The St. Patrick coins (so-named because
of the image of the saint that appears on the back of the coins) were
struck sometime prior to 1681, when some of them were brought to America
by a man named Mark Newby. The front of the coins show a crowned
king on his knees playing a harp and gazing up at a crown. The
back of the Farthings show St. Patrick driving serpents into the sea; the back of the Halfpennies show St. Patrick surrounded by
a crowd of people. Although these coins were struck overseas, they became
legal money in New Jersey in May, 1682 because of the pressing need for
coins in the Colonies.
Many of the copper pieces have a brass
plug inserted deliberately to give the large crown a golden color.