Massachusetts Coin

Whether you have an interest in the state history, or you love the collection of coins from that era, the presence of the quintessential Massachusetts coin, the Massachusetts copper penny is one specimen that you will find essential to your collection. The original Massachusetts coin planned in the seventeenth century was actually originally meant to be square and quite plain; they were only to have the initials NE on them, representing New England. It wasn’t long before John Hull was declared the new mintmaster and the design of the square coin was dropped entirely.


The minting of the Masschusetts coin was opened in 1787. Though there was legislation in place to strike coins that were made of copper, silver or gold, the Massachusetts Mint only struck coins made of copper in the half cent and one cent values. The original dies were made by Joseph Callender, who added the signature S’s to the design, and Callender was succeeded by Joseph Perkins, who changed the design and tightened it up. One way to mark coins from this era is that the arrows that are held by the eagle in this minting were held in the left talon, marking it as different from all editions that came afterwards; this particular variation was known as the Transposed Arrows variety. This variety also showed off the fact that the word “CENT” was raised, rather than incuse, as would happen for all later coins.

If you are looking for a less rare Massachusetts coin, you can find the Horned Eagle One Cent, circa 1787. There is a particular die break, where the head of the eagle is affixed to the bottom left portion of the H in the word Massachusetts. This amusing variety gives the eagle the appearance of a horn, like the one found on the unicorn. This is a great coin to search for and find, and it is probable that it will not be any where near as frustrating to search out as the ones listed above.

1788 Massachusetts Coin

1788 Massachusetts Coin

The Massachusetts mint lost its legal writ to create coins on January 23, 1789, mere months before the rights of all the states to mint coins was given over to the federal government, but before this happened, there were quite a few variations of the Massachusetts coin to be found. For instance, only Massachusetts ever minted a half cent coin. Take a look both online and in coin collection shops to see what you can find from this interesting era in United States

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