Proof 1927 Canberra Florin


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1927-Canberra-Florin-B-Obverse-August-2019
Proof 1927 Canberra Florin
COIN
Proof 1927 Canberra Florin
QUALITY
Superb FDC. A brilliant proof with stunning iridescent colours and one of the finest we have handled.
PROVENANCE
Private Collection Sydney
PRICE
$35,000
COMMENTS
The extreme scarcity of quality Proof Canberra Florins is out of sync with the suggested mintage of 400. Which is why we have done some additional research, working our way through old journals and manuscripts. We now know that while Melbourne Mint records show a mintage of 400, it is generally accepted that the issue was not a sell-out and a significant number of proofs were re-melted after failing to find a home. According to respected author Greg McDonald, the actual figure could be as low as 150.
STATUS
Available now
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Famed London coin dealers, A. H. Baldwin & Sons Ltd, was founded in 1872 by Albert Henry Baldwin. Respected the world over, Baldwin was perceptive and understood the mindset of his fellow collectors.

He had the foresight to acquire twenty-five of the Proof Canberra Florins out of the original mintage of 400. The coins were archived by Baldwins for nearly sixty years before the company trickled them out into the Australian marketplace.

QUESTION. What inherent qualities did the Canberra Florin have that prompted Baldwins to take up more than 6 per cent of the mintage?

STATUS.
Baldwin knew that the Proof 1927 Canberra Florin was the very first proof issue struck for Australian collectors.

HISTORY.
Baldwin would also have been aware that the coin was minted for one of the most significant events in Australia’s journey to nationhood. The opening of the nation’s first Parliamentary buildings in the national capital. He had the experience of dealing in English coins to know that history counted and that the Proof Canberra Florin would have an everlasting appeal.

RARITY.
The Proof 1927 Canberra Florin was destined for greatness. Baldwin must have perceived that the mintage of 400 was tiny.

History has shown us that Baldwin was correct on all counts.

STATUS.
Not only the very first proof issue struck for collectors, the Proof Canberra Florin was the only proof issue of that decade minted for collectors.

HISTORY.
While Federation occurred in 1901, Federal Parliament sat in temporary accommodation for twenty-six years in Victoria. The opening of Parliament House in Canberra was a big deal, a milestone in Australia’s pathway to unity. Officiated by the Duke of York (later King George VI), the formal opening of Parliament House was broadcast to more than one million people via radio stations in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. History is the crucial element for underpinning continuity of demand in the numismatic industry. Baldwin knew it. And we know it. History truly counts.

RARITY.
While Melbourne Mint records show a mintage of 400, it is generally accepted that the issue was not a sell-out and a significant number of proofs were re-melted after failing to find a home. According to respected author Greg McDonald, the actual figure could be as low as 150. The proofs were sold without a case, thereby introducing the possibility of mishandling. So for the buyer that makes quality a priority, the waiting time for a really nice Proof 1927 Canberra Florin to come along may be twelve months. Or even longer.

 

So what makes a top Canberra? A coin such as the piece offered here.

The first thing we do when we check out a proof coin is to look at it with the naked eye.

  • Move the coin through the light and allow the light to reflect off the fields.
  • On both obverse and reverse this Proof 1927 Canberra Florin has superb highly reflective fields. It is as though you are looking at a mirror.
  • On the reverse, the royal blue peripheral toning on top left and golden peripheral toning on bottom right is magnificent. The golden peripheral toning continues on the obverse and is stunning, highlighting the detailed portrait of King George V.
  • The edges are impeccable.
  • This Proof 1927 Canberra Florin is a superb proof and an exceptional coin.

Having checked out the coin with the naked eye, we then take it under a magnifying glass.

  • The striations, between the 'ONE' in the legend and the oval containing the date 1927, are strong.  This tells us is that the dies were well prepared, brushed with a wire-brush to ensure they were sharp.
  • Vertical striations on the obverse are similarly distinct and strong.
  • Heavy striations equates to well brushed dies. Well brushed dies equates to a razor sharp, three dimensional coin design.
  • We always look at the tell-tale steps of Parliament House on the Proof Canberra Florins ... one, two or three. And this coin has the three Parliamentary steps. It's the sign of a great coin.
  • And the fields are unblemished.

Summary statement on this classic investment piece.

This Proof 1927 Canberra Florin is well struck with a sharp three dimensional design. The coin has been brilliantly preserved and is an exception to those most commonly sighted.

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The Journey to Parliament House Canberra

Australia’s six colonies were united under the name Commonwealth of Australia on 1 January 1901. Some of the consequences of Federation, however, did not come to fruition until many, many years later. 

Australia’s Commonwealth silver coinage was not introduced until 1910, our Commonwealth pennies and halfpennies were issued one year later. Our national pride took a bit of a dent when it was realized that Australia’s mints were ill-equipped to strike the nation’s coinage, so our currency had to be struck overseas.

More than a decade after Federation in 1911, Parliament decided on the location of our national capital, Canberra. Three years later, the Government launched a design competition for a permanent Federal Parliament House. The project was suspended due to the outbreak of war and further attempts to revive the project were stifled due to monetary concerns regarding Australia’s war debt.

In 1923 the Government re-started the Parliament House project, with building commencing one year later. 

Federal Parliament, that had been sitting for twenty-six years in temporary accommodation in Spring Street, Melbourne, took up brand new space in Canberra on 9 May 1927 in Australia’s first purpose built Federal Parliamentary building. 

The opening of Parliament House in Canberra was a milestone in Australia’s pathway to unity. And it was a big deal. Officiated by the Duke of York (later King George VI), the formal opening of Parliament House was broadcast to more than one million people via radio stations in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. 

The Federal Government took every opportunity to boast its achievements and used currency as an effective conduit. One million florins featuring Parliament House Canberra were struck at the Melbourne Mint and released into circulation.

A further 400 1927 Canberra Florins were struck by the mint to proof quality and sold to collectors.


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