Working with Peter Rosa from 1964 until his death in 1990, I’m the last person living that knows what he created and how he made his dies, molds, and coins.
While selling Rosa’s ancient coin replicas on eBay I was contacted a number times with questions about the history Rosa’s early American coins. I also received Google alerts from the forum CoinTalk, about the authenticity of early American coins that collectors and non-collectors had acquired. Some of these turned out to be Peter Rosa coin replicas. In Wayne Salyes’ book Classical Deception: Counterfeits, Forgeries and Reproductions of Ancient Coins he documented many of Rosa’s ancient Greek and Roman coins, but there is no documentation on the vast work Rosa did with Colonial and Early American coins. In fact, back in the 1960’s Rosa’s Colonial and Early American coins out sold the Ancient Greek and Roman coin replicas that he was selling at the time.
So I’m starting this blog to document Peter Rosa’s vast work of the Colonial and Early American coin reproductions and someday possibility turn it into a reference book. I’m hoping that this will be a worthwhile reference for early American coin collectors and anyone that may have questions about their America colonial coin.
I will be posting pictures of these Colonial America coins overtime on this blog, the only difference between these recreations and the Becker Reproduction coins is they will be stamped with the word copy on the reverse. If I cannot find a good place on the reverse without messing up the coin, I will stamp copy on the obverse. This is so that I’m in compliance with the Hobby Protection Act passed by congress in 1973, stating that all coin reproductions made or sold in the USA must be marked with the word copy. The features of the coins will be exactly the same as the coins that were created in the 1960’s. Including in some cases but not all, copy or Becker stamped on the rim. I will state if this was done by him when I post the coin.
Peter refused to stamp the world copy on the face of the coins because he considered them works of art, and he felt that this would ruin the art work. Because of his position not to stamp copy on the face of the coin, advertisers refused to take his ads, and he was out of the business of mass producing the coin reproductions before the Hobby Protection Act was passed.
There are eighty different Early American coins that Peter advertised on his flyer and this doesn’t count the California gold and Spanish coins used in the early Americas. So I’m not sure how long this will take me to complete, but if you would like to be informed as to when I add new coins to the blog, please sign up for my newsletter.
On a personal note Peter was my uncle by marriage, he was like a father to me, and my best friend. Love him or hate him he was an extraordinary man. I truly miss him and will never forget him.
My next post will be on the 1968 Coinage article about Becker Reproductions Corp. titled “Fake Coin Factory”, after that I will list Rosa’s silver coinage of Massachusetts 1652-1682.
I hope that this blog will be a valuable reference for collectors to refer to.