Coin Specifications

Category: Early American - Pre-Declaration (1616-1775)
Mint: Unknown
Composition: Brass
Weight: 3.8000g
Diameter: mm
Link to this coin

c.1616 SM PORTHOLES SOMMER ISLANDS 6P MS obverse c.1616 SM PORTHOLES SOMMER ISLANDS 6P MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

Both Small Portholes and Large Portholes variants of the Sommer Islands sixpence are known with the latter being slightly more available. While the name of the colony is abbreviated “SI” on the twopence and threepence, the sixpence is large enough to have the full “SOMMER ILANDS” legend. (Interestingly, it is spelled “ISLANDS” with an “s” on the shillings.)

The earliest coins struck for British North America were the Sommer Islands twopence, threepence, sixpence and shillings. The Sommer Islands (also frequently spelled Somer Islands or Isles) comprise present-day Bermuda.

In 1609, nine ships carrying colonists to the new colony of Jamestown in Virginia shipwrecked there during a severe storm, stranding the passengers on an island. The passengers, however, were greeted by an abundance of wild hogs, believed to have descended from a group left by Juan Bermudez, a Spanish explorer who discovered the islands more than 100 years earlier. In 1610, the islands were named “Sommer Islands” after the death of Sir George Somers, one of the passengers who had been stranded.

On June 29, 1615, the Bermuda Company was established to colonize these islands. The company’s authorization included the right to strike coins and soon brass twopence, threepence, sixpence and shilling were minted. The wild hog that inhabited the islands was used as the obverse design and many collectors refer to these coins as “hogge money.” On the reverse is a depiction of a ship.

Metal detector finds in Bermuda have resulted in greater availability of Sommer Islands coinage but they are still decidedly rare. Most of the surviving examples are circulated and corroded, undoubtedly a result of being buried for hundreds of years.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 5/24/2019

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

c.1616 SM PORTHOLES SOMMER ISLANDS 6P MS Brown
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - - - 43500 - 95000 - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 5
Low Grade: VG
Average Grade: F
High Grade: 50

The chart showing VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 6/19/2019 c.1616 SM PORTHOLES SOMMER ISLANDS 6P MS Brown
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base--2-2--1--------------5
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total--2-2--1--------------5
 --40 %-40 %--20 %-------------- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
1/7/2015 NGC XF 45   Brown Heritage Auctions 2015 January 7 - 12 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Session(2), 1216/Lot# 4001 $58,750.00
10/29/2015 NGC AU 50   Brown Heritage Auctions 2015 October 29 - November 1 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(1), 1225/Lot# 3001 $70,500.00
8/10/2016 NGC AU 50   Brown Heritage Auctions 2016 August 10 - 14 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Anaheim Session(2), 1238/Lot# 3920 $73,437.50


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score c.1616 SM 6P MS PORTHOLES SOMMER ISLANDS Brown
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base323836394565647395881078810980111751137311572117751198012552131441375714390150451572116420171421834222469
33723948520175119988108521104511241114391164011843121711274913348139681460815270159541666117542197180
000000110451124111439116401184312171127491334813968146081527015954166611754200
000000111101130711506117071191212361129471355314179148271549616187169011794200
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