Hard Times Token – 1835 Bucklin’s Book Keeping & Interest Tables

This token was minted in 1835. It’s been around the block a few times since then, and I would grade it About Good (AG3). And that’s probably being generous.

The obverse shows a wreath around an odd fraction: “Troy” over the denomination of a bust facing left in profile. The circumference of the obverse reads: “Bucklin’s Book Keeping” clockwise from 11:00 to 8:00.

Token - 1835 - Hard Times - Bucklin's Interest Tables Token Obverse

Token – 1835 – Hard Times – Bucklin’s Interest Tables Token Obverse

The reverse also shows a wreath around a fraction: “1835 / T*”. The circumference of the obverse reads: “Bucklin’s Interest Tables” clockwise from 6:30 to 5:30. The T is pretty well gone on my example, but it’s the mark that sets this token apart from a very similar other issue.

Token - 1835 - Hard Times - Bucklin's Interest Tables Token Reverse

Token – 1835 – Hard Times – Bucklin’s Interest Tables Token Reverse

Identification code: HT-353 or HT-354 (not sure which, but 354 may simply be a more worn version of 353 without the T below the date due to die damage)

Date: 1835

Mintage: unknown (but fairly small) R-3 (Sheldon: 201-500)

Composition: Copper (possibly bronze)

Size: 27mm

Weight: unknown

Other details: According to a resource I found on PCGS: These tokens were issued by Isaac B. Bucklin, of Troy, New York. Bucklin was a school teacher,and he lived in West Troy. Bucklin furnished special instruction in bookkeeping and also engaged in printing and selling the 19th century equivalent of calculators: devices called interest tables. From 1839 on he was a stove dealer at 221 River Street in Troy.

Bucklin made several different tokens to advertise his business (and, presumably make some money on the side). Many of these tokens advertised his “Bucklin’s Bookkeeping Simplified,” with the date 1834. According to the token, this system SHOWS ONE VIEW THE EXACT STATE OF YOUR BUSINESS. The reverse of the piece described as Low 77 states: BUCKLINS INTEREST TABLES. 100 DOLLARS FOR DETECTING AN ERROR OF 1 CENT. SHOWS THE INTEREST AT A GLANCE OF ANY SUM FOR ANY TIME AT 6 AND 7 PER CENT. PRICED FROM 25 CENTS TO 2 DOLLARS.

Here are pictures and details of several of the other tokens Isaac Bucklin produced, including

HT 348 / Low 77
HT 353 / Low 92
HT 354 / Low 92A
HT 355  / Low 93
HT 357A / Low 145

Estimated Value: $10-20

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