Abels fake unique lead coins.


S. C. Abel sold a lot of unique fake lead coins from Trankebar to museums in Copenhagen and Madras and to Axel Wahlstedt in Stockholm from 1922 to 1937. The coins were paid with high prices. They were accepted, published and they entered catalogs. The most use catalog 40 years ago was U. B. Jensens catalog from 1978. It has 187 numbers of lead coins. Out of these 187 lead coins 87 numbers are fake or not existing.


Samuel Christopher Abel sends his first letter to the museum in Copenhagen where he offers Tranquebar coins the 18/12 1919. After some years and with a letter dated 18/10 1922 the museum in Copenhagen receive the first consignment of coins from Tranquebar.

Abel is then in B.A. Class at Christian College in Madras, so he must be a student. During the next 15 years Abel sends nine consignments with coins to the museum in Copenhagen. The consignments are here listed with the number from the journal of purchase from the museum.


                                                                                                   number of coins

Journal of purchase            Send                    Payment              silver      lead       cobber   

KP 1545  75/22                 18/10 1922           25£                      0            13          16         

KP 1571  92/23                 dec. 1923            15£  

KP 1608  36/25                maj 1924              12£                      3            10          36

KP 1670  82/27                 11/8  1927            15£                      3            12          58        

KP 1766  89/31                6/7  1931              22£                      4            40          136       

KP 1785  85/32                                              20£       

KP 1801  43/33                 27/5  1933            10£                                                  

KP 1849 140/35                         1935            12£                      3            44          142

KP 1875  93/37                          1937            12£


We have Abels addresses in the letters from him. We can see that he first is a student at a Christian College in Madras and then B.A., L.T. (probably  teacher) at different schools. In the museums journal Abel is mentioned as an Indian priest


1922      S. C. Abel, B.A.Class, Christian College, Madras

preparing for F.A. examination

1925      Fort, Tanjore

1927      Mayavaram, Tanjore district

1931      S. C. Abel, B.A.,L.T., E.L.M.Frabricius High School,              Purasawalkam, Madras

1933      S. C. Abel, B.A., L.T., L.M.C (Leipzig Mission Church) High School, Shiyali, Tanjore District


The correspondence between Abel and the museum is interesting to read. The 2/9 1931 the museum

write: “Your consignment of 6. July has arrived safely. The museum is very happy to get several

new types of lead coins, therefor we can pay the high price of 22£ for the coins.“ The same is

repeated in other letters from the museum to Abel. The museum is very happy for new types and

new dates, they are willing to pay a high price for them, and they get more of these unique coins in

 the next consignment.


In a letter dated 16/9 1931 Abel asks for a certificate stating that he is selling coins to the Museum in Copenhagen. The reason could be that he will try to sell coins to other museums.

I have been looking for fake Tranquebar coins in the museums in Bangalore, Calcutta, London, Madras and Mysore. Only in Madras Museum I found fake Tranquebar lead coins from mr. Abel.

Besides the two museums in Copenhagen and Madras mr. Abel also sold coins to Dr. Aksel Wahlsted in Stockholm. The coins in Stokholme as well as the coins in Copenhagen and Madras are all fake unique lead coins


Catalogs with fake Tranquebar coins:

H. H. Schou, Beskrivelse af danske og Norske mønter 1448 – 1923, København 1926

Chr. Funch-Rasmussen, Beskr. af Danske mønter fra Trankebar 1620 – 1845, København 1948

John C. F. Gray, Tranquebar, A guide to the coins of Danish India 1620 – 1845,     1974

Uno Barner Jensen, Trankebarmønter 1620 – 1845, København 1978

The catalogs include an increasing number of fake unique lead coins. The last catalog U. B. Jensens catalog from 1978 includes 87 fake unique lead coins out of altogether 187 lead coins.


Article about fake, unique lead coins from Trankebar, Olav Sejerøe, February 1984.


New catalogs without fake Tranquebar coins:

Krause Mishler, Standard catalog of World coins, Krause publications, Tranquebar,  Olav Sejerøe

Siegs Møntkatalog Jens Pilegaard, Trankebar, (Uno Barner Jensen) from 1999