There is so much more to the Square Penny than just the date. The style of the kookaburra and the style of the lettering is critical to assessing its rarity for while all Square Pennies are rare, some designs are far rarer than others. And this 1921 Square Penny is noted for its rarity.
The Melbourne Mint tested two different kookaburra designs in 1921: one featuring a sleek kookaburra sitting on a twig, the other a plump, well fed bird resting on a thicker branch. The latter type, designated the Renniks Type 12, is relatively readily available … the former, this coin, is extremely scarce.
There is another advantage to this design style of Square Penny. The Renniks 11 Square Pennies have proof-like, highly reflective surfaces. So not only is it rare, it is a very attractive and aesthetically appealing coin.
The swell of popularity for the Square Penny and Halfpenny began in the 1950s. The demand for the coin continues to this day. And that’s comforting for new buyers entering the market.
Between 1919 and 1921, the Australian Government undertook trials to replace the traditional round copper penny and halfpenny with a square shaped cupro-nickel coin. To add a distinctly Australian flavour to the nation’s coinage, the Government chose a kookaburra design.
Shape, innovative metal, history, rarity and growth … all factors that have combined to make the Square Penny and Halfpenny series one of Australia’s most popular.