Aug 292011

The Wallabies great victory over the All Blacks at the weekend won them the Tri-Nations series for the first time in a decade and suggests that the 2011 Rugby World Cup is now wide open.

Struck from 1oz of 99.9% pure silver in proof quality, this coin is the perfect way to celebrate the Wallabies return to form.

Made by The Perth Mint and issued as Australian legal tender, Wallabies – Men of Gold is the official coin of the Australian Rugby Union.

With only 5,000 in the mintage, now could be the time to get ahead of the pack and secure yours!

Aug 252011

A team of U.S. archaeologists believe they have uncovered the flagship of 17th century pirate Sir Henry Morgan.

Born in Wales around 1635, Morgan was in fact a privateer who had the backing of the English crown to plunder wealthy Spanish cities in the Americas.

His actions gained him the reputation of a barbarous pirate who engaged in the use of much cruelty and torture.

The Satisfaction was one of five vessels in Morgan’s fleet that sank 340 year ago during a raid to capture the fort known as Castillo de San Lorenzo, near Panama City.

After months of digging in mud and sand, the archaeologists from Texas State University have uncovered roughly 50 feet of her starboard side, along with numerous unopened cargo boxes and several chests.

Morgan is one of five notorious seafaring raiders featured by The Perth Mint on its popular series of Young Collectors $1 Pirate coins. The others are William Kidd, Calico Jack, Black Bart, and Blackbeard, whose ship Queen Anne’s Revenge was recently found off the coast of North Carolina.

Aug 232011

As we publish this alert there are about 150 of these miniature wildlife sets for sale via The Perth Mint website.

A maximum of 2,000 were created as coin show specials for last week’s 2011 ANA World’s Fair of Money in Chicago.

Appropriately entitled ‘Little Aussies’, the set includes a 2011 Australian Koala coin struck from 1/10oz of 99.9% pure silver and a 2011 Mini Roo coin struck from 0.5g of 99.99% pure gold.

Costing just $65, the highly-attractive one-off set is housed on an illustrated presentation card portraying the Aussie animal icons.

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Aug 182011

London has been in the news for all the wrong reasons lately so these art-deco bronze medallions and plaquettes are marvellous reminders of the city’s graciousness.

Resting in The Perth Mint’s historic coin and medallion collection, they presented no obvious provenance. Appeals to the Victorian Museum and the Museum of London revealed little information. On the quest of uncovering the mystery, envoys (read emails) were sent to the four corners of the earth!

We are able to reveal that they were made for The British Empire Exhibition 1924 – 25, held at Wembley to showcase the finest in art, commerce and scientific achievements. They’re representative of around 200 pieces created at that time – either officially, by private businesses or as the result of competitions. Many were actually made at the Exhibition.

Architectural gems featured on this selection comprise the Palace of Westminster, the Tower of London and Tower Bridge, the National Gallery and St Martin’s in the Fields Church at Trafalgar Square, and St Paul’s Cathedral.

Information courtesy Trevor I Harris – The Medals and Medallions of The British Empire Exhibition

Aug 122011

Five 2011 Celebrate Australia $1 coins have been released this month bearing new designs inspired by Australia’s World Heritage Sites.

Wet Tropics of Queensland

Where is it? Between Townsville and Cooktown on the north-east coast of Queensland.
What’s there? Rugged topography made up largely of tropical rainforests, including the world renowned Daintree National Park.
Why is it special? It has Australia’s greatest diversity of animals and plants within an area of just 0.26% of the continent. Many species are found nowhere else in the world.

Macquarie Island

Where is it? In the Southern Ocean, 1,500km south-east of Tasmania.
What’s there? The island’s unique natural diversity is home to much wildlife, including seals and millions of penguins and other seabirds during the breeding season.
Why is it special? It’s the only place on Earth where rocks from the planet’s mantle are being exposed above sea level.

Gondwana Rainforests

Where is it? Predominantly along the Great Escarpment on Australia’s east coast between Boonah in Queensland to Gloucester in NSW.
What’s there? A patchwork of parks and reserves containing five different types of rainforest.
Why is it special? It contains the world’s largest swathes of sub-tropical rainforest and habitats for many rare and threatened plants, animals and ancient life forms.

Australian Fossil Mammal Sites

Where is it? Two discrete locations: Naracoorte in South Australia and Riversleigh in Queensland.
What’s there? Exceptional fossil records of outstanding diversity and quality providing evidence of key stages in the evolution of Australia’s fauna.
Why is it special? Ranked among the world’s 10 greatest fossil sites.

Purnululu National Park

Where is it? 100 kilometres south of Lake Argyle in north-eastern Western Australia.
What’s there? The Bungle Bungle Range, composed of quartz sandstone which has been eroded for millions of years.
Why is it special? The beehive-shaped, banded towers are considered the most outstanding examples of such formations in the world.

Aug 042011

The auction of an historic set of gold scales originally used by The Perth Mint has raised an astonishing $105,000. Heavy equipment supplier WesTrac made the winning bid during this week’s Diggers and Dealers Conference in Kalgoorlie. The proceeds were generously donated to the Western Australian School of Mines by former owner Guy Travis.

A similar set of scales can be seen in this photograph taken at The Perth Mint in 1907 when the large gold bullion bars scattered across the desk were reputedly worth £120,000!

Gentlemen of the Mint weigh gold bars in 1907.