Birmingham Ephemera associated with the late W.J. Davis, the property of a Lady

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Date of Auction: 7th October 2009

Sold for £190

Estimate: £200 - £250

Birmingham [Workhouse], Five Pounds, for Messrs. Spooner, Attwoods & Co, London, unissued (Davis Warwickshire 1216, and pl. U, 1; Grant 273C). Central fold and a few nicks in bottom edge, otherwise very fine and very rare [PLATE II] £200-250


Engraved by Radclyffe, Birmingham; watermark of Silverburn Linen. The old Birmingham Workhouse, in Lichfield street, was situated just below the Assize Courts. It was erected in 1733 and further enlarged in 1766 and 1779; it was demolished in 1853. In the 19th century the overseers of the workhouse were responsible for one of the largest issues of tokens between 1811 and 1814, with values from a penny to a shilling. Promissory notes of £5, £1, 5 shillings and two shillings and sixpence were also issued (Withers, p.75) and, from the dates shown on surviving examples, pre-date any issue of tokens; Davis (19th Century, p.146) states they were issued in 1808