*This was originally written on April 12th 2012, one of my first postings, and unmodified with the exception of the pictures are a bit different. Thanks for reading my writing. Enjoy.
Two surviving business strikes are known to exist from the original mintage of this coin/treasury Gold, and perhaps an “Ex-Jewelry” example that was sold was an impaired “Restrike Proof” made to look like a business strike. Was this “Ex-Jewelry” coin an impaired Restrike Proof or an original business strike? That’s the million dollar question. But certainly two are known to exist from the original striking mint issue.
The “Lion” design on the “Reverse” of this Gold was initially rejected by the Governor-General in Council during the mid Fall season of 1835. Almost one month later the Governor-General approved the “Reverse Lion” design to continue the die preparation(s) so the “One Mohur”, and “Two Mohurs/Gold Coinage” would not be delayed any further. What we can deduce from a number of sources is that the Calcutta mint minted roughly 1,000-1,174 “Double Mohurs” coinage in 1835/6. This coin/treasury Gold was never intended for circulation, and was mainly exchanged for silver by Merchants.
Trading rights to set up a port in Calcutta were granted to the East India Company (EIC) back in 1690 by Abul Muzaffar Muhy-ud-Din Muhammad Aurangzed Alamgir : one of SHAH JAHAN’S sons who imprisoned him, and forcefully took over the Mughal Empire’s Reign. This son is better known as “Aurangzeb”….which means “honoring the throne”. I beg to differ with that title bestowed upon him at a young age, and so would Shah Jahan from his grave. 145 years later The East India Company’s plan to establish a rate of exchange between silver and gold financially failed.
The EIC wanted to sort of be in the “Assay” business to probably play a game of “arbitrage” between the two precious metals. But, the EIC didn’t properly value/calculate the Gold/Silver ratio, and discounted that most Merchants preferred Silver for trade. Those Merchants were doing healthy business with the Chinese, and China is geographically located right around the corner from Calcutta. The Empire of China had massive silver reserves at the time, and gave it all back to the world’s biggest drug/opium cartel : The Ea$t India Company.
Essentially the Calcutta mint ended up with a boatload of Gold within the treasuries, and exchanged large amounts of Silver to the Mercantile trade. This leads me to believe Merchants were trading in gold to the EIC, and receiving Silver at a discount unbeknownst to the East India Company. But that topic needs to be further researched, and I speculate that the Merchants arbitraged the East India Company with Gold.
In any case, these scenarios bring me 1000 fold pleasure when so called “small money” armed with knowledge outwits “BIG MONEY” carrying very little knowledge, and arsenals of arrogance. The “Merchants” were a 5′ 7″ 208 lb MAURICE JONES-DREW from the NFL (National Football League), and the “EIC” a 6’4″ 250 lb Linebacker in the same game. Meaning the Linebacker has no chance from the beginning against the smaller player.
Anyways, the result of this endeavor was: rapid financial loss for this particular pecuniary…Making money makes you lose money sometimes even if you are the one making the money. In 1836 the British Government bought all the Gold reserves from the EIC Mint so this untimely venture did not continue losing money. More than likely most of this mintage was melted with the rest of the treasury gold that was stockpiled for a few months.
The Government continued the practice of “Restriking” this coin for many years because of growing collector demand, and sometimes offered the coin as a presentation piece. Minting of all East India and British India “Restrikes” ceased in 1970 at the Bombay Mint because of political pressures primarily by the Australian Government, and so the dies were destroyed in 1971/72. These 1835 TWO MOHURS coins are all “Restrikes”, and there are examples graded by NGC and PCGS as “PR” or “PF” designated as “Proof”. But this coin should never receive a grade of “Proof”, and only a “PL” or “Proof Like” grade should be assigned to any of these Two Mohurs. Also, there is no expert that can pinpoint any specific year this coin was struck as a “Proof” nor are there any concrete mint records that translate into an actual “Proof” which we can witness. The “Restriking” mintage is a mystery nobody will ever solve without concrete mint records.
These coins should all carry a grade of “PL” or “Prooflike” as mentioned before. There is another theory : the lesser the number of hairlines on the surface the earlier the striking comes to mind. There is one problem with this theory : what if there were multiple dies polished at different times? What an expert can guesstimate is when a particular coin may have been restruck : was it an “Early Restiking” or “Mid Restriking” or “Later Restriking” due to the characteristics of the coin. To date there has not been an 1835 Two Mohurs “Original Proof” or “Early Restrike” that has been recorded to my knowledge, and even if an “Original Proof” were to surface it’s probably a RESTRIKE!
*This information was cited from a number of sources:
Fred Pridmore: The Coins of the British Commonwealth of Nations, Krause, Vikram Deshmukh, Myself, NGC, PCGS, COIN PRICES MARCH 2011, Wikipedia, and Google.
SIZE : 32.5 MM
TYPE : RESTRIKE
MINT : CALCUTTA
POPULARITY : HIGH
WEIGHT : 23.32 GRAMS
METAL : 91.7% GOLD AND 8.3% COPPER
LAST PRICE PAID FOR THIS COIN “RAW” OR “UNGRADED” ON FEBRUARY 18th 2012 : $28,000+ as listed below
LAST AUCTION THIS COIN CROSSED : http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/article2910682.ece?homepage=true
*Originally drafted on August 27th 2014 4:21 PM. Thanks for reading my thoughts if you do, and this includes mistakes and all.
So where did I leave off. Oh yeah-
P A R T 2
My descriptions on eBay never forced anyone to buy anything. Ever. How could I? My auctions were almost all generally no reserve, started at a penny, and the market controls the price. How did I control the price? By selling British India Coins for a little over two sequential years? By blocking people that were artificially boosting prices I suspected, and not allowing them to bid? My eBay “me” page clearly described “illiquid markets”, and when my risk decisions go bad I have the luxury of blaming one guy : me-
In spite of all the above information, risks of trading, and characteristics of risk that can be read almost anywhere on the internet. I was recently told by one collector on one occasion (and another time as well) that I was responsible for the downturn in the British India Coin market acorrding to someone he spoke with. Who : lost money. Tomorrow I will be crashing Nasdaq, and the S&P so please buy puts. Short the market! I’ve never heard more ridiculous talk about anything, and I think the crap is funny.
This guy blamed me for losing quite a tidy sum of money. But then again I had warned someone else about listening to someone in their teens for speculative advice. Because I wasn’t that specific teen myself but was a young man in his late 20’s giving speculative advice, and it ended in absolute disaster. Maybe another guy, and his cohort also blamed me as well. Which I think is very amusing. Blame me for all of your problems as well.
These buyers never thought ahead that since there was swooning interest, rising prices, that more coins wouldn’t come into the marketplace, and the David Fore Collections would siphon massive amounts of money from everyone’s pocketbooks. Not only did I describe this scenario in Part One above, but had given my thoughts about prices. I always mentioned these remarks in subtle ways. Because it is my responsibility to know what I project, and others should make their own projections.
Now remember the guy I described above in Part One that I suspected manipulated the Chinese coin market? Wonder if he had a hand in this market? Wonder if he employed the same strategies to create a mini massive boom, and bust cycle within the British India Coin market. There was a buyer that I had blocked in addition to his 7+ cronies he used to employ these strategies above? Whenever I mentioned this to anybody there was only one guy that ever believed me.
The rest just thought I was crackers, crazy, but some of those guys sided with his logic, and they paid dearly. Because he was “educated”, I was not, and boy that guy sure did give them an education. Maybe some of those folks can pray to the heavens, the man upstairs, whoever that may be for anyone, that the prices will come back to what they paid or greater, and they can sell.
I guess what many didn’t realize at the time is that if I did let this person propel the market higher. The downturn would have been much worse than now or the losses would have been much greater, and sure I would have had greater profits. Has anybody seen the Chinese coin prices lately for common coins? OH MY MAN UPSTAIRS…..On top of that it wasn’t fair to my consumer base. I could give a damn less about who else ran their business their way, but I would not allow manipulation in my eBay auctions. I did everything in my power to keep prices at bay without his greedy hand going into the cookie jar.
Sooner or later “manipulato” got people to join him in his quest to boost prices, and essentially derailed my vision of fair competition. It was easy for him to recruit people. He only needed one person that didn’t like me, for the record I don’t give a damn who likes me, and then it would snowball into two separate camps. I always remember a line from a song, “If you were to govern or rule a certain industry. Right now this whole room would be in misery.”
I never ruled or governed anything, but I planned much better than my competition. Which was nonexistent at the time because there was no market at all almost on ebay. I took the risk, and it worked out. But it could have blown up in my face dearly, and I would have suffered heavy losses. Think anyone would have tried to friend me then or ask me for advice? Hell no-
sooner or later I was at a point where I gave no information to anybody. Not that I was privy to information before anybody, but they were my thoughts, from my experiences, data points, research, and I work for no one. Be that my trading ideas were right or wrong didn’t matter me, and I presented data available to everybody as well in the past for risk buying decision. Luck does have to prevail as well quite often, and speculation is ever changing. I did freely share information in the the first year of trading coins. But that came back to haunt me in the future.
Note to self : there are no friends in competition for money, and competing for the best of anything in life. Second place means you lose. But that’s how life works, and I know I paid dearly many times financially. It’s tuition guys, for a lifelong education that never stops, and now I trust nobody. Nor do I communicate with anybody on a frequent basis as I once did.
My last eBay sale was 2013 or September. Matter of fact is was September, and a regular client tried to scam me. Because I blocked him, and he was colluding with others to manipulate prices. Probably with the same guy that I suspected colluding a year earlier. He won an auction under a newly created eBay username, and paid immediately. What the moron failed to do is put a street address into the eBay side of the user name. This went on for a few days, of course eBay sided with me, and case closed after some correspondence.
Someone with all the time on their hands, and no brains formulated this brilliant scheme. Which backfired, and I laughed so hard when he forgot to put the street address into his genius plan. He must have been practicing theses strategies from Homer Simpson “DOH” for many years as the negative feedback was removed, and good riddance of two headaches at once.
What was even crazier is the guy that was using another guy to do his dirty work was a regular buyer from me. I stopped selling to him because I suspected he was communicating with someone that I thought was trying to milk information from me indirectly, and more specifically the guy who had been trying to manipulate the market. Call me paranoid. Many did. But I was right. It took some time for my thoughts to transpire, but he eventually choose poorly as his puppeteers. He was their “chumcho” or danced as they said. But this is a young guy trying to make some cash, and money is blinding. Especially if you need some-
That last sale was the last straw for me, and I decided to close up shop on ebay. I sold British India and Republic coins for almost 24-27 months. It was time for me to go as I didn’t need these headaches anymore. I needed a break from one person telling me “to die” over and over,people getting pissed because I would not share my supply with them, reveal sources, multiple people accusing me of fixing prices, the drama, the drama between two cousins, and it all got old. I thought : really? Is this what this is about? I had every intention of returning to ebay, but sided against it, and soon it will be almost exactly one year. I don’t have time to babysit.
The final coin I sold for $200+ I donated the money to a charity via eBay. Here is the description I had written :
I can’t end an auction on November 10th 2013 because i’ll be in India, and can end an auction on September 8th in your spirit. It’s a month or so before your one year anniversary homegirl that the United Nations declared November 10th as “Malala Day”. I’m leaving my home on September 12th to travel near London, and that was the place of your recovery that took place last year. I’m requesting the person who wins this auction to please pay immediately as I’m not going to be here to ship the item after the 11th of September. “0” bidders are NOT welcome, and those that are blocked are not welcome either. Respect my terms. Please visit this auction more than once you “Toning Freaks” and “Nons” to show your support to Malala as the “hit counter” at the bottom of the page will increase every time you or anybody you tell revisits this auction. This auction I encourage bidders to bid it to the moon!
So anyways, I hope your recovery has been well, and It’s almost time for “Malala Day” again. We should have had this day probably from the beginning of time. But it’s easy to be one of my friends Hindsight Harry or Hindsight Henry. Both of these names are in my phone of my friends that always say “could have should have would have”, and I do the same thing at times. It’s really f&$kin sad that your life had almost been taken away from your family, and all of us throughout the world who never knew you. Even though I didn’t know anything about you, I heard there was an attempt on your life, I teared up, two different times, and read more about you. I read about how your father was a great influence in shaping your values, and how you wanted to be a Dr.
It pissed me off so much what those people did to you that I wanted to do the same thing to them as they had done to you in my mind, and that wouldn’t be right. Nor am I like them at all. If I was I would be like them “Latifah” HomeGirl which in Arabic means “delicate” and “very kind”. I can’t believe how selfish people can/could be when they can’t have their way. But you, a brave young soul/girl that is a fraction of their age combated unfairness with her unselfish convictions, and did it with wisdom. Non Violent Educational Awareness. You know there were a couple of other sages that professed the same principles as you Malala. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. come to mind. “Mahatma” which means “great soul” is a title which he bestowed on you as well. How do I know this? I was sitting with him while he was spinning cotton on his Charkha at Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad in my imagination, he told me to tell you that his soul shines on you, and he still lives through you in the conscience world.
I CAN believe how you stood up to inequality as wisdom sometimes isn’t measured in age. Yet should be measured by “The Content of His/Her Character” like Dr. King once said before he was assassinated. You stood up to those bullies who are bullies for no reason, and here cometh the long overdue change for ya’ll. Don’t worry about them, and I know you don’t/never did. They are a bunch of “haters” that drink “HATERADE” for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I hope you become whatever your educational heart desires, what a great stance you have taken for the women of your country, and humanity in general. Maybe the government of Syria could learn to be strong and not oppress the weak like Hammurabi stated in his code. You touched my soul homegirl. I’m gonna put my money where my mouth is homegirl. I’m gonna donate 100% of the proceeds of this coin/auction to EQUALITY NOW in New York. I can’t get the funds to you directly, but in spirit i’ll get the money to a place that believes in the following:
“Equality Now works to end violence and discrimination against women and girls around the world through the mobilization of public pressure. Issues of concern to Equality Now include: rape, domestic violence, reproductive rights, trafficking, female genital mutilation, political participation and gender discrimination.”
Malala. Keep spreading that positiveness with the one thing as you have from the beginning: awareness/education
Someday Malala I’m gonna do something as brave/great as you, i’m gonna strive to do it, and thanks for inspiring me. I’ll never forget you, and neither will this world. Good thing you didn’t end up a martyr like Martin, like Mohandas, the world needs more Malalas here today, and going forward. You be that Dr. you wanna be homegirl, and Dr. King is smiling at you as well Malala. My imagination played chess with him yesterday, he checkmated me in 23 moves, and he told me that he is proud of you Malala. Thanks for inspiring all of us, I’m starting to tear up again, and I gotta go.
What I could never grasp was how a single 1938 MS 65 Rupee sold for $3000 at Steven Album’s auction. At that point I suspected the market had peaked. But then again that’s how a market functions, fluctuates, and there were literally two guys pumping the hell out of that date. Could it be the puppet, and his master? “Anything is possible.” His favorite saying I mean someone’s saying. Anyways. In addition to : 1911, 1921, and 1922 in not such high grades. They were common in certain grades, but not so common in gem grades at the time.
To show what a good sport I was I unblocked two guys that had tried to manipulate the market in the first place. Why? Because the market couldn’t climb any further, and I knew the price action made no sense to them. But they bought very lightly, and sold common coins when they could for big money by really screwing anyone they could. The “chumcho” was buying 1918 India Gold Sovereigns from one guy, and had to have taken a bath if he held the for a long period. His money supply as a trader was waning, it does take large bankroll to trade coins most of the time, and the market was slowly declining.
With people losing interest, and prices slumping. We were about to enter the third part of the David Fore sale. Everybody was waiting for business strikes, and needless to say the line up was quite disappointing. Most of my purchases were made in the first sale as I thought Original PROOF coins offered great potential for the future. Patterns I stayed away from because they have a very limited market, that’s what my data said, and they have lost some value as well but you never know with thin markets. Restrikes have gotten absolutely buried, and one collector told me there were thousands of them back in 2012. He was right as I sold most my restrikes in the fall of 2012.
Once the Fore auctions were over it seemed that the prices were ready to stabilize. But too much supply had entered the marketplace, and there would be a slew of coins on eBay from one seller which probably spooked many buyers from absorbing more coins. Many may have said to themselves : Why are there 2 William RS 1/2 Rupee’s for sale in two weeks? It really was crazy what was available in a two week period, but that’s how a collectables market functions. The supply is as random as the price swings. Nobody really knows what will show up at any given time, and what will happen.
Nowadays I still buy and sell coins. Indian coins are not as active as they once were for a number of reasons. The BSE or Indian Stock Market has been rising from many years of depressed levels, and new political hope. Hence many speculators lost interest or dumped coin holdings. It’s absolutely evident in the Republic India Proof set market where prices took a major hit. Next came a slow erosion of Victoria and George 5th Rupees. George 5th may have taken the worst beating, and sure someone could do an analysis. But then again that’s how a market functions, and what goes up must come down.
As a speculator there are less opportunities or value in British India as I see it today than before. It’s less liquid for certain, unless something is really rare. I still find value from time to time but have added very little in comparison to my holdings as compared in the past. On a side note, Randy Weir did sell his 1911 India Proof set. I saw it in his case at the beginning of the Chicago ANA, and mid way through. It was gone, and it was sold-