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    1846 Charleston MECHANIC Slave Hire Badge. Number 239. A slightly convex diamond-shaped tag with clipped corners, a hole at the top for suspension, 55mm x 55mm. Manufactured by William M. Rouse, local silversmith, jeweler, and (later) watchmaker. The elements on the front are as follows (top to bottom): "CHARLESTON" in a crescent-shaped bar punch; an incuse "239" in individual punches; "MECHANIC" in a rectangular punch; and "1846" bar punched. The condition is extremely fine with a pleasing medium brown patina, the elements are all clear and well struck, and the surface is mostly smooth.

    Mechanic badges are much rarer and more collectible than the Servant and Porter occupations. The license fee charged during this period for a skilled craftsman was $7.00, the highest fee of all (a servant was $2.00). Once again, this year's total of badges sold was down from totals in earlier years. The nice condition, scarce occupation, and lower mintage make this badge a very desirable one, worthy of the finest collections.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2006
    7th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 10
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 851

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