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Reality check - videos with 2 key people confirm Griquatown tokens NEVER circulated.

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dennrein

Short reply

 

You're right, we are getting off topic, so I'll just make it short. The printing press idea was simply an attempt to try and find evidence of when the coins might have arrived. And there is hard evidence that the printing press arrived in 1817, if not sooner.

 

Moffat put a lot of effort into building his own reputation. He makes no mention of Helm's Setswana book (but it was the first one published on the language! see here http://www.ajol.info/index.php/actat/article/view/67242/55342 - the important sentence being: "A first edition of an elementary Spelling Book in the Bechuana Language was printed by the missionary Henry Helm at Griquastad in 1819, compiled by the 'brethren at Lattakoo' — the first book in Setswana!") and the claim that the Kuruman press was the first north of the Orange River simply isn't true. If three sources of the time confirm this independently of each other, I see it as proven that Griquatown had a printing press more than ten years before Kuruman.

 

On possible anti-Dutch sentiments of the missionaries: A lot of them were German (Helm, Sass, Kicherer) and Anderson himself had a Dutch wife (Johanna Maria Schonken). Helm had difficulties with English and gave a Dutch translation of the bible to the Tswana (Moffat 1842:620). So you have to keep the mission and the colony apart.

 

Regards

dennrein

Edited by dennrein

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Hi Dennrein

 

For the record here is another sad image reflecting what has happened to the historic Kuruman Mission under its new African curator...

 

This image (click on the thumbnail below) was taken in the same room as the printing press .. thank G-od it is too heavy to walk out the room with!

 

print.jpg.70d5db06f98e42e2ada8ae2712e9ab9d.jpg

 

Now lets get back to the topic :bigsmile:

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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Explain this....

 

Here are some points in reply:

 

2. I agree that having no trading store and the nomadic inclination of the Griqua would have made it difficult to get the tokens circulating. That is precisely why "the greater part" - NOT "the great majority", as you quote Helm - of the coins was still in possession of the mission. The lack of reference by Campbell to the coins on his second journey isn't convincing evidence. He also doesn't refer to the printing activities that would have been much more important in terms of missionary work, which shows that he had other things on his mind, e.g. Anderson leaving Griquatown, Read refusing to leave Lattakoo etc.

 

Regards

dennrein

 

The following tokens recently sold on DNW....

1815 Griquatown Ten Pence in VF fetched 3400 GBP (R51,000)

1815 Griquatown Five Pence in VF scratched - 1650 GBP (R24,750)

1815 Griquatown Halfpence in VF- cleaned - 700 GBP (R10,500)

1815 Griquatown Quarter Pence in EF- 1800 GBP (R27,000)

1815 Halfpence -about VF - Surface corrosion - 1150GBP (R17,250)

 

Let's ignore the incorrect date still attached to the tokens (Parsons) and consider this....

 

In your quote above you say would have made it difficult to get the tokens circulating.

 

I agree.

The US Mint tells us that it takes 25 years for a coin in constant daily use to get worn completely - about half that to get to VF.

 

How then did these tokens get to VF if they "circulated" constantly for over ten years?

 

It certainly wasn't at Griquatown.

 

So where did they circulate has always been and remains my question. Waiting for suggestions.

 

You know my views.

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

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lilythepink

Chickenman suggests that perhaps some old tannie "circulated" them by turning them very well in the batter of a Christmas pudding? (Sorry, Scott, I couldn't resist this!)

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Cold Sea

The Alacrity

 

Hi Dennrein,

 

The good ship Alacrity sailed from Gravesend, October 1816 and arrived in Cape Town, January 1817. On board were at least seven missionaries, of which two were destined for Griqua Town to augment the existing missionary station, given the success of the missionary endeavours. Moffat was on the same ship. (Remember politics at the Cape prohibited them from travelling onwards from Cape Town to their stations at the time). Campbell was present at the farewell sermon in Surrey. Apologies, but I must read up the names of the two missionaries again. (I think Evans and Taylor, or maybe Kitchingman, but I stand corrected). This might shed some light on the 1815/1816 despatch claims by Parsons.

 

About the same time the British were mulling the Pound/mil decimal system, which divided the pound into a thousand quarters. (France and neighbouring countries had already moved on to a decimal weight, measures and currency system in 1799) Mercator, a pseudonym of course, in 1814, published an article that suggested a decimal system not unlike the Griqua denominations. (The various decimal systems and their pro and cons, is a fascinating subject and a must when you get the time).

 

Derick

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TS Ron
Chickenman suggests that perhaps some old tannie "circulated" them by turning them very well in the batter of a Christmas pudding? (Sorry, Scott, I couldn't resist this!)

This is be what my Grandmother put in her Christmas pudding jeeze I better go and dig around the garden we thought they were metal discs!

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Hi Dennrein,

 

The good ship Alacrity sailed from Gravesend, October 1816 and arrived in Cape Town, January 1817. On board were at least seven missionaries, of which two were destined for Griqua Town to augment the existing missionary station, given the success of the missionary endeavours. Moffat was on the same ship. (Remember politics at the Cape prohibited them from travelling onwards from Cape Town to their stations at the time). Campbell was present at the farewell sermon in Surrey. Apologies, but I must read up the names of the two missionaries again. (I think Evans and Taylor, or maybe Kitchingman, but I stand corrected). This might shed some light on the 1815/1816 despatch claims by Parsons.

 

About the same time the British were mulling the Pound/mil decimal system, which divided the pound into a thousand quarters. (France and neighbouring countries had already moved on to a decimal weight, measures and currency system in 1799) Mercator, a pseudonym of course, in 1814, published an article that suggested a decimal system not unlike the Griqua denominations. (The various decimal systems and their pro and cons, is a fascinating subject and a must when you get the time).

 

Derick

 

Derick

 

In my view the timing you suggest does not fit in with the 1815-16 missionary report on Griquatown which states...

 

The Griquatown mission to the London Missionary Society (LMS) say in their 1815-16 report:An Auxiliary Mission Society has been established in Griquatown, the subscribers to which, having no money (for money is utterly unknown in that part of the world) have contributed property which is to be sold for the benefit of the Society. (pg 85 Schoeman)

 

Comment: Why "having no money" in the 1815-16 report from the LMS Society in Griquatown? and also in this same report... (pg 85 Schoeman) An auxilliary mission has been established in Griqua Town, the subscribers to which, having no money, (for money is utterly unknown in that part of the world) have contributed property which is to be sold for the benefit of the Society. The following is a list of the subscriptions: elephant's teeth, 30 pounds; nine young bulls; four hefers; one ox; twehty three sheep; five goats. To remedy the inconvenience sustained by the people (who have now made considerable progress in civilization) by their want of a circulating medium, the Directors are now procuring for them a coinage of silver tokens.

 

In other words this report quoted above would have been written at the end of 1816 or in early 1817. Minting coins takes time - especially back then. You had to make the dies, trial a few proofs for approval and then go into mint. In my view that would be mean late 1817 at the earliest.

 

The most obvious time that they sailed across to Cape Town was with Dr Philip accompanied by Rev John Campbell - and that was in 1819.

 

Regardless I can see from your post that you now accept that the 1815 date ascribed to these tokens is incorrect - because they would only have arrived in Griquatown years later.

 

This is one of my key points because according to Parsons he sighted an unknown, unreferenced document that says the tokens were shipped and circulated in two lots in 1815 and 1816. This factual error puts his entire document in doubt - because it is clearly wrong. As I have said so many times before this is pivotal to my argument because the whole reason collectors today believe they actually circulated is founded on Parsons unsupported premise that the tokens circulated for two years at Griquatown (1815-16) before being returned.

 

Once the integrity of Parsons 1927 work is factually in question (and it is) the entire document loses credibility.

 

We then have to assess the facts again. These clearly support my view that Arndt is correct when he says not a single farthing ever circulated (at Griquatown).

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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dennrein

Maybe...

 

Thanks for really interesting input, Derick. I've done some more research and have come to the following conclusion: If indeed the printing press (and the coins?) was (were) brought to Griquatown May 1817 at the latest, it was probably by missionaries in 1816 or in the first half of 1817.

 

If the second date (1817) is correct, it might well be that the press (and the coins?) was (were) on the Alacrity that left England in 1816 and arrived in Cape Town in January 1817. The problem here is that while Moffat and Kitchingman were allowed to go to Namaqualand that same year (Deane 1888), missionaries John Taylor and Evan Evans were prevented from going to Griquatown because the Griqua had refused to send recruits to the colonial army. So the press (and the coins?) couldn't be taken there by Taylor/Evans but rather by other people or via another mission station. Evans was sent to Bethelsdorp soon after it became apparent he couldn't go to Griquatown (compare Wells 2000: 159) - maybe with the press (and the coins)?

 

If the first date (1816) is correct, maybe the press (and the coins?) was (were) on a ship that left England in 1815, with missionaries John Evans, Robert Hamilton, Joseph Williams and Rev. Barker on board. Evans, Hamilton and Williams proceeded to Bethelsdorp but only Evans and Hamilton went on to Griquatown. They must have arrived there early 1816, because they proceeded to closeby Lattakoo (Maropeng) from there, where they arrived February 17, 1816 (Moffat 1846: 61). Later that year, James Read joined them from Bethelsdorp. It could have been either Evans/Hamilton or Read who brought the press (and the coins?) to Griquatown, if it was transported via Bethelsdorp. Remember, it was Read who had ordered the press in the first place.

 

The press (coins?) might even have been on both ships, which would mean Parsons was right in assuming that the coins were sent in two batches, one in 1815 and one in 1816. There is another possibility of how the press (coins?) was (were) transported from Cape Town to Griquatown. Eventhough the missionaries who arrived in Cape Town in 1817 weren't allowed to travel to Griquatown, Robert Hamilton, then living in Griquatown travelled to the colony in December 1816 (Dachs 1972: 647) "for supplies" (Moffat 1846: 62). "Proceeding to the colony" in those days would have meant going to Cape Town, where he could have picked up the press (and coins?) and brought them to Griquatown, before joining Read in Lattakoo. In fact, to me this is the most plausible option, because Hamilton would have had to organize transport for the supplies anyway and he would have met up with the other missionaries arriving in Cape Town in January 1817.

 

As always, this is all based on what we know and there is no way of filling in the gaps. Neither the printing press nor the coins are mentioned in correspondence at the time or it simply hasn't been published. All we know is the coins were ordered by Campbell (probably on his return in 1815) and the printing press was ordered by Read (in 1815 or 1816) and the press had arrived and was working in Griquatown by May 1817. How and when it (and the coins?) got there is subject to speculation.

 

Regards

dennrein

Edited by dennrein

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Thanks for really interesting input, Derick. I've done some more research and have come to the following conclusion: If indeed the printing press (and the coins?) was (were) brought to Griquatown May 1817 at the latest, it was probably by missionaries in 1816 or in the first half of 1817.

 

If the second date (1817) is correct, it might well be that the press (and the coins?) was (were) on the Alacrity that left England in 1816 and arrived in Cape Town in January 1817. The problem here is that while Moffat and Kitchingman were allowed to go to Namaqualand that same year (Deane 1888), missionaries John Taylor and Evan Evans were prevented from going to Griquatown because the Griqua had refused to send recruits to the colonial army. So the press (and the coins?) couldn't be taken there by Taylor/Evans but rather by other people or via another mission station. Evans was sent to Bethelsdorp soon after it became apparent he couldn't go to Griquatown (compare Wells 2000: 159) - maybe with the press (and the coins)?

 

If the first date (1816) is correct, maybe the press (and the coins?) was (were) on a ship that left England in 1815, with missionaries John Evans, Robert Hamilton, Joseph Williams and Rev. Barker on board. Evans, Hamilton and Williams proceeded to Bethelsdorp but only Evans and Hamilton went on to Griquatown. They must have arrived there early 1816, because they proceeded to closeby Lattakoo (Maropeng) from there, where they arrived February 17, 1816 (Moffat 1846: 61). Later that year, James Read joined them from Bethelsdorp. It could have been either Evans/Hamilton or Read who brought the press (and the coins?) to Griquatown, if it was transported via Bethelsdorp. Remember, it was Read who had ordered the press in the first place.

 

The press (coins?) might even have been on both ships, which would mean Parsons was right in assuming that the coins were sent in two batches, one in 1815 and one in 1816. There is another possibility of how the press (coins?) was (were) transported from Cape Town to Griquatown. Eventhough the missionaries who arrived in Cape Town in 1817 weren't allowed to travel to Griquatown, Robert Hamilton, then living in Griquatown travelled to the colony in December 1816 (Dachs 1972: 647) "for supplies" (Moffat 1846: 62). "Proceeding to the colony" in those days would have meant going to Cape Town, where he could have picked up the press (and coins?) and brought them to Griquatown, before joining Read in Lattakoo. In fact, to me this is the most plausible option, because Hamilton would have had to organize transport for the supplies anyway and he would have met up with the other missionaries arriving in Cape Town in January 1817.

 

As always, this is all based on what we know and there is no way of filling in the gaps. Neither the printing press nor the coins are mentioned in correspondence at the time or it simply hasn't been published. All we know is the coins were ordered by Campbell (probably on his return in 1815) and the printing press was ordered by Read (in 1815 or 1816) and the press had arrived and was working in Griquatown by May 1817. How and when it (and the coins?) got there is subject to speculation.

 

Regards

dennrein

 

Hi Dennrein

 

You have lost it over the dates... the transcript I posted above refers to the report on Griquatown in 1815-16 and there being NO money in Griquatown. I am now getting more interested in the person behind the anonymity.. more than his/her increasingly baseless speculations - so clearly reflected in the past and again in the quote above.

 

With regards to the "printing press" at Griquatown .. I thought we had shelved that suggestion? It is irrelevant and simply clouds the focus of this thread. There is absolutely no evidence - apart from a comment by a coloured missionary suggesting there was one. The only printing press that is authenticated and real is the one at Kuruman - brought to that mission by Moffat in 1831.

 

Lets keep to the subject matter - the tokens please.

 

PS I would like you to prove the claim shown in red above ... and if you can't then how do you come to the assertion "all we know" as if it was fact?

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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Lukeness

This is an intriguing subject with much of the historical evidence contradictory in some way or another.

 

Lloyd, ACG, The birth of printing in South Africa (1914)

"The next town to start printing was Griqua Town, which, according to the Directors of the London Missionary Society, had a press in 1821. Here Mr. Helm printed some copies of a spelling book in the c Bootchuana ' language."

 

From the above it seems he does not know when the press arrived, only it was there in 1821.

Although I have to add that he also questions the validity of it:

 

This statement again presents some doubts and difficulties to the mind, in spite of its definite character. It must be said at once that no copy of this spelling book is at present known. In 1826 Robert Moffat was stationed at Lattakoo or Kuruman, at no great distance from Griqua Town. In that year he sent home to London a Sechuana Spelling Book which he had compiled, and of which the London Missionary Society caused two thousand copies to be printed and sent out. If there was already a press at Griqua Town which had previously issued a Sechuana spelling book it would seem unnecessary to send the manuscript so far.

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Hi guys

 

Can we start the printing press debate in a new thread?

 

Good point though Lukeness.. :))

 

Thanks

 

Scott Balson

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DNW Auctions now accepting my evidence on the Griquatown tokens

 

An interesting belated admission made today by Georg reflects the fact that DNW (Dix Noonan Web) Auctions are now accepting the evidence I have presented on BoB that the Griquatown tokens arrived c1820 NOT 1815...

 

Here is a link to Georg's admission... http://forum.bidorbuy.co.za/coins-notes-numismatist/15316-unique-patterns-get-unique-prices-dnw-auction-17th-november.html#post127298

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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Cold Sea

Scott Balson agrees that the Griqua coins circulated!

 

Common sense always prevails.

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Pierre_Henri

No it was not 1815 or even 1820 - it was actually 1812 (CS Balson)

 

An interesting belated admission made today by Georg reflects the fact that DNW (Dix Noonan Web) Auctions are now accepting the evidence I have presented on BoB that the Griquatown tokens circulated c1820 NOT 1815...

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

 

"... Cut off from the rest of the colony, and having grown accustomed to the pleasures of the white man, the coloureds requested Rev. John Campbell to introduce their own coinage to facilitate trade. This request Rev. Campbell complied with, and in 1812 the Griquatown coinage was introduced. The first official currency ever minted for use in South Africa ..."

 

CS Balson (Journal 1 ASANS undated)

 

Research is always difficult, and one obviously have to change your views and beliefs as time marches on. That is why I find the whole printing press saga at Griquatown presented here so absolutely fascinating. This just shows us that after decades of researching, one can still miss something so important so completely.

 

Pierre

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Little Miss Muffet

Confucius says"???**$$##@@%%^^

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lilythepink

Chickenman says he will give you a nip, Pam! lol

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Little Miss Muffet
Chickenman says he will give you a nip, Pam! lol

This meant to donate confusion not swearing.

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lilythepink

We all get confused at times, Pam. Some of us are confused all the time! :whistling:

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Pierre_Henri

I agree

 

Confucius says"???**$$##@@%%^^

 

Its amazing .....

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Pierre_Henri
"... Cut off from the rest of the colony, and having grown accustomed to the pleasures of the white man, the coloureds requested Rev. John Campbell to introduce their own coinage to facilitate trade. This request Rev. Campbell complied with, and in 1812 the Griquatown coinage was introduced. The first official currency ever minted for use in South Africa ..."

 

CS Balson (Journal 1 ASANS undated)

 

Research is always difficult, and one obviously have to change your views and beliefs as time marches on. That is why I find the whole printing press saga at Griquatown presented here so absolutely fascinating. This just shows us that after decades of researching, one can still miss something so important so completely.

 

Pierre

 

Sorry Geewiz - this is the one I wanted you to read ...

 

Kind regards

 

Pierre

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Guest Guest

Shooting the messenger (part two)

 

"... Cut off from the rest of the colony, and having grown accustomed to the pleasures of the white man, the coloureds requested Rev. John Campbell to introduce their own coinage to facilitate trade. This request Rev. Campbell complied with, and in 1812 the Griquatown coinage was introduced. The first official currency ever minted for use in South Africa ..."

 

CS Balson (Journal 1 ASANS undated)

 

Research is always difficult, and one obviously have to change your views and beliefs as time marches on. That is why I find the whole printing press saga at Griquatown presented here so absolutely fascinating. This just shows us that after decades of researching, one can still miss something so important so completely.

 

Pierre

 

Hi Pierre

 

Here you go **** stirring again.. that's fine it tells us something about the person behind the words,.

 

It was a great honour to get invited to present the paper to SANS back then in 1987 - long before some of the collectors here were born.

 

What you fail to mention is that the article only very briefly covers the Griquatown tokens - concentrating on the Strachan and Co which, at that time, I had only recently completed my published work, "Kence, the trade tokens of S&Co" with Dr Clive Graham. My knowledge of the Griquatown tokens - not the focus of the article - was very limited at that time.

 

What this article reflect is just one important fact - that I have been researching the history of the Griqua for a long, long time.

 

As a true numismatist with a fascination in early South African money and the history of the Griqua I started researching their history for myself. It was during the 1990s that I suddenly realised that Parsons report (which all other subsequent references to the Griquatown tokens are based on) was hocus pocus.

 

A couple of years ago Anthony Govender queried my comments about the Griquatown tokens in this same article - something you would have been aware of. Thus my opening statement directed at you.

 

I will repeat my response to Anthony so that I might jog your memory. It is not uncommon, in research, to do your own investigative work and discover that something that has been accepted as fact in the past is completely wrong and without foundation. As a man who loves his hobby it is important for me to get that information out there. This I have now done in a large part.. and I won't be distracted by you.

 

Now if you cannot offer something on topic or of importance to this debate then sit back, read and learn and let the serious numismatists get back to the subject at hand on this thread.

 

Kind regards

 

Scott Balson

Edited by ndoa18

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Pierre_Henri

Printing press saga at Griquatown

 

Fine with me - lets get serious about the printing press at Griquatown and the dates it could have been installed there or anywhere else ...

 

Let's start at the date 1820 and work our way date wise onwards - I think you said a press was installed post 1830 at another location...

 

(The reason I am asking you this is if you deny serious proof on this issue then there is no way forward on any other issues - then your mind is made up and it would be silly to continue discussions on any other relevant Griqua issues)

 

Pierre

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lilythepink

Pierre, I think Scott wants us to open another thread about the press?

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Pierre_Henri

Yes, but hiding it elsewhere won't work ...

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lilythepink

Now, now... :whistling:

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