautiful! 

Supposedly, I'm also descended from - or at least related to - William Bradford. Long-lost cousins, eh? 😉

Edited by CPK
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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, CPK said:

That cameo is beautiful! 

Supposedly, I'm also descended from William Bradford. Long-lost cousins, eh? 😉

Nice to see you, ‘Cuz!  🙂

(After this many generations, I reckon there are a lot of us.)

Family lore had it that my maternal grandmother owned a silver candlestick that had belonged to William Bradford.  Given how well-to-do she was, and the quality of some of the other heirlooms, I reckon that’s semi-plausible, though I never saw the candlestick in question.  So maybe it was real and maybe it was mythical.

While we’re at it, here’s another coin from my collection which depicts our common ancestor!

IMG_8376.jpeg.831e0db4fabf95b08d61128b1587dddf.jpeg
IMG_8377.jpeg.8e6fa22c5357f458c8f6bb5bb23adc4c.jpeg

IMG_8378.jpeg.7d6f7dab6ca93b820b0186ee34d895e9.jpeg

 

Edited by lordmarcovan
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Posted (edited)

These are as fun as they are cool, @lordmarcovan and @CPK.  Right, including your genealogical backgrounds.

I can promise both of you, for English genealogy in the (future) US, New England is the perfect storm.  No, in the best sense of the term, thanks mainly to various accidents of history.  A convergence of relative masses of extant primary documentation, and a tradition of correspondingly responsible, Yes, Responsible research, easily going back to the 19th century.  @lordmarcovan, you have my solemn word and bond, the Mayflower Society knew what they were about, yes, as of your maternal grandmother.  When you refer to it as 'supposed' descent, it's like, word out: you have Zero obligation to defer to the mountains of subsequent American genealogy online, composed mainly of wishful thinking.  Methodology effectively replaced by technology; Not a Good Trade.  Back to responsible methodology, there are parallels in English local and regional histories, easily back to the early 19th century.  A surprising number of which managed to find their way into print.  For one thing, a lot of the people who were doing this stuff, as early as that, were in the legal profession, and commensurately fluent in Latin.  Primary sources, back to the middle ages?  Not a problem.  Back to transliterating the manuscripts --and, thank you, they were better at that than I, for one, will ever be.

...From a relentlessly New England WASP dad (with family who were into this long before I was ...including field research in graveyards, never mind stuff in manuscript), I get descent from a small handful of Mayflower families. 

(Honestly, if you're descended from one, you're likely descended from a few more.  The Pilgrims were in Plymouth for a full decade before the Puritans even showed up in Massachusetts Bay.  Right, and they brought their families with them.  A lot of them wound up being lineally related to a lot of the rest of them.) 

Not one of them is remotely as distinguished as William Bradford.  In fact, my favorite has to be one of the 'Strangers' (vs. Saints') ...mostly since, where ancestors are concerned, I always gravitate toward the antiheroes.  That's Stephen Hopkins, who had been shipwrecked on Bermuda a decade before.  The incident inspired Shakespeare's The Tempest, and there's the merest chance that the 'drunken, boisterous' character Stephano was loosely based on Hopkins.  Hopkins also staged a mutiny in the aftermath, maybe giving Shakespeare further plot material.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephano_(The_Tempest) 

Here are a couple of shameless (well, close enough) reposts, both of James I, during his English reign, 1603-25.  ...Right, leading the Pilgrims and Puritans to opt for the alternate, Geneva translation of the Bible.  Sorry for the size of the .jpgs.

image.png.faf889193e8a522e3519bb77310d2aa0.png

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Shilling; first, thistle mintmark --Scotland! get it? :<}  2nd bust, c. 1603-4.  Spink (2015) 2646.

From later in the reign --thank you, much more contemporaneous to the Mayflower-- the other one is a counter.  Effectively a modernization of later medieval jettons, for accounting (...?). 

image.jpeg.430116e419d4c21138d8f4a9095b4b3b.jpeg

image.jpeg.ca15abc14559ccb58fc80e2c7905133b.jpeg

This one, the (Edit: second) main type of three, has been dated c. 1620-1625.  You're cordially invited to look at the initial footnote (2nd and 3rd paragraphs) of this typically formidable OP by @DonnaML.  

 

This verges on romanticization, but in terms of militance (this time, specifically toward local First Nations), I still want to think of the Pilgrims as the hippies, with the Puritans more like the SDS.  Yes, the Pilgrims were eventually drawn into the Indian wars, but they didn't land on Plymouth Rock with that intention preemptively in mind.  ...And unlike the Puritans, they're characterized as preferrng 'Lincoln green' to the stereotypical Puritan black.  ...Generally easier to like, of the two.

Edited by JeandAcre
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The Dutch also founded New Amsterdam in 1624, later to become New York in 1664.  With them came the lion daalder, though I would suspect that it was likely traded in North America before their arrival.

Friesland, lion daalder, 1625.

Davenport 8815

27.12 grams 

D-CameraFrieslandliondaalder162527.12gDav88154-11-22.jpg.0dbedfa280a376d1c6d55b8a2ed6d4a8.jpg

 

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15 hours ago, lordmarcovan said:

Nice to see you, ‘Cuz!  🙂

(After this many generations, I reckon there are a lot of us.)

Family lore had it that my maternal grandmother owned a silver candlestick that had belonged to William Bradford.  Given how well-to-do she was, and the quality of some of the other heirlooms, I reckon that’s semi-plausible, though I never saw the candlestick in question.  So maybe it was real and maybe it was mythical.

While we’re at it, here’s another coin from my collection which depicts our common ancestor!

IMG_8376.jpeg.831e0db4fabf95b08d61128b1587dddf.jpeg
IMG_8377.jpeg.8e6fa22c5357f458c8f6bb5bb23adc4c.jpeg

IMG_8378.jpeg.7d6f7dab6ca93b820b0186ee34d895e9.jpeg

 

I used to be really passionate about collecting Early Commemorative half dollars. I’m surprised I never bought myself a Pilgrim half dollar considering it’s one of the more common types

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3 hours ago, MrMonkeySwag96 said:

I used to be really passionate about collecting Early Commemorative half dollars. I’m surprised I never bought myself a Pilgrim half dollar considering it’s one of the more common types

You can see why it was the “must have” type for me.

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The following is my opinion only.

The 100 pound gold piece is very impressive, and I would love to own one.   The coin is obviously crafted with great care.  The production values and quality control are obviously perfect.  The version of the Mayflower is a successful design, in my opinion, which is lively and suggests the ship is going to sail right out of the coin.  

The Pilgrim half dollar is a much impressive coin.  Governor Bradford with his slightly downcast eyes and oversized Bible appears as an particular individual, and furthermore the artist has successfully suggested this is a reverent individual, a pious man.  The Mayflower on the reverse has sails which look as if they are contending with the wind;  the ship has a deck, spars, ratlines……one gets the sense that if you could “zoom in”  you would see the Pilgrims walking the deck, the sailors working the ship.  You could picture Pilgrim John Howland falling overboard from this ship, and (providentially, the Pilgrims would say,)  catching a line trailing from the back of the ship to be hauled back aboard and saved from drowning.  

The half dollar is a coin which commemorates an actual event, and a real individual, which transpired and who existed in a particular place and time which we are invited to remember.  

The Mayflower on the gold piece is more like a logo.  No one could imagine “zooming in” on it.  However much you magnified it, it would be the same.   It is a generic ship stripped of detail, and has no individuality.  The idea of a crew on it seems unimportant, never mind a specific crew and Pilgrim passengers.  It is as stylized and removed from reality as the waves at the bow.

The British coin also suffers from the necessity of placing Queen Elizabeth on the obverse, who had nothing to do with the events of 1620 thus adding nothing to a coin commemorating them.  But even given this handicap, the coin is an unsuccessful effort.  One could change the dates 1620 - 2020 to 1522 - 2022, and the coin would serve equally well to commemorate Magellan’s circumnavigation of the world.  That seems to me to be a fatal defect.  

Given the broad canvas a large coin affords the designer, the malleability of gold, the freedom a non-circulating coin has from the strictures imposed by striking coins for commerce (stackability, etc,)  the assistance of a modern-day Augustus Saint-Gaudens should have been sought.  But even lacking this, a generic and de-individualized design on a commemorative coin makes no sense.  It is a rejection of the very raison d’être for commemoratives.  

I will conclude my remarks with this image, which I suspect may have inspired the designer.  

 

image.jpeg.3c9d23290ee21cb0bf9b83291e8f17b3.jpeg

 

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14 hours ago, robinjojo said:

The Dutch also founded New Amsterdam in 1624, later to become New York in 1664.  With them came the lion daalder, though I would suspect that it was likely traded in North America before their arrival.

Friesland, lion daalder, 1625.

Davenport 8815

27.12 grams 

D-CameraFrieslandliondaalder162527.12gDav88154-11-22.jpg.0dbedfa280a376d1c6d55b8a2ed6d4a8.jpg

 

Very cool, @robinjojo.   I have to especially appreciate your pointing out how early the Dutch settled New Amsterdam.  ...Right, where does, um, the surname Roosevelt come from? 

Have to love those daalders (bucket-list material ...should I live so long).  Your example is the best I can remember seeing online.

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12 hours ago, MrMonkeySwag96 said:

I used to be really passionate about collecting Early Commemorative half dollars. I’m surprised I never bought myself a Pilgrim half dollar considering it’s one of the more common types

Very impressive collection, @MrMonkeySwag96.  ...I can only wish that, along with Booker T. Washington and G. W. Carver, there was one commemorating W. E. B. Dubois.  ...Except, he was still alive as late as 1963.  Guess that rules him out as a candidate for the series.  ...But if there was one, I'd be saving my nickels! 

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Awesomeness on the 100 pounder AV, @lordmarcovan. Very nice.  Gold is always good.  LOL, I wonder if Britain was celebrating the LEAVING of those pesky folks from THEIR shores!  🙂

 

Funny you put this up.  My daughter is doing some extensive research into my and my ex-wife's family tree.  Found out that, yep, I am descendent from the Mayflower clans, and that my family were one of the very few NON-Puritan folks that came over on that ship.  Warner, I believe was the guys name.  

I don't have any coins from this time period, so sorry I cannot contribute...

Oh, wait... here is something from 1650...

image.jpeg.2890681121d6db0e0e730f2f97d394c0.jpeg

Egypt 15th Dyn Hyksos 1650-1550 BCE     Scarab Sobek kneel R 16x12mm ex DeVries Collctn Flinders Petrie 942-943     Plate XIV

 

OOOOPS!  Sorry that is 1650 BCE... wrong direction.  😄

 

image.png.ffc6e9b15787ee9b7e4ffd57e1d08613.png

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, JeandAcre said:

Very cool, @robinjojo.   I have to especially appreciate your pointing out how early the Dutch settled New Amsterdam.  ...Right, where does, um, the surname Roosevelt come from? 

Have to love those daalders (bucket-list material ...should I live so long).  Your example is the best I can remember seeing online.

Thank you.  Friesland lion daalders are mostly very crude, probably the crudest coins produced from all the provincial and civic mints.  The coin I posted is typical.  

Here's a much more pleasing coin visually.  It is from Friesland, dated 1600, with the old style obverse legend, with the ending "Friesland of Hollard."  This style lasted from the late 1500s to the first few years of the 1600s, when it was changed, omitting the "of Holland" part, as well as a few other changes.  The earlier coinage of this mint tends to be nicer compared to the later issues; they also tend to be the most frequently available, though the coin below is quite rare.

Friesland, lion daalder, (1)600.  Purchased from Ritter in 2022.

Davenport 8815

27.2 grams

D-CameraFrieslandliondaalder160027.2gDav8815Ritter4-8-22.jpg.33d179322a3d0a52b2340074f9d018f1.jpg

 

Coincidentally, an article appeared today in the Guardian related to the Dutch establishment and settling of New Amsterdam:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/article/2024/may/15/netherlands-reparations-new-york-lenape-native-american

 

 

Edited by robinjojo
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10 hours ago, MrMonkeySwag96 said:

A few years ago, I posted a YouTube video of my entire collection of Early Commemorative half dollars:

 

I've never been seriously tempted to collect U.S. coins, but I do have to say that if I ever were, some of the series of commemorative half-dollars issued from 1892-1954 would probably appeal to me the most. I certainly never saw any of them in circulation, even as a child in the 1960s. It was an unusual event to find a half-dollar of any kind. Almost as unusual as ever seeing a 2-dollar bill!

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Alegandron said:

Awesomeness on the 100 pounder AV, @lordmarcovan. Very nice.  Gold is always good.  LOL, I wonder if Britain was celebrating the LEAVING of those pesky folks from THEIR shores!  🙂

 

Funny you put this up.  My daughter is doing some extensive research into my and my ex-wife's family tree.  Found out that, yep, I am descendent from the Mayflower clans, and that my family were one of the very few NON-Puritan folks that came over on that ship.  Warner, I believe was the guys name.  

I don't have any coins from this time period, so sorry I cannot contribute...

Oh, wait... here is something from 1650...

image.jpeg.2890681121d6db0e0e730f2f97d394c0.jpeg

Egypt 15th Dyn Hyksos 1650-1550 BCE     Scarab Sobek kneel R 16x12mm ex DeVries Collctn Flinders Petrie 942-943     Plate XIV

 

OOOOPS!  Sorry that is 1650 BCE... wrong direction.  😄

 

image.png.ffc6e9b15787ee9b7e4ffd57e1d08613.png

 

@Alegandron, your ancestor has to be Richard Warren (c. 1580-1628).  (Cf. the full list of passengers in Willison, Saints and Strangers (1945); Philbrick, Mayflower (2006), passim.) 

And there were Plenty of 'strangers' along with the 'saints.'  The Pilgrims had to book the ship from an English 'venture company' (along the lines of the sponsors of the earlier colony in Jamestown), who proceeded to include many of their own people onboard, in various logistical capacities.  Most of whom stayed put in (edit: OW: Not Jamestown) Plymouth.

And, Just Guess, we're Cuzzes!  :<}  I'm really needing this.

 

Edited by JeandAcre
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8 minutes ago, DonnaML said:

I've never been seriously tempted to collect U.S. coins, but I do have to say that if I ever were, some of the series of commemorative half-dollars issued from 1892-1954 would probably appeal to me the most. I certainly never saw any of them in circulation, even as a child in the 1960s. It was an unusual event to find a half-dollar of any kind. Almost as unusual as ever seeing a 2-dollar bill!

Sorry, Donna, that you never had those opportunities.  It's looking like we're of similar age (Nope, I'm showing it more than you are); but in my small town, my brother got one Franklin half dollar, c. 1951, with some sweet toning.  That was another issue that had some solid engraving talent to go with it.  All those new issues of the '20s-'40s manage at least to evoke Saint-Gaudens.  ...And, Yep, two-dollar bills.  Should've hung onto them.

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1 hour ago, JeandAcre said:

@Alegandron, your ancestor has to be Richard Warren (c. 1580-1628).  (Cf. the full list of passengers in Willison, Saints and Strangers (1945); Philbrick, Mayflower (2006), passim.) 

And there were Plenty of 'strangers' along with the 'saints.'  The Pilgrims had to book the ship from an English 'venture company' (along the lines of the sponsors of the earlier colony in Jamestown), who proceeded to include many of their own people onboard, in various logistical capacities.  Most of whom stayed put in (edit: OW: Not Jamestown) Plymouth.

And, Just Guess, we're Cuzzes!  :<}  I'm really needing this.

 

Thank you! Yes, I recall her telling me Richard Warren now. Yup, perhapswe are cuzzins!

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3 hours ago, Bailathacl said:

My wife is a direct descendent of Richard Warren (and it’s her middle name.). Quite a genetic legacy that small ship left in its wake.  

Kinda like 1-in-12 folks in Asia are descendants of Genghis Kahn...  Seems like those Puritans were purdy prolific from that small ship!  

Purdy cool that your wife is my cousin.   I understand Warren was not Puritan.

But, we all seem to be descendants of Mitochondrial Eve way back in the early stages of Human History.  So I reckon we are all cousins!  

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Just most emphatically to @Alegandron's point, there's also been a reliable consensus, for decades, that among the English population of consistently indigenous descent, half of them are descended from Edward I --an only slightly later contemporary of Ghengis Khan.  Somewhere in the mid-20th century, C. S. Lewis made the prescient observation that the difference between commoners and the aristocracy was that the latter had the (arbitrary) luxury of knowing who they were descended from.

Methodologically, this is about nothing any scarier than merging known genealogical information with statistics.  This is really not rocket science.  ...I have to think that people tend to be terrified of genealogy because, as a discipline, it's so radically alien to anything that was allowed to be a normal part of their frame of reference.  ...Yes, substantive documentation, one generation at a time.  Cf. Anne Lamott: 'Bird By Bird.' 

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