Diameter: 37.000 mm
Gift of H.M. King George V
Coins and Medals
Uhlhorn Press advertising token
London, England, AD 1851
A portable advertisement for a coining press at the Great Exhibition
The Great Exhibition held at the Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, in 1851 was devised as a showcase for the world's manufacturers and industrialists. Ultimately it had commerce at heart, and the British organisers hoped that British manufacturers would emerge as world leaders. The inclusion of the Uhlhorn Press in the German contribution to the exhibition was intended to show off that country's engineering skills. This is a copper token from the exhibition, issued by Uhlhorn to advertise its press.
founder of the Uhlhorn Press, Diedrich Uhlhorn, had patented his
first lever press in 1817. Initially this revolutionary coin press
had used steam, but eventually electricity was to become the source
of power. The lever press was more efficient than the earlier screw
presses. It worked by means of a heavy wheel attached to a lever
system, which moved the upper
Copper tokens were used for many different purposes from the eighteenth century. By the mid-nineteenth century the convention of using such tokens for advertising and souvenir purposes was well established.