History of the Coins and Tokens of Canada - 1894




On the 18th of October, 1807, Sir James Craig arrived in Canada as Governor. He was then 57 years of age, 42 of which he had passed in the army. He had already seen service in America, having been present at the actions at Saratoga, under Burgoyne. He had taken a leading part in the capture of the Cape of Good Hope, served five years in India, and subsequently as commander of the Corps d'Armee in the Mediterranean, thus he had risen to one of the highest positions in the service. But his constitution was broken with disease, which made him irritable and dictatorial in manner. He took the reins of Government at a most critical time, and at the opening of his first parliament assumed dictatorial powers and thus made himself very unpopular.

One of his first acts was to dismiss Messrs. Panet, Bedard, Taschereau, Borgia and Blanchet from the militia. From April, 1809, to the 26th of February, 1810, he dissolved two parliaments, and twice appealed to the people without being able to change its complexion, which continued to be 14 English and 36 French speaking Canadians. On the 17th of March, on a warrant of justice Sewell, he sent a company of soldiers to seize the whole of the type, and presses of "Le Canadien" of Quebec, which had been regularly published since November 22nd, 1806. The printer was arrested, and also, two days afterwards, three members of Parliament, Messrs. Bedard, Blanchet and Taschereau, at Quebec. Messrs. Laforce, Pierre Papineau and Corbeil, were subjected to the same indignity at Montreal. One fact is certain, nothing appeared in the columns of "Le Canadien" that warranted the outrage. On December the 12th, of the same year, Sir James Craig opened the new parliament; in the meantime all the prisoners had been liberated except Bedard, who refused to leave the prison without a trial. This last parliament he prorogued on the 21st of March, 1811, having previously asked to be recalled from the Governorship on account of failing health. Although his farewell speech, it was, like all his speeches from the throne, dictatorial and bitter. He left Canada on the 11th of June, 1811, and died in England in January, 1812.

Garneau speaks of him as a capricious and narrow administrator. The coins illustrated under Nos. 558 and 559 are satirical pieces relating to the administration of this Governor, and to judge from the inscription on the obverse, describe him as the "Pest  of Canadians" or better, "The Torment of Canadians." The reverse has been translated to mean "Don't you wish you may catch them." All specimens are poorly struck, and it is impossible to find any in good condition; such specimens should be accepted. They are becoming rare; three to four dollars being easily obtained for them. Several varieties. K- 3.



Same history as last. Several varieties. K- 3.



LEAD. - Issued by John Goudie, to be used as tickets on the ferry steamer, "Lauzon," that ran between Quebec and Point Levi. The ferry passed into the hands of J. McKenzie, who stamped his initials J. McK. on many of the tokens. This was long considered very rare, but a number of counterfeit specimens have turned up lately, of which some were sold to collectors. R. 4. Surcharged J. McK. R. 4 ˝.



Issued about the year 1832. Two varieties-one like the cut and the other with the S in importers further to the left under the C in Co. R. 1 ˝.



The firm which issued this coin was long the most enterprising in the city. The father, John Molson, owned the steamboat "Accommodation," the first to run on the St. Lawrence, which left Montreal on her first trip November 3rd, 1809, with ten passengers bound for Quebec, taking 36 hours to accomplish the voyage, the price being $8.00 for the trip down and $9.00 from Quebec to Montreal. On August 20th, 1812, he launched the "Swiftsure," and these, two boats were used to transport troops between the two cities during the war of 1812-14. 

The dies, which were engraved by Joseph Arnault in Montreal, are still in possession of the firm. This coin occurs with thick and thin planchets. R. 3.



This coin was ordered in anticipation of the son's entering the partnership, but this was never consummated. R. 2.



Owen's Ropery was set up in the eastern part of the city. It was established about the year 1824. Shortly afterwards the concern was sold out to John A. Converse, the founder of the Montreal Ropery, now merged into the Canada Cordage Co. One of these pieces sold for $55.00 at a coin sale in New York. R. 5.



ISSUED IN 1837. The business is still carried on in Quebec by sons of the founder. R. 1 ˝



This firm was established in Montreal in 1849, and its dissolution not very long afterwards, indicates why the coin was not issued in any large quantity. One of the sons of Mr. Maysenholder, now 37 years of age, also a jeweler, residing in Montreal, well remembers an employee of his father use these dies to strike sufficient of these coins to pay for his drinks. In the year 1886, Mr. A. Desroches discovered seven of these coins, and a little later 24 others, making 31 in all, besides seven pieces struck only on one side. He has not been able to find any trace of the dies. Mr. Desroches who, himself, has given these facts, guarantees their authenticity. His reason for not sooner communicating them to the public was, that he might secure all these coins that were to be had, and exchange or sell them to the best advantage. Mr. Desroches has disposed of the whole of the find at good prices, and they are becoming very rare, selling easily from 15 to 25 dollars. R. 4.



Hunterstown is a small village on the Riviere du Loup, about 25 miles from Louiseville. Sometime, about the year 1850, an American lumbering firm, known as the Hunterstown Lumbering Company, secured the limits, and for years carried on extensive operations. The company had a supply store, and paid their men in script, redeemable at the store. This coin was good for a half-penny. The first specimen known to collectors came into the hands of Mr. P. Murphy at Quebec; another found by Mr. A. Nutter was sold for $25.00. R. 4.




Issued towards the end of the year 1862, by a firm of exchange brokers, of which the head of the firm, Mr. Wm. Weir, is at present the President and General Manager of La Banque Ville Marie, at Montreal. Mr. Weir still carries on the business as Banker with his two sons as partners, on Notre Dame Street, Montreal. When specie payment was suspended in the United States, the people found it so difficult to get change that they had stamps encased as the above, and Mr. Larminee, on a visit to New York, had a quantity made for his firm, although such change was not required in Canada. R. 4.



On inquiring from Mr. Devins, shortly before his death, he gave the following information about this coin; He had made some enquiries to one of his friends in England about the cost of a coin inscribed with his business card. What was his surprise then, although he had gone no further, to learn that a consignment of these coins had been seized at the Montreal Custom House. Not having ordered the coins, and having no invoice, although he had written to England, he got no reply, his friend being dead. He left the; coins unclaimed in the hands of the authorities. In the meantime, collectors sought to procure the coins, and secured a number from friends in the Custom House. When this came to the knowledge of the Minister, the balance was ordered to be melted. Mr. Devins could not tell how many were struck or circulated; although he never had any of these coins in his possession he was constantly troubled with requests for these from collectors. R. 2 ˝.



Struck in Birmingham for R. Sharpley, about the year 1865. He then did business in the Crystal Block, Notre Dame Street. These jetons were sold as card markers. R. 2.



These coins are said to have been struck in Quebec, for the firm whose name they bear. This firm did an extensive business in dry goods, in St. Roch suburb. There is said to have been over 1,000 issued. The balance, 200 in all, was purchased by Mr. Cyrille Tessier, of Quebec. R. 1.



According to Sir G. Duncan Gibb, these coins were struck in Birmingham for a Montreal firm who employed a number of workingmen. There was a very large issue. R. 1 ˝.



One hundred and ten specimens issued in 1886, and the dies, engraved by C. Tison, are still extant. (See Biography). 5 varieties. R. 2.



This firm was first known as Hansgen & Gnaedinger. Ten thousand of these coins were struck in Germany, about the year 1887. R. 1.



STRUCK IN GERMANY. There were 200 of these issued in 1887. The dies still remaining undestroyed. Mr. Desjardins, who is 40 years of age, commenced collecting in J885. The whole issue of this coin was delivered to Mr. Desjardins with suspension ring, these he had taken out before they were circulated. R. 2.



Mr. Cardinal was born at St. Cyprien, Napierville County, on the 29th of October, 1861, and is therefore 32 years of age. He commenced collecting coins and medals in I883, and, during several years, was one of the most active Numismatists, and was especially an amateur of fine coins. Mr. Cardinal kept the run of all the coin sales in the United States, having the reputation of a keen buyer. In 1886, he ordered the coin illustrated above, but by mistake the word Canada was omitted. Eleven of these pieces were struck, and afterwards "Canada," as in No. 577 was added to the die, which was adopted. Mr. Cardinal only got one specimen for himself having refused the balance, they were sold to Mr. R. W. McLachlan. R. 3 ˝.



Issue 100. The dies are still extant. (See note No. 576). R. 1 ˝.



Issue 100, by the same as the last, Nos. 576 and 577. The dies still exist. R. 1 ˝.



Mr. Lymburner ordered these dies in 1871. In 1872 he entered into partnership with Mr. Chas. Martin. After several years this partnership was dissolved, when the dies remained in the hands of Martin, who sold them to Dr. Elliott Woodward, of Roxbury, Mass., who sold them at auction in 1878. They, at that time, came into the hands of Dr. J. Leroux, who had 100 copies struck, besides those struck by Lymburner, of which the number is not known, but the first issue can be distinguished by the planchet, which is much thinner than the last issue. The dies are still extant. R. 2.



The dies of this piece were ordered before the firm was changed, and only two specimens were struck. Afterwards the dies were sold to Messrs. R. W. McLachlan and T. J. Mocock, who had 100 of the coins struck, two of which were in silver, when the dies were destroyed. R. 2.



Issued in 1886 by Lymburner, as an advertising card for his patent heater. The obverse of Cardinal's coin, No. 577, was used in striking this token. R. 1 ˝.



Two hundred struck in December, 1885. The dies are still in existence, but in very bad order. Dr. J. Leroux issued this and the four following pieces to advertise his Numismatic works. (See Biography.) R. 1 ˝.



Issued in January, 1886. Only 86 struck, but the dies still exist, although in bad order. R. 2.



There were 194 struck in January, 1886. The dies are still in existence, but in bad order. R. 1 ˝.



One thousand impressions struck in copper, in 1891. The dies still exist. R. 1 ˝.



One thousand struck in 1891. The dies still exist. R. 1 ˝.



The checker club that had been in existence for ten years, was amalgamated with the chess club in 1891, and the annual subscription was fixed at $3.00. It was decided to have a Jeton de presence or admission ticket struck in copper. The commission was entrusted to Dr. J. Leroux to order 100 of the above Jeton. The dies are still in existence. R. 2 ˝.



During a trip to Europe in 1889, Dr. J. Leroux visited the workshop of J. Moore, the celebrated medalist of Birmingham. This was on the 15th of June. Among a number of trial and other pieces, he found the coin above illustrated, and after having learned that the dies were still intact, ordered 500 of these coins to be struck. These were to be ready when he returned, but only 98 were delivered, as the dies broke after that number had been struck. This check was ordered for Guilbault's Gardens, into which it was intended that the admission fee should be 30 sous, (25 cents) but as the admission has always been 15 sous (12 1/2, cents), the coin was refused, and for this reason the dies remained with Mr. Moore. R. 2 ˝.



Brass piece struck in Germany about 1887, to be used in a German club, meeting on St. Catherine Street. These were only in use a short time and the balance, 900 out of the 1000 issued, also with the die destroyed, were sold to P. N. Breton. The reverse is a stock die used for striking Speil marks or card markers. R. 1 ˝.



This and the following fifteen coins, Nos. 591 to 605, were struck as mules with the obverse die of the last, No. 589, and the obverses of small Tetons struck in commemoration of different kings and other rulers who have reigned during the past fifty years. Only three specimens were issued of each of the Nos. 590 to 597, and about 20 of each of Nos. 598 to 605. Rarity 4 ˝ for the set of 8 pieces, Nos. 590 to 597. Rarity 3 ˝ for the set of 8 pieces, Nos. 598 to 605.


















Mr. P. O. Tremblay, who is now 30 years of age, commenced the hardware business in 1886, in partnership with Mr. Mathieu, under the style of Mathieu & Tremblay. On the 1st of May, 1893, Tremblay continued the business alone, at the old stand on Notre Dame Street. He became interested in Numismatics about fifteen years ago, and is well thought of among his confreres. In 1892 he, desiring to make himself better known among collectors, had 225 of the coins above illustrated, struck. The dies engraved by C. Tison, have been destroyed. R. 2.



Three hundred and twenty-five pieces were issued of this coin, by the same collector as issued the last, No. 606. The dies, also engraved by C. Tison, have been destroyed. R. 2.



In 1890 the "Montreal Witness" offered a series of prizes to be competed for among the common school children throughout the Dominion. The best story of some event relating to the county, in which the scholar lived, was to be the subject. Every scholar who complied received one of the tokens, one side of which is copied from the reverse of the Canadian Jeton of 1754, No. 514. Issue, about 2,300 in white metal, with a few in copper. The dies still exist. R. 1 ˝.



This piece was issued in 1891 for a similar competition as last, No. 608. Two thousand were struck in Aluminum. The design represents a Roman denarius of Tiberius. The obverse die is broken. R. 1 ˝.



This piece was .issued in 1888 by Sergeant A. Desjardins, then of the Montreal police force, to be used by Mr. Phelan. Five hundred were struck and used for a time as bread checks. The dies are destroyed. 3 varieties. R. 1 ˝.



This coin, which bears the name of L. Landry, was never ordered by him. Six of this and the following coin were sent to him, but he never learned whence they came. As a number more have since appeared in different metals and sold to collectors, we come to the conclusion that these coins were issued as a speculation, to be sold as a Numismatic novelty. R. 2.



Issued as last, No. 611. R. 2.




Issue 100 in brass, as good for one glass of St. Leon Water. The check is not now used. Mr. Hoerner is 41 years old, and has been doing business as a druggist in Three Rivers since 1872. (Composite dies.) R. 2.



Mr. Williams, who has been carrying on business as a druggist in Three Rivers since 1879, is now 40 years old. He has been collecting since 1874, but only actively since 1891. It was in the latter year that he had 1,000 of the above piece made to distribute it in the district of Three Rivers as a business advertisement, but on learning that they were picked up by commercial travelers, who carried them to collectors, he stopped distributing them after 400 had been sent out, keeping the balance. The dies are destroyed. R. 1 ˝.



Two hundred copies struck from composite dies. They were, for a time, used in Mr. Williams' Drug store, and accepted in payment of a glass of Caxton Water, but their use has been abandoned. Mr. Williams was the proprietor of the Caxton Springs. R. 1 ˝.



Struck in brass. About 500 issued in the Toronto agency, to be accepted in payment of a glass of St. Leon Water. The water is sold at two and a half cents per glass, and when five cents is tendered in payment, one of these checks was given in exchange. R. 1 ˝.



The company does not appear to have issued this check; it, was, no doubt, made a private speculation. R. 1 ˝.



Struck in white metal and brass. Used in the different agencies of the company. The dies were made in Toronto. R. 1.



Struck in aluminum and in brass. The dies were made in Toronto. R. 1.



Issue 100, by I. B. Durocher. These were never used in the hotel; a number of the checks were given away. This coin has sold as high as ten dollars. R. 3.



Issue 100, by Vital Raparie, who, for the last 19 years, kept a hotel at the corner of Notre Dame and Guy Streets, Montreal, and since the 11th of June last, has removed to 2276 Notre Dame Street. These were used as pool checks. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 200, by the same as last, No. 621, but these were never used in the hotel, as they were struck to sell to collectors. R. 1



Issue of 500 by the same as the last two, Nos. 621 and 622. R. 1.



Issue 200 by Francois Sylvestre for use in his hotel on St. Catherine St., Montreal. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 100 by Gideon Normandin, who keeps a hotel on Notre Dame St., in the Town of St. Henri, near Montreal. R. 1  ˝.



Issue 100 by the same as last, No. 625. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 100 by same as last two, Nos. 625 and 626. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 100 by Napoleon Tremblay, for use in his hotel on Notre Dame St., St. Henri. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 100 by Anatole Papineau, who succeeded to Nap. Tremblay. (See No. 628.) R. 1 ˝.



Issue 300 from composite dies. Mr. Laurin commenced to collect coins in 1890. The balance of these coins were purchased by Mr. P. N. Breton, Montreal. R. 1 ˝.



One hundred issued in 1890 from composite dies. The balance of these coins were purchased by Mr. P. N. Breton. Mr. Foley commenced to keep hotel in 1885. R. 1 ˝.



One hundred issued in 1889, from composite dies. Mr. Smith commenced business in 1867. These checks were only a short time in use. The balance were purchased by Mr. P. N. Breton. R. 1 ˝.



One hundred issued in 1891, from composite dies. Neveu retired from business in 1892. R. 1 ˝.



Mr. Archambault, who is now 27 years of age, commenced to collect in 1890. In 1892 he ordered this coin, hut as there were two mistakes in spelling the word "monnaie," which was written with only one "N," only twelve were struck, after which the dies were turned down to be used for the following coin, No. 635. Of these twelve pieces, nine were sold to Mr. P. N. Breton, of Montreal. R. 3 ˝.



Issue 55, by the same collector, to rectify the mistake on the last, No. 634. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 223 pieces. The dies were engraved by C. Tison, the coat of arms side is broken. Mr. Marchand, who is a member of the firm of Gareau & Marchand, dry goods merchants, commenced to collect in 1891. He is now 37 years of age. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 74 pieces, by the same. One of the dies is broken as in 636. Engraved by C. Tison. R. 2 ˝.



Issue 50 pieces. Gareau & Marchand keep two stores in Montreal, and customers who make purchases at the chief store, on St. Catherine Street, receive one of these checks, which are accepted at the Rachel street branch for the trimming of a lady's hat. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.




Issue of 50 be the same firm as the last, No. 638. It is good for the cost of cutting one suit. The dies, engraved by C. Tison, are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



This and the following seven tokens, Nos. 640 to 647, were issued by Mr. L. Gravel, to be exchanged for other coins among collectors. Mr. Gravel, who is 29 years of age, commenced collecting in 1889. Issue of 232. The dies were engraved by C. Tison, and the reverse side is broken. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies still exist. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 111 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 28 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1 ˝.



Issue 400 pieces by J. Lanctot, instead of Lanclot. R. 1.



This check is used at the "B" Battery Canteen, at Quebec. R. 2.



Used at the "B" Battery Canteen, as No. 649. R. 2.



Struck in aluminum in 1892, to be used as tickets on the steamer "Vega," to and from Longueuil and Montreal. This was a new opposition line. The above bears the card of W. Sclater & Co., who are interested in the company. R. 1.



Issue 200 from composite dies. These pieces are still used as bons for discount allowed to purchasers. R. 1.



Issue 100 in 1891, from composite dies. These are still in use. R. 1.



Kollmyer carried on business in Montreal, as a merchant tailor, thirty or forty years ago, and this piece, struck in copper, was probably used as buttons for a yacht club or some steam boat company. R. 4.



T. Bergeron has carried on business as a grocer in Montreal, since 1889. There were 25 of these Jetons struck from dies by C. Tison. These dies have been destroyed. The balance, thirteen in all, were purchased by Mr. J. O. Marchand. R. 3 ˝.



R. 1.



E. Caumartin has his bake house at 1205 St. Denis Street. This, and the following piece, were ordered through Mr. J. O. Marchand, who ordered 300, but, by mistake, gave Mr. Caumartin's old address. For this reason they were refused. The obverse die was altered for the two corrected checks, Nos. 659 and 660. Only 25 were struck. Dies by C. Tison. R. 1 ˝.



See note to No. 657. The order for 300 of this variety was completed before the error was discovered. R. 1 ˝.



Altered dies with correct number of street. Issue 25 pieces. The dies are still extant. R. 1.



Issue 300. (See note to No. 637.) The dies are still extant. R. 1.



Tellier & Co., vinegar manufacturers, of Sorel, ordered the dies of this piece from Tison, but did not accept them. They were purchased by Mr. J. 0. Marchand, who had twenty specimens in lead. The dies were altered to strike the following piece, No. 662. R. 2 ˝.



Issue 31 pieces by Mr. J. 0. Marchand, who altered the dies of No. 661. The dies broke after the above number had been struck. R. 3.




Struck in lead. Bacquet was a hotel-keeper in Quebec in 1832. His first place was on Market Square, Lower Town, later he removed to No. 2 St. Peter Street, in 1860, to No. 64 in the same street, and in 1861, to No. 9 Fort Street. This coin was unknown to collectors until a hoard came to light in 1892. R. 2 ˝.



Issue 100 by Mr. L. R. Baridon, druggist, of Montreal, to advertise his patent medicine "Baume Rhumal." Mr. Baridon had got together a very line collection of Canadian coins that in 1891 he sold to Mr. P. N. Breton. Since then he commenced a second collection, which has already become large and representative. The dies engraved by C. Tison are still extant. R. 1.



R. 1.



R. 1.



Issue 1,000 in 1893. Not in use. R. 1.



Issue 1,000 in 1893. Not in use. R. 1.



Contents & Directory

All images are illustrated approximately 1.5 X.


Includes - Table of rarities, Wampum & Card Money.

French Regime

Breton 501 to 519.


Breton 520 to 533.


L'Isle and Repentigny tokens.
Breton 534 to 557.


Breton 558 to 669.


The Bouquet Series.
Breton 670 to 716.


Breton 717 to 856.

Colonies in general

Province of Canada, Nova Scotia,

New Brunswick & Prince Edward Island.

Breton 857 to 924.


British Columbia, Dominion of Canada, 
Newfoundland, Anonymous and Miscellaneous
Breton 925 to 924.


Of the Principal Canadian Collectors.

Paper money


Back to Coinscan Main Directory


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