October 28, 2010

USA, 1840-1860s: Counterfeit Gold

1848: 1840s?

Platina in counterfeit Gold Eagles became a problem in the late 1850s. If "fifty or sixty dollars in a package of five thousand" means $5,000 (5 or 6 coins per 500 Eagles), then perhaps 1% of the Gold coinage was spoiled.

The $10 Eagle was 0.5375 troy ounces (16.72 g) per $10 coin, with 0.48375 troy ounces (15.05 g) of pure Gold @ $18.604/oz. The coin weight was reduced 0.2956 troy ounces (~142 gr, or 9.194 g) with the Platina weight just abit more (9.655 g?) ; the resulting coin was just 35% pure Gold with an intrinsic value of $3.50.

Citation: The Globe, Huntingdon, PA 6-13-1860:

1856/7: Platinum was the best metal to employ in Gold Counterfeits.


 c. 1870: 

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