Author Topic: Little piggy countermark?!!  (Read 1304 times)

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Offline oldecurb

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Little piggy countermark?!!
« on: February 20, 2010, 10:26:00 AM »
Any ideas about the little pig countermarks on this 1853 USA quarter dollar? Are they for real or has someone (with a pig fetish) been playing?  They don't show on the other side of the coin.

It has been suggested from their positions that they are "makin' bacon"!!!!  Also if you have a bit of imagination it looks like there could be letters within the countermark



Bruce

translateltd

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2010, 11:03:21 AM »
Hi Bruce,

I squinted at these images at NZCCA, and even did some Googling to no avail.  Looking at the pictures posted here, though, I'm pretty convinced the letters say PORK in each case.  The first couple of letters are quite faint but I'm sure that's what they are ... and it kinda makes sense in context :-)


translateltd

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2010, 11:07:11 AM »
Aha!  Look here:

http://www.exonumia.com/art/cmd.htm

"Pork in pig" is a known countermark in the massive listing shown on the referenced site.  (It doesn't give any info as to origin, but at least it's documented.)




Online Figleaf

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2010, 11:35:12 AM »
I would speculate that the c/m is political in nature and protesting corruption (pork). In a really speculative mood, I would try to connect it with the birth of the Republican party in the wake of the Kansas-Nebraska act (1854)

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2021, 10:38:48 PM »
The pork counterstamps are still unattributed today, but I think Peter may be right in assuming they're of a political nature. I have an example on an 1831 US Large Cent, one of the oldest I've seen.

Bruce
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Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2021, 12:20:06 PM »
This example shows the word Pork in the image more clearly.

Bruce
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Online Figleaf

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2021, 07:48:13 PM »
TFP, Bruce. I am not sure it's the same punch (what do you think?), but it sure is the same sentiment!

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2021, 02:40:52 PM »
I see slight differences too, Peter.

I haven't looked into these pork stamps for a long while so went back and did a little look see. Brunk, 2003, lists about 20 known examples, but I'm sure there's at least double that today. They're on a wide variety of denominations and dates, nearly all US, but one on a Canadian token, and another on a British West Indies 1/8 Dollar. The dates range from 1816 to 1883.

Many include stamps of other animals...dogs, roosters, birds, etc. The most interesting appears on a coin that also has a stamp of the Massachusetts State Seal. This leads Brunk to offer his opinion that they were struck by a Massachusetts stamp maker. I think he's right about the stamp maker being the issuer, but not sure about the location. Anyway, it's a sound assumption.

Several are known to include stamps of individuals. They may just be incidental, but could be the name of  the maker. I have one in my collection with the name D.M. Church stamped on it but I've never been able to track him down. Another I have is also counterstamped E. Stillman. Stillman was a Philadelphia boot and shoe maker and not likely the man who made the barnyard animal stamps. I've attached pictures of both.

Bruce
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Online Figleaf

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2021, 09:08:32 PM »
Fun collection, Bruce. A closing date of 1883 destroys my Republican party theory, but a bit of mystery never hurts.

I terms of symbolism, piggies stand for wealth and having enough food, but the addition of PORK gives the animal another twist. I can't think of a better explanation than the political connotation of putting local interests above national interests. I must admit that it's not an elephant, let alone a donkey, though.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2021, 12:50:42 AM »
Agreed, the pictorial stamps create a lot of interest for me. Many difficult to decipher but so what. Gives me something to think about while I'm crunching away on my morning cereal. :)

I have a whole picture file of coins stamped with barnyard and circus animals,...yes, I have one with an elephant...tools, weapons, birds, swamp critters, and funny looking faces. My favorite one is a Vincent Van Gogh look-alike.  ;D

Bruce
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Online Figleaf

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #10 on: February 17, 2021, 09:55:24 AM »
One could construct a WoC presentation out of that ;)

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2021, 12:45:40 PM »
You're wearing me down, Peter. I'll consult Vincent and see what he says. :)

Bruce
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Offline FosseWay

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2021, 03:20:50 PM »
What on earth has happened to that 10 yen coin?

Offline brandm24

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Re: Little piggy countermark?!!
« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2021, 10:11:13 PM »
I saw this on sale at an auction with a small lot of oddballs about five years ago.It was so unusual that I bought the group...I didn't pay much for the lot. The image reminded me right away of Vincent Van Gogh for some reason. :) Here's some more pictures.

Bruce
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