Colonials : Pre-1776 States Coinage : Maryland Coins

Obverse of Maryland 6Pence Lord Baltimore Reverse of Maryland 6Pence Lord Baltimore

Ron Guth: The Colonial coins of Maryland were issued as part of a private coinage by Cecil Calvert, the second Lord Baltimore, sometime in 1658-1659 and possibly later.  Calvert became heir in 1632 to a huge expanse of land that later became Maryland.  He believed his Royal Charter permitted him to strike coins, which were needed to help stabilize Maryland's agrarian economy.  However, once the coins were issued, Calvert was ordered arrested and some (or perhaps all) of his coins and equipment were confiscated.  No record of the proceedings against Calvert have been uncovered, but the existence of the coins and the fact that Calvert lived until 1675 indicate that he prevailed.  All of the coins are scarce to rare today, and the copper Penny (considered a Pattern) is extremely rare.

On November 13-14, 2002, the London auction firm of Morton & Eden, Ltd. sold a group of 19 Baltimore Sixpence coins for a total price of $222,122.00.  Included in the sale was Lot 785, a "Small Bust" Sixpence (Dies 2-D) that sold for $50,379.00.  A late state of Dies 2-B sold for $17,093.00 and another example of Dies 2-B with heavy clashing above the bust sold for $15,295.00.

Penny (or Denarium) - Extremely Rare
Fourpence - Rare
Sixpence - Rare
Shilling - Scarce