Category Archives: Uncategorized

22nd March 2020

On the “Other Pre-Federation” page ( see I mention the notorious story of the ‘Kangaroo Office’, both because of it’s link with Thomas Stokes, and as an interesting story in its own right. The Queenslander newspaper series on Numismatic History in 1895 shed more light on the story, as the author had interviewed Thomas Scaife, one of the managers of this failed mint …

One of the ‘coins’.

A Kangaroo Office token.


20th March 2020

Stokes and Martin:

Examples of the company’s work as illustrated in newspapers: Unless otherwise noted, these illustrations come from a series of articles entitled ‘A Numismatic History of Australia’ that ran in The Queenslander in 1895.

Token issued in the 1860s for use in the Atheneum Club, Melbourne.

Trade token, around 1858-1862.

Medallion of Sir Hercules Robinson, Governor of N. S. Wales dated 1877-8

Design of Medals awarded at the 1881 Melbourne International Exhibition. (Published in Illustrated Australian News 6th April 1881)

Wesleyan Methodist Jubilee 1886.

A couple of the approximately 40 Jubilee medals issued in 1887. Many of these were produced by Stokes & Martin.

“Town Hall Perth W.A.”

Ballaarat Savings Bank

Badge of the Australian Federation league. (Published in Weekly Times, 21st may 1898)

Coronation medals presented to WA children in 1911.

Western Mail, 17th June 1911.

Army Championships Victoria.

The Herald, 4th December 1913.

The Mercury, 18th January 1938.

19th March 2020

Stokes & Sons

Australian Bicentennial Trade Fair  (Brisbane Expo) memorial medallion:


















The front of the medallion proudly proclaims that Stokes exhibited at the 1880, 1888, 1980 and 1988 International Trade Fairs. The back shows the Royal Exhibition Buildings as depicted on a 1888 medal, and the name at that time of ‘Stokes & Martin’.

Also from Stokes, a Government of Tasmania uniform button with a King’s Crown:

Speaking of Stokes & Martin, here is one that got away …






First Australian Horse 1897-1903. I wonder if there was an error in the advert, as Stokes and Martin dissolved their partnership in 1893.

The design has a kangaroo and emu supporting a shield emblazoned with the cross of St George and the Southern Cross, with a carbine and sword crossed in front secured by a boomerang.

Carol’s new finds: One of the ducks still has a remnant of wool from the time it was attached on a knitted garment.


17th March 2020

Carol’s new finds:

Many of the individual buttons above are Australian made, but not all. here’s details from a couple of Beauclaire adverts from the 1950s:

New Finds:


“C” Day, the day that decimal currency was introduced in Australia, was on the 14th February 1966. The phasing in period was initially planned to be for 2 years, but things went so smoothly that it was shortened to 18 months.

This is a smaller size of the mounted knight.

How cute!


16th March 2020

An exciting new find.

Not Australian, but very cute and dated from 1936:

19th September 1936.

New finds:


The design with the 4 examples (in grey,cream and green) was called basketweave.



The yellow is very worn, but can be identified as the RAAF inspired fashion button seen also in grey and white. See

From Wikimedia:

15th March 2020

Make a bejeweled sweater:


The sketch and buttons were by Beutron. The Daily telegraph, 22nd July 1954.


New Finds:

General Plastics c.1940s

Yellow Opal Glo and salmon/gold Originals, both 1950s. Nicely presented for sale on new cards.

14th March 2020

Some inspiration for your knitting from the Australian Women’s Weekly, 22nd May 1943:

Seen online:

Carol’s ceramic collection:

Some of these may have been made  around 1950 by the unknown Melbourne Company mentioned in the 29th February post. Some may have been made by Anna Louise Alma, a Sydney based Parisian making buttons from around 1947-57. Some may be the work of Stacha Halpern post 1939. They are not Marie Gardner’s. Carol and her husband have an extensive collection of those, and these have different backs and shanks. Who ever made them, they are typical of ceramic and glass buttons being produced post WW2, when other button making materials were in short supply.

13th March 2020

New finds:

Leda-Beauclaire, c.1958    Astor, late 1960s.

Beutron 1970s.

I don’t feature recent Beutron buttons as they were made in Thailand, although packed in Australia. However, f or your interest, note the variety of card styles. I am guessing these are late 1980s onwards.