Browse texts by category: Copper Coinage

1.

Response to a petition from Abel Slaney and partners to coin a further 700 tons of halfpence and farthings.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/301, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00589

2.

Draft of MINT00589 (Mint 19/2/301), with amendments in another hand, and signed by the Mint Board.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/420-21, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00590

3.

Unfinished variant holograph draft of MINT00589 (Mint 19/2/301).

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/434, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00591

4.

Response to petitions to coin copper from Slaney's partners Thomas Rinda [Renda], Edward Ambrose, Daniel Barton, William Shepherd, N. Shepherd and George Freeman: refer to the advice given in MINT00589 (Mint 19/2/301) to grant no more such private licences.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/411-12, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00592

5.

Application for a licence to supply the Mint with copper, with details of how best to organise the work if this is granted.

Author: Thomas Chambers

Source: MINT 19/2/384, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00593

6.

Holograph notes on parliamentary proceedings relating to copper coinage 1694-1708.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/416-17, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00595

7.

Response to a proposal by one Mr Palmer to coin 700 tons of copper.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/387, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00596

8.

'Moneyers' proposals for Coining copper'.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/426-7, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00597

9.

Clerical copy of MINT00597 (Mint 19/2/426) with an annotation by Newton.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/397, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00598

10.

In response to a Treasury order, supplies a summary of all the proposals for licences to coin copper made since the accession of Queen Anne [1702].

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/404-5, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00599

11.

Holograph draft of MINT00599 (Mint 19/2/404-5).

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/339, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00600

12.

'Considerations about the Coynage of Copper Moneys'.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/352, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00601

13.

Further holograph draft of MINT00601 (Mint 19/2/352).

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/318, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00602

14.

Another holograph draft of MINT00601 (Mint 19/2/352), adding details of the hammer test and calculations of costs.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/357, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00603

15.

'Considerations about the coinage of copper moneys'.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/354, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00604

16.

Response to John Pery's [Perry's] application to coin copper.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/306, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00605

17.

Five holograph drafts of MINT00605 (Mint 19/2/306).

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/431, 432, 438, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00606

18.

'Monyrs Proposall Humbly Offered to the Officers of Her Majts Mint for Coyning Copper'.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/396, 398, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00607

19.

Further to an oral enquiry, explains the hammer test of copper and gives a detailed account of the costs involved in coining.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/413, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00608

20.

Report on a proposal by Charles Tunnah and William Dale to coin 1,000 tons of halfpence and farthings from an artificial metal similar to gold.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/435, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00609

21.

Petitions for a licence to coin £180,000 in copper and criticises Newton's specimen copper coins as being made of inferior copper and given a high artificial gloss which will soon wear off.

Author: James Bertie

Source: MINT 19/2/385-6, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00610

22.

Report on copper coinage.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/305, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00611

23.

Holograph drafts of MINT00611 (Mint 19/2/305) with further details on processes for testing copper.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/303-4, 312-13, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00612

24.

'Particular of the charges of repairing and fitting up the Irish Mint for a coynage of Copper'.

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/401, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00613

25.

'The Price of Engines for Coyning Copper'

Author: Isaac Newton

Source: MINT 19/2/399, National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK

Newton Catalogue ID: MINT00614

[1] Treasurer

[2]

Printed in NC, 4: 408-9. Slaney's proposals are in PRO, T1/85, no. 141 (18 May 1703) and T1/86, no. 91 (6 July 1703).

[3]

Recommends returning responsibility for copper coinage exclusively to the Mint (as before 1694, when it began to be farmed out to private coiners). There is in any case no demand for such a large quantity of copper.

[4] Treasurer

[5]

Another copy of the same date in T. 1/94.8, MINT00948 (printed in NC, 4: 442-4).

[6] Isaac Newton

[7]

Calendared in NC, 7: 456 (no. X.734).

[8]

Tin farthings and halfpence, being below the intrinsic value and easily counterfeited, were recalled in 1694 and replaced with coin of English copper. Complaints against the patentees who undertook the recoinage were rejected by a Commons committee in April 1696. Copper coinage was stopped for a year 1696-7 but proposals for further stoppages 1698-9 and 1699-1700 did not pass. On 1 April 1708 the inhabitants of Southwark delivered a petition against a further new coinage, complaining that they were 'loaded with great quantities' of halfpence and farthings.

[9] Treasury

[10]

Printed in NC, 5: 81-2.

[11]

Repeats (in part verbatim) the advice given seven years earlier in MINT00589 (Mint 19/2/301) against granting private licences.

[12]

Tender to produce unmilled copper coin for a charge of 3¾d. per pound weight.

[13] Treasurer

[14]

Another copy in the same hand, dated December 1712, in Mint 1/7.56-8, MINT01135 (printed in NC, 5: 357-61 and in C. Wilson Peck, English Copper, Tin and Bronze Coins in the British Museum, 1558-1958 (London, 1964), 608-10).

[15]

Repeats the advice given in the case of each application that coining should only be undertaken by Mint commissioners answerable to the government, so that the quantity of coinage and quality of coining can be regulated, and the intrinsic value of the coins kept as close as practically possible to their face value.

[16]

[Note on dating: obviously before Queen Anne's death in 1714 and possibly related to (in the event unrealised) plans for copper coinage in 1713: see NC, 5: 416, n. 1, and Craig, NATM, 96-8.]

[17]

Printed in NC, 5: 415-6.

[18]

18-point memorandum (but point 17 is left blank). 700 tons of copper coin at most is enough for England, of which there is already over three quarters in circulation. Recommendations on quantity to be coined, type of metal used and denominations released. Coinage should be undertaken exclusively by the Mint, and should cover its own costs, with any surplus profit to be disposed of at the Queen's pleasure.

[19]

Broadly similar memorandum to MINT00601 (Mint 19/2/352), but concentrating solely on details of coinage practice and financial arrangements, without any discussion of the quantity to be coined, and with several discrepancies in the figures quoted.

[20] Treasury

[21]

[This application was referred to the Mint on 12 February 1713: CTB, 27, part 2 (1713): 118-19.]

[22]

Printed in NC, 6: 51-2 (which dates it c. December 1713 but gives no suggestion as to why Newton should be supposed to have taken ten months to reply to the referral).

[23]

There is very little demand for copper coin at present, and when it is wanted it should be made entirely in the Mint. Remarks on minting techniques and guards against counterfeiting, and advice on quantities to be coined.

[24]

Also on Mint 19/2/432: holograph draft recommendation of Charles Brattell for assay master [see MINT00081 (Mint 19/1/93)].

[25]

Tender to coin copper at a charge of 4 1/2 d. per pound weight, plus £100 expenses for machinery.

[26] Treasurer

[27]

Draft of PRO, Mint 1/7, pp. 60-61 (printed in NC, 6: 55-7).

[28] Treasury

[29]

Draft of T. 1/172.25, MINT00981 (printed in Shaw, 186-7, where it is misdated 27 January, and NC, 6: 58-9). Another draft at MINT00893(b) (Mint 19/2/334-5). Tunnah's and Dale's proposal is also in Shaw, 188-9.

[30]

Advise rejection of the bid, since such a metal is likely to be very useful to counterfeiters, there is no way of testing its intrinsic value, and nothing like 1,000 tons of extra copper money is needed anyway.

[31] Treasury

[32]

[See T. 27/21.151, MINT01046, for the Treasury's referral of this petition to the Mint, 12 March 1713/4, printed in NC, 6: 74-5 (erroneously naming the applicant as William instead of James Bertie). See also Craig, NATM, 97-8: Newton considered £120,000 adequate as the total sum of copper coin in circulation.]

[33] Treasurer

[34]

Printed in NC, 6: 75-6.

[35]

The master of the Mint has jurisdiction over what gold and silver is acceptable for Mint use: the same must apply to copper. Explains the hammer test for copper and its advantages over other methods of testing. Requests an advance of £200 to repair and equip the Irish Mint for the new issue of copper coin and to make experimental castings.

[36]

Mint 19/2/312-13 is also dated 12 March 1713 [= 1714].

[37]

Detailed estimate of machines required and their prices.

© 2020 The Newton Project

Professor Rob Iliffe
Director, AHRC Newton Papers Project

Scott Mandelbrote,
Fellow & Perne librarian, Peterhouse, Cambridge

Faculty of History, George Street, Oxford, OX1 2RL - newtonproject@history.ox.ac.uk

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