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Australia Port Arthur Historic Site

2011 Proof Five Dollar reverse 2011 Proof Five Dollar obverse

2011 Proof Five Dollar

Reverse Designer:Vladimir Gottwald Obverse Designer:Ian Rank-Broadley Size:14mm Weight:1.24g Edge:Reeded Composition:99.9% Gold


Sales History


This Five Dollar Solid Gold coin focusing on the Port Arthur Historic Site is part of the Colonial Heritage series. The coin forms part of a set of six which also includes Hyde Park Barracks, Cascades Female Factory, Freemantle Prison, Coal Mines Historic Site and Old Government House. The reverse was designed by Vladimir Gottwald and features the artists drawing of the Port Arthur Historic Site viewed from the outside. It contains the legend PORT ARTHUR HISTORIC SITE 1/25 OZ.9999 Au. The obverse contains an Ian Rank-Broadley portrait of Queen Elizabeth II right-facing with tiara and earrings. The legend ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA 2011 5 DOLLARS encircles the image.

Port Arthur in Tasmania was established during the 1830's. It was originally a penal settlement and became a part of Australian history. The grounds contain around sixty buildings in a beautiful location looking across Mason's Cove and Carnarvon Bay. After the ceasing of prisoners brought in from overseas back in 1853, the number of prisoners arriving dwindled but it still received a substantial percentage of colonially sentenced men. The need of Port Arthur to be a sustainable station, large expanses of bush were harvested to feed the timber industry and they turned the old flour mill into a penitentiary and some workshops with a steam driven sawmill, blacksmith, forge and a carpenters workshop. In 1864 their final project of an Asylum was undertaken. It was the belief at Port Arthur that the convicts could not simply spend their days getting flogged and rotting in a cell, they needed to be reformed through a combination of religion, education and trade-training. But the problem of an ageing convict population were its downfall and by 1877 the last convict had left the premises (Port Arthur Historic Sites, 2013) . Today it is one of Tasmania's most popular tourist destinations and it embraces its past with ghost stories that come with a guided tour!

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