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First coin minted in NSW colony attracts no small sum at auction

The first coin to be minted in the colony of NSW went under the hammer last night, to the tune of no small sum.

The coin, ordered into creation by NSW Governor Lachlan Macquarie, was a means of ensuring a reliable supply of money was in circulation for the then rapidly growing 1813 colony.

It has since been aptly named the “ holey dollar,” in a nod to the manufacturing process the coins underwent.

“Governor Macquarie imported 40,000 Spanish dollars and had them counter-marked, cut,” Jim Noble explains, from Noble Numismatics.

“He had the centre punched out. That was stamped with NSW, a crown in the centre and 1830 underneath and 15 pence on the reverse, the tail side.”

As Noble tells Michael McLaren, the coin was auctioned off for a decent amount last night.

“It went for $350,000. But if you add the buyer’s premium to that price, it comes out at $417, 375. That is what it cost the purchaser,” says Noble.

It seems the coin is in such demand, that purchasers are even willing to pay for fakes.

“Even a counterfeit holey dollar made by a convict at the time, sold for $8, 500. ”

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