Update

New-York Historical is temporarily closed to help contain the spread of COVID-19. On August 14, we're opening Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine, a free, outdoor exhibition in our rear courtyard. See more details on our Visit page.

Civil War token

Object Number: 
INV.13784.4
Date: 
1863
Medium: 
Copper
Dimensions: 
Overall: 3/4 in. ( 1.9 cm )
Description: 
Copper token; depiction of Knickerbocker figure in center of reverse; obverse "KNICKERBOCKER / CURRENCY" reverse "GOOD FOR / 1 / CENT"
Gallery Label: 
During the Civil War, there were no metallic coins of any denomination in circulation. Tradesman were thus forced to issue a medium that would supply the place of small coins. The first to be made in New York was the Lindenmueller, and followed by the Knickerbocker currency, which consisted of numerous varieties, and were struck in large quantities. The irresponsible nature of these tokens forced Congress to pass an act in 1864, forbidding private individuals to issue any form of money.
Credit Line: 
Gift of Mrs. Gordon Whitman
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group