Coin, 4 Reales
Origin: Sub-America, Bolivia, Potosi
Diameter: 29 mm
Weight: 13.17 grams
Gift of the Lasser family
Acc. No. 1996-872,50
Coin, 4 Reales.
Label:When an Anglo-American force set out to capture Quebec from the French in 1711, HMS Feversham, delayed in New York harbor, never got word that the mission was called off. While attempting to catch up with the rest of the fleet, it sank in a storm off Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, with the loss of about 100 lives.
While the Feversham wasn't a treasure ship, it did carry treasure. The money once in the purser's chest is a cross section of New York City pocket change from 1711. Brought to the surface in the 1980s, a wide variety of coins were found on the wreck site, including Spanish-American, Dutch, English, and Massachusetts silver coins.
Coins found to be underweight were pierced so their weight wasn't reduced further (drilling would remove metal). Then a plug of appropriate metal was inserted into the hole and crushed into place with a few blows from a hammer, as was clearly the case with this 4 reales piece.
Provenance:Christie's, #978, 2/7/1989. From The Wreck of H.M.S. Feversham, Feburuary 7, 1989.