85 years in the biz, and other rarities
It’s a rare family business that grows from strength to strength over a course of 85 years – and at Downies Coins, it’s something we’re incredibly thankful for. So last week, we took an equally rare opportunity to stop, reflect and celebrate. Joined by some of our customers in the Southgate store, we were particularly honoured to play ho..
A Magical Tribute: A Childhood favourite immortalised in stunning legal tender.
When Hush the possum wants to be made invisible, she turns to bush magic veteran Grandma Poss for help. But making Hush visible again proves easier said than done… First published in 1983, Possum Magic is equal parts children’s book and literary phenomenon. Millions have been sold. Multiple generations of kids have been soothed to sleep with..
A Champion’s Golden Legacy: Jesse Owens’ Olympic medals go to auction
After the sale of one of Jesse Owens’ 1936 Berlin Olympics Gold Medals at auction in 2013 – where it sold for a world record price of nearly US$1.5m – two more of the champion’s 1936 Gold Medals will soon go under the hammer. An eagerly anticipated event in the field of Olympic memorabilia, the history behind these important medals is just ..
1787 Silver Sixpence
The ONLY sixpence date struck from 1758 until the Great Recoinage of 1816, toward the end of the reign of King George III (1760-1820), the 1787 Sixpence is a fundamental element of Australia’s currency history. Why? Because the 1787 Sixpence was an utterly crucial coin in Australia’s colonial economy in the earliest days after European Settleme..
Hidden Messages, Secret Codes, German Spies … Or Just Resourceful Internees? Part 2
Hidden Codes Revealed During the chaos of WWII, the town of Hay in NSW played host to thousands of internees. These included the civilian refugees placed in the now-infamous Camp Seven, who developed their own ingenious internal currency system now prized by collectors today. But was there more to the story behind these banknotes? In Part 2 of..
Hidden Messages, Secret Codes, German Spies … Or Just Resourceful Internees? Part 1
WWII was a well-documented and chaotic point in world history. Among the many stories to arise from that time, a perhaps lesser-known - but unique episode of European and Australian significance took place close to home, right here on Australian soil. In New South Wales – in the town of Hay, to be exact – the town’s Internment Camp Seven ..
Diana, Princess of Wales: a tribute
She was a philanthropist, a patron, and in many ways, a trailblazer. She was adored by many and admired across the globe. She also happened to be a Princess. It’s almost impossible to encapsulate the legacy of the late Diana, Princess of Wales. As 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of her tragic death, Downies is proud to present a celebration of..
1966 Wavy Baseline 20c
Struck at the Royal Mint in London just over five decades ago, as Great Britain assisted Australia in the lead-up to decimalisation, the 1966 ‘Wavy Baseline’ 20c is one of the rarest decimal coins issued into circulation in Australia. Defined by – as the name suggests – a distinct undulation in the baseline of the ‘2’ in the denominatio..
1919-1921 Square Kookaburra Patterns
Some coins are rare, some are beautiful and some are historic. Some coins, such as the 1919-1921 Square Kookaburra Patterns, unite all three qualities. Genuine artefacts of one of the most fascinating chapters in the story of Australian numismatics, these important post-WWI Pattern issues today rank among Australia’s highest profile rarities...
Downies Hidden Coin Challenge
Suggested by a member of Downies Client Services Team, the 2001 Northern Territory 50c proved to be an inspired choice for our ‘Hidden Coin Challenge’. The challenge sparked a great response from collectors, and much debate as well. We hope you enjoyed the challenge! The 2001 Northern Territory 50c not only presented an interesting choic..