Alistons, Scott, & Co. Columbo
1853 - Ceylon

A uniface lead token elliptical in shape issued for the Hunupitiya Mills, opposite the Circular, Colombo
Denomination4½ pence
Width29.3 mm
Height20.4 mm
Thickness1.6 mm
Weight4.53 gms
alistons_scott_pb_obverse alistons_scott_pb_reverse
Lowsley #3 Pridmore #2

Obverse : Center a long ornamental scroll with ALISTONS,SCOTT&Co
along periphery within beaded ellipse inside raised rim.
Reverse : Blank

This firm was founded in 1848 by J. B. Alston and Alex. Scott who were joined in 1853 by George Alston. Following the slump in coffee in 1853 owing to the abolition of the preferential duty on coffee in Great Britain and the fall in the price per cwt from 105/= to 48/=, internal trouble developed in the firm. The partnership was dissolved in or about 1854 and two new firms were established.
(a) Alston Scott & Co., which closed down in 1891
(b) A. & B. Scott & Co., which eventually sold out to Alston Scott & Co. in 1871.
From the name ALSTONS being expressed in the plural, the leaden tokens would appear to have been issued after the arrival of George Alston in 1853 and before the dissolution of the partnership in or about 1854.

This is a rare token, one of the oldest for which a date of issue can be firmly infered from the name. It is one of only two lead tokens and the only elliptical token listed for Ceylon in Pridmore. Unlisted in Mitchiner.

* Coins and Tokens of Ceylon, Lieut. Col B. Lowsley, Num. Chron. Sr III Vol. XV, 1895.
* The Coins of British Commonwealth of Nations to the end of the reign of George VI 1952 Part 2 - Asian Territories by F. Pridmore Spink & Son Ltd., 1965. Tokens

The Uncirculated token was scanned at 300dpi and the images are displayed at 200dpi.
It was purchased in 2002 May from a dealer in USA.