A 50 cent flea market find has been certified as a rare 1776 pewter Continental Currency dollar valued at $97,500. The buyer spotted it in a junk box full of assorted coins at a market in Northern France in June 2018. He was curious about this unusual American piece and agreed to shell out half a euro (56 American cents)...More info at The History Blog.
Both obverse and reverse were designed by Benjamin Franklin. The inscriptions and iconography on the obverse were meant to be read as a rebus. Fugio, meaning “I flee” in Latin, connects to the sun which casts shadow on the sundial. “Mind your business” didn’t mean what it means now. It’s literal, as in “see to your business interests.” All together, the obverse advises that time is fleeting, so mind your business. The reverse is an appeal for unity among states rendered as a linked chain.
Unable to secure anything like the amount of silver necessary for coinage issue, the Continental Currency coin never was circulated. They went with paper money instead, and it was an unmitigated disaster of devaluation and counterfeiting.
03 March 2020
Fugio cent bought for 50c from a junk box at a flea market