A Project of the Robert H. Gore, Jr. Numismatic Endowment
University of Notre Dame,Department of Special Collections
by Louis Jordan

Frequently Asked Questions about Colonial Currency

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Value in today's dollars

Often people wish to know the purchasing power of a shilling in 1700 or 1776 as compared to its purchasing value today. There is a book that converts the purchasing power of money from the past into today's dollar. It lists values from America back to 1665 and for Britain back to 1600 in relation to the purchasing power of a US dollar in 2001. The work is:

John J. McCusker, How Much is that in Real Money? A Historical Commodity Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States, New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 2001.

ISBN 1-929545-01-0. This work was published in August 2001, 132 pages, hardcover at $15.00. Oak Knoll Press, 310 Delaware Street, New Castle, DE 19720

Further, there are several online databases and sites available at: