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Carolina Elephant Token


Electrotype, copper obverse/reverse shells with lead interior, made by unknown craftsman in late 1800s or early 1900s. The North Carolina Collection does not own an original 1694 specimen, but the department's numismatic collection does contain numerous reproductions of the token, including this very high-quality electrotype. At times, this copy has fooled veteran numismatists as well as inexperienced collectors. The electrotype's physical characteristics or “diagnostics” are identical to those found on another copy housed in the Robert H. Gore, Jr. Numismatic Collection in the Hesburgh Library at the University of Notre Dame. This electrotype is so well done that it replicates subtle characteristics found on the second variety of Carolina elephant tokens, most notably the traces of an “E” beneath the second “O” in “PROPRIETORS.”

North Carolina Collection: Accession Number CK.912