In this week's edition of our local paper, the Gazette Journal, there was a particularly interesting tidbit in my favorite section, "Glimpses Into the Past."
20 Years Ago
Thursday, March 1, 1990
"A 400-year-old silver coin was found along the North River shore of Mathews by North resident Doug S. A Peninsula coin dealer identified the coin, dated 1586, as a Spanish four ducat. The coin is slightly larger than a U.S. quarter and has been worn smooth on one side."
Okay, first of all,
Something from the 1800s? Sure. Early 20th century? Certainly. But something from the sixteenth century? Never.
Just touching something from the year 1586 is miraculous to me, but finding such an item would be the thrill of a lifetime. That's not just because I don't get out much, mostly it's because I
It's time for a pop quiz, even though quizzes and thinking are illegal on the weekends, especially in Mathews.
How did this 400+ year old coin of Spanish descent wind up in the North River of little ole Mathews County, Virginia, USA, North America?
1. Captain John Smith brought it over from England and lost it out his pocket when he wrestled and man-handled a sting ray off a particular point in Deltaville in 1608. (For non-locals, Sting Ray Point is said to have been named for just this wrestling match, although there was no reference to a 1586 coin falling out his pocket--until now.) This answer does not address how the coin made its way
2. Pirates. Plain and simple. Pirates. They came up the river seeking shelter from a storm and started playing quarters except with ducats.
3. Honestly if I don't find out the answer to this I'll be thinking about it until and even while drool falls from my mouth onto my lap as I sit propped up in the hallway of the Mathews Convalescent Center.
But I really think the answer relates to pirates.
What do you think?