In the second half of the nineteenth century, demand for The Sovereign surged. Branch mints were established across the world to meet the increased demand with one of these branch mints located in Pretoria, South Africa. At the height of production in 1928 just over 18 million Sovereigns were struck there, each with the mint mark ‘SA’ to differentiate them from the equivalent coins struck back in London.
But the history of the gold coinage in South Africa didn’t begin with the branch mint at Pretoria. It was with the discovery of large deposits of gold in South Africa, known as the Witwatersrand gold Rush, in 1885 that the country would change forever from an agricultural economy to a world leader in gold production and the richest and most prosperous country in Africa.
Then in 1892, under the orders of the President of South Africa, Paul Kruger, the new national Mint in Pretoria was opened and a new coin was struck who’s influence is still felt around the world today. There was great debate at the time about what to base this new gold coin on, with Dutch and German members of the government preferring the Dutch guilder and the German mark, but it was eventually decided to base it on the most influential coin in the world at the time – the British Sovereign.
So the new gold coin, with a value of 1 pond was struck to the same specifications as the British Sovereign and was named the Kruger pond in honour of the President of South Africa and they would be struck there from 1892 until 1900. It was the end of the Second Boer War that would lead to the end of production and the short-lived closure of the Mint in Pretoria until a branch of the Royal Mint was opened.
Many years later in 1967, to help market South African bullion it was decided to issue a one ounce gold coin. When looking for an influence it was decided to re-connect with the Kruger gold pond and the now famous Krugerrand still bears the portrait of Paul Kruger on the obverse, just like those that were produced back in the 1890’s.
|Alloy||22 Carat Gold|
|Reverse Designer||Otto Schultz|