Pitcairn: unadopted coin designs

Started by <k>, December 31, 2016, 10:04:29 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


Pitcairn Elderton-.jpg

These designs were by Robert Elderton of the Royal Mint. 

The ship here was considered to be too small compared to the background.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.


Pitcairn Elderton.jpg

The authorities thought that the masts would not have remained so intact.

The settlers would most likely have salvaged parts of them.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.


Pitcairn Elderton#.jpg

The ship without masts.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.


Pitcairn Elderton~.jpg

The ship with partial masts.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.



The issued design.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.


In 1987 a German company approached The Royal Mint.

It was considering the issuance of a series of 4 coins related to HMS Bounty.

These were going to be the first ever coins from the Pitcairn Islands.

Furthermore one coin was going to be issued by Tonga.

Both Robert Elderton and Robert Evans were asked to submit designs.

The designs below were made by Robert Evans.



The Royal Mint considered this a rather 'romantic' interpretation of the settlement.

They were unsure if it would be accepted by the Pitcairn Government.

The establishment created upon arrival on the island was extremely crude.

The design was therefore incorrect.



This design was meant for a coin of Tonga.

The Royal Mint thought the windows as drawn by Mr Evans were of a wrong shape.

The windows on HMS Bounty were rectangular.

On the ship only 'Bounty' was shown and 'HMS' should have been left out.

For the sake of diplomacy the word 'mutiny' should not have been included.



The inscription on the coin should have been "The Constitution 150 years 1838-1988".

The Royal Mint wanted more nautical elements added to the upper portion of the design

It was considered to be rather plain.

The characters in the foreground should look less as if they are leaning overboard.



This was going to be the coin that was the most attractive for collectors.

The design was not considered accurate enough.

The Royal Mint preferred the ship to be depicted in full sail at sea.

Again for the sake of diplomacy the word 'mutiny' should be left out.

More detail should be added to the design.


Although the mint made some specific comments about the designs, it simply didn't like the overall appearance of the designs submitted by Robert Evans and didn't want to show the designs to the customer.

Robert Evans was far from happy about the comments that he received as he had put a lot of work in the making of these designs. He wrote the Mint that he had only been told by the mint to show ships on the designs. Furthermore he had been told not to depict mutineers. According to him each coin would easily stand as an expressive statement on it's own, or could be incorporated into a balanced set.

Concerning the design showing the signing of the constitution he remarked that the inscriptions were just interpretations for the customer. He also wrote that the characters were clearly leaning on a table and that he had left the upper part of the design open to give a sense of space.

Concerning the design showing the Bounty he remarked that he wanted to have the image of the Bounty as large as possible in the frame. The comments made by The Royal Mint would destroy that.

Concerning the design showing the island settlement he wrote that he had tried to question some traditional prejudices concerning coin and medal design. That is according to him artistically superior to the rest. He didn't understand how The Royal Mint could dismiss it so lightly. He believed the symbolism to be appropriate. 

Concerning the Mutiny and Seizure design, he commented that he had seen both contemporary images of the Bounty as well as images from this century with circular and square windows and he didn't know which were the right ones.

"For the life of me I can not see how your suggestions for the designs would be an improvement on mine. To revert to the same tired old formula of fitting topographical views inside circles and simply flogging a bit of lettering around it would mean that there would never be any new art. I don't pretend that my images and ideas are part of any great vanguard or of any revolutionary artistic movement, but I am trying to take a fresh look at the product from which we both make a living."

The attempts of Robert Evans were to no avail and The Royal Mint soon gave the task to sculptor Ronald Hooker about who not much is known.