For this month’s featured treasure we travel back to the summer of 2013 when this beautiful 1697 Lima one escudo was recovered from Neptune’s grasp. Found at the Corrigan’s Beach wreck site by Queen’s Jewels, LLC. in July 2013, this coin was one of 48 recovered at that time. The obverse shows an exceptional strike. (An image of the reverse, unfortunately, was not available).
From a meager original mintage of 938, five, and now six, one escudos of 1697 survive from the 1715 Fleet. All are 1697/6 overdates using 1696 dies that apparently never saw use in the first year of the Lima gold coinage. The 15-16 mm coin shows no legends because none were ever engraved on this small a coin. To the left of the castle, we have an “L”, the mint mark of the Lima mint. To the right, we have an “H”, the assayer’s initial of Capt. Francisco Hurtado, who shepherded the Lima gold coin through its first 19 years.
Images courtesy of Fleet Society member, Jonah Martinez. Text courtesy of Fleet Society Director, Phil Flemming.
For more information concerning another coin associated with this find see Treasure of the Month, April 2015.