What The Experts Say...

HT 262B, Low 117B The Low 177 Feuchtwanger Three Cent Token in white metal has long been considered a great rarity. The first published auction listing of the piece wass in New Netherlands 45th sale in 1955 where a BU soecimen was offered with the following comment by John Ford, "Excessively rare, but one other known to us, that in the collection of the Fulds. Ex-Kimball." Since that thime, we have offered two other pieces; this example which appeared as Lot #7 in our 1993 Auction Fifty Five and the Litman, Miller, Dupont specimen which appeared in our 2003 Litman Sale, #84
For well over 50 years both white metal and lead examples of Low 117 were considered by all authorities as significant HTT rarities and the various descriptive catalogs valued them as such. Then came the 2004 John Ford Sale, where the cataloger had the opportunity to examine three specimen at one time. The result of this examination was states in the Ford Sale as a note to Lot #210
"There are two white metal and one Lead Low 117's in the Ford COllection. The first two are pedigreed to F.C.C. BOYD before 1960 and M. Lipson in 1967, the lead proof to the Scovill sample group obtained by George Fuld in October,. 1959. George has noted that the Scovill group can be dated before 1870. That being the case, we can only suggest that theese were all cast before 1870 for casts they are (as John Ford though). Each piece is identically off center on each side, this being most noticeable on the reverse. Each shows the same strong and weak denticles in the same places. Each has a cluster of fused denticles on the obverse at 12:30. And each has an identical scratch above the eagle that slants downward toward the right. None of these characteristics are shared by any of the struck Feuchtwanger's composition pieces in the Ford Collection. We must conclude reluctantly, that the white metal and lead pieces in the Ford Collection are casts and we have, accordingly, with drawn them from this sale."
Although we were unable to compare this piece to the Ford specimens, it does conform generally to the above description, especially the fused denticles. It does not, however, appear to be off-center, on both sides. Because of their age (130+ years) and their place in the history of the collecting of Hard Times tokens, we think it appropriate to offer this specimen for sale withw the obvious caveats as expressed above.

(The Sara Hinckley Collection of Hard Times Tokens, PCAC Exonumia Auction #76, November 11, 2006)