Circulating Counterfeit British Half Penny From the 1770's
in Good Or Better Condition!
A little over two-hundred years ago, you could hardly avoid getting stuck with counterfeit coins if you wanted to buy anything!
The small change circulating in the newly formed United States was almost exclusively British half pennies.
These big coins featured a bust of the king on the obverse, and Britannia seated on a globe on the reverse.
Genuine examples were scarce since minting had inexplicably stopped in 1775.
Counterfeiting of these coppers increased tremendously after the originals stopped being produced.
There was a lot of profit to be made, since underweight (20% to 50% lighter than regal issues) counterfeits could be made to simulate well-worn coins.
Some counterfeits were made in England and imported to the U.S. (evasion coppers) while others made right here in America.
Minting of counterfeit imitation British half pennies began openly in North Swansea, Massachusetts - a suburb of a city known then as Bungtown!
The counterfeits were passed throughout New England and acquired the name of "Bungtowns".
Soon, the term "Bungtown" came to be applied to all such counterfeits regardless of their origin.