Steel One Penny Token Die, made by Thomas Stokes, Melbourne, 1862. Used for tokens issued by Murray & Christie, Castlemaine. In 1857 Murray joined Christie's business as a salesman. In 1861 they built another more substantial building on the same site. Unfortunately for them, when business slowed in Castlemaine in 1865 they had invested in the town heavily, purchasing a flour mill. They speculated in a range of pastoral, mining and property investments, all to their loss. David Murray became insolvent in 1871. Both men left Castlemaine in 1875, having speculated without much gain.

Previous Collections: National Gallery of Victoria

Physical Description

A steel die 55 mm high with a base diameter of 54 mm and a working surface diameter of 34 mm. The die features the variety of businesses the firm undertook, grocers, ironmongers, china and glass ware merchants. It has suffered a rim chip between 06 and 07 up to the beading.

Reverse Description


More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Numismatics & Philately, Working Life & Trades

  • Acquisition Information

    Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), 15 Mar 1976

  • Date Issued

    1862 AD

  • Issued By

    Victoria, Australia

  • Mint

    Stokes (Mint), Melbourne, Greater Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1862

  • Commissioned By

    Murray & Christie, Castlemaine, Victoria, Australia, 1862

  • Previous Collection

    Numismatics Collection, National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), pre 1976

  • Inscriptions


  • Denomination

    1 Penny

  • Series

    Dies, Trade Tokens

  • Material


  • Classification

    Trade tokens, Australia - victoria, Dies

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline


  • Type of item


  • Dimensions

    56 mm (Height), 54 mm (Outside Diameter)

  • References

    The company of Murray and Christie arranged with Stokes for the manufacture of their trade tokens in 1862. There was some trouble with both the obverse and reverse dies during the production. The first reverse die cracked and was replaced, with the two dies being identified in standard catalogues by the small differences in the relative positions of the lettering, a simple test involves the length of the word GROCERS and the postion of the letter R in GROCERS above the letters in the word IRONMONGERS: Die GROCERS R ABOVE 1 20.5 mm GE 2 19.4 G - This die The obverse die is in the museum collection (NU 35771) as is Reverse 2 (this die). Although the working face of the obverse is undamaged the main body of the die is surrounded by a series of deep indentations apparently made while trying to fix the die in the press. This is the only die in the collection so damaged and suggests that the steel was soft. This could explain the existance of the trade tokens made with Reverse 2 and Stokes stock die (Sharples Arms 6 = Heyde Arms 5), it may have become impossible to clamp the obverse die in the press so the order was filled with a stock die - the use of two reverses creating a trade token without the issuers name.
    [Book] Heyde, Gilbert C. & Skinner, Dion H. 1967. Unofficial Coins of Colonial Australia and New Zealand.
    [Article] Sharples, John P. 1993. A Catalogue of the Trade Tokens of Victoria 1848 to 1862. Journal of the Numismatic Association of Australia. vol.7: p.1-77.

  • Keywords

    Glass, Grocers, Ironmongers, Numismatic Dies, Numismatic Technology, Retail Trade, Retailing