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April 19, 2014


1652 Pine Tree Shilling PCGS MS61 Secure, CAC - $33,500.00

1652 Pine Tree Shilling PCGS MS61 Secure, CAC. All Pine Tree coinage is rare. In their population reports, both major grading services show that all No Pellets at Trunk Large Planchet shillings are rare in all grades. In Mint State condition, Large Planchet Pine Tree shillings are exceptionally rare. PCGS has certified only 2 Large Planchet, No Pellets coins at the Mint State 61grade level, this is one of those 2 specimens or is it just a duplication?

In Mint State condition, Large Planchet Pine Tree shillings are exceptionally rare. PCGS has certified only 2 "Large Planchet, No Pellets" coins at the Mint State 61 grade level. This is one of those 2 specimens.

Please contact me by email or telephone 1-800-624-1870 to reserve this great coin.

This Mint State, Large Planchet 1652 Pine Tree Shilling comes in a Secure PCGS holder. The Secure designation attests to the coin’s authenticity and originality. The CAC sticker indicates that the coin is a premium quality piece that fully deserves the assigned grade. The coin is a light, silvery gray in color with touches of gold, light lilac, rose, and green, further confirming the coin’s originality. The surfaces are hard and glossy with minimal abrasion marks, as expected for a Mint State piece. The coin, which was struck on a large planchet, was clipped and weighs 4.699 grams. It was well struck for the issue with all the inscriptions completely legible and a nearly complete center circle of beads on both sides. The design is perfectly centered on both sides, and only part of some letters and some of the border beads are missing because of the clips.

The obverse of the coin shows a tree centered within a circle of beads. It is surrounded by the inscription MASATHVSETS followed by IN. The reverse shows the date, 1652, and the denomination, XII, encircled by beads. The surrounding inscription is NEW ENGLAND. AN. DOM. An outer circle of beads is at the edge of the periphery.

The Pine Tree coins were originally called “Boston” or “Bay Shillings.” Many varieties exist because the period of production was extended from 1662 to 1682. During this time the handmade dies wore out or broke easily, requiring constant replacement. There were two types of Pine Tree issues the large and small. Minted in quantity, the Large Shillings include AN DOM in the reverse legend. The Small Shillings use AN DO instead.

In order to keep money in the colony, a law was passed in 1654 prohibiting exportation of more than twenty shillings upon penalty of total forfeiture. This law was needed because Massachusetts colonists traded with people of other colonies, and the coinage was constantly being depleted.

The coins were all dated 1652, during the time that the Puritans took power from the English Royalists and created the Commonwealth of England, which was established in 1649. Oliver Cromwell defeated the Royalist coalition and ruled as Lord Protector of England from 1653 to 1658. He left the American colonies for the most part to their own affairs, only intervening when his fellow Puritans tried to usurp control of the Maryland Colony. During this time, the colonists were free to coin their own money. The monarchy was restored in 1660, but the colony continued to mint coins, an act of treason. To ameliorate this situation, Massachusetts Puritans sent King Charles II presents, one of which was a shipload of masts for the Royal Navy. Even using the 1652 date could not hide evidence of coinage in the colonies after the Restoration. Political gifts were given from time to time to the King and to the Massachusetts government by the mint masters and by the Court to the King. For example in 1667 the mint masters paid the public treasury forty pounds and ten pounds for the next seven years, and in 1677: “It is ordered that the Treasurere doe forthwith prouide ten barrels of Cranburyes, two hogsheads of speciall Good Sampe, and three thousand of Cod fish, to be sent to our messengers, by them to be presented to his Majesty as a present from this Court.”

Many Pine Tree coins show teeth marks and evidence of bending, souvenirs of the Salem witchcraft problems of 1692. A bent coin would ward off witches’ spells. The smaller shillings were not bent as often as the large ones because they were made from thicker flans and could not be bent easily. However, they were often counterfeited, shaved, and clipped.

In 1684, King James II revoked the charter of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. A police state was established in the province. Later a new governor was sent by the authorities to restore the conditions that existed prior to 1652. Sir Edmond Andros was the individual sent by the King. He went to Hartford, Connecticut and tried to seize the colony’s charter, but it was hidden in a tree. It became known as the Charter Oak, which is pictured on the Connecticut State Quarter of 1999. When James II was ousted, Andros was shipped back to England.

Although the Pine Tree Shillings were replaced by paper currency that became severely devalued, the Pine Tree coinage remained the preferred means of exchange along with Mexican dollars.

The coins of Massachusetts show the beginning of a tradition of opposition to interference by England in internal affairs of the colonies. They represent the first step towards the Boston Tea Party, the Sons of Liberty, and the Revolution that would follow.


NEW COINS ADDED - (The week of 4/18/2014)

1937 10C PCGS Proof 67 CAC

1883 $3 PCGS Proof 63 CAMEO

1876-CC $10 PCGS AU53

1866 Seated S$1 With Motto NGC MS62 PL

1849-O G$1 PCGS MS63

1855-S $5 NGC AU55

1848-C $5 NGC AU55

1851-O Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS66

1839 Seated 50C NGC MS66

1839 Seated 50C PCGS MS64

1841-O Seated 50C PCGS MS63

1842 Seated Liberty 50C PCGS MS65

1846 Seated 50C PCGS Proof 63 CAC

1851 Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS65

1853 Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS65

1856 Seated Liberty 50c NGC Proof 66

1856-O Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS66

1857 Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS65

1859 Seated Liberty 50C Proof 65 CAC

1860-O Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS66

1861 Seated Liberty 50C NGC Proof 65

1865 Seated Liberty 50C PCGS PR66+ CAM

1866 Seated Liberty 50C NGC MS65

1892-O Barber 50C PCGS MS65

1893-S Barber 50C NGC MS65

1897 Barber 50C NGC Proof 66 CAMEO

1897-O Barber 50C PCGS MS66

1898 Barber 50C PCGS Proof 67

1898 Barber 50C NGC Proof 67 ULTRA CAMEO

1899 Barber 50C PCGS Proof 68 CAMEO

1899-O Barber 50C PCGS MS65 CAC


Very Truly Yours,

Tom Pilitowski
Toll Free:
Email: TomPilitowski@yahoo.com


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