"penny" pre-1831 for 'U.S. cent'?

Barnhart barnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Tue Feb 15 19:35:23 UTC 2005

Dear Jesse (et al.),

As I am sure you are aware, foreign currency was used in the U.S. until
the 1850's.  Therefore, it will prove difficult to ascertain the source of
the penny in many quotations, would it not?


barnhart at highlands.com

American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on Tuesday, February 15,
2005 at 10:37 AM  wrote:

>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Poster:       Jesse Sheidlower <jester at PANIX.COM>
>Subject:      "penny" pre-1831 for 'U.S. cent'?
>Perhaps you database-searching guys will have better luck on
>this. I'm looking for an example of _penny_ referring to a
>U.S. government-issued one-cent coin, antedating 1831.  I am
>aware that in the colonial period, and for some time
>thereafter (until the U.S. developed the ability to mint
>sufficient coinage for itself), the U.S. used British-issued
>coin, and during this time, the word _penny_ was used in
>America to refer to a British penny. But I'm looking for a
>U.S. one.
>Thanks. A correspondent at the American Numismatic Association
>is absolutely sure that the term would have been in use
>decades before 1831, but didn't have any examples at hand.
>Jesse Sheidlower

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