300 gold coins uncovered by building workers in Albany, Western Australian

Updated: 19 May 2011
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RARE FIND: Gold sovereigns dating back to 1800 have been unearthed in Albany, which was settled in 1829. 
HUNDREDS of historic gold coins have been uncovered by building workers in Albany, on WA's south coast.
Albany police confirmed the reports that workers doing excavations on Stirling Terrace had found around 300 gold sovereigns buried under concrete.

Initial reports said the sovereigns dated back to the year 1800, and were worth more than $500,000.

Albany was the first settlement in WA, established in December 1826, even before the Swan River colony which led to the Perth's early development.

A replica of the historic brig Amity, the first ship to arrive in the town, is one of the main tourist attractions less than 1km away from where the coins were uncovered.

The town's The Rare Coin Company managing director Rob Jackman queried those claims, saying sovereigns were a common coin and more importantly, they weren't in production until 1817.
Mr Jackman, who has 30 years experience with rare coins, said he had not yet seen the coins but queried the initial report and their estimated value.
"They didn't make a sovereign in 1800," he said.
"They're very, very common coins.
"Until we see them, we would just estimate their value at around $320 to $330 per coin, the gold bullion price.
"They would have to be in very top condition for that price ($500,000), but if they've been buried, they're likely to be damaged. It seems exaggerated."
However Mr Jackman said the discovery was significant and he had never heard of an antique coin find of that magnitude in Albany before.   
SOURCE: news.com.au

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