J.H writes: I have a coin/token half penny dated 1815– and on the back Payable By John Alex Barry – Hal Fax with a sailing ship.
Your 1815 token’s origin is Halifax, Nova Scotia. Half penny tokens were in common use in Halifax during this period; modeled after the “Condor” emergency money tokens in England. Tokens like these were given out in change when official coins weren’t available or as a method of bringing customers back in the store at a future time in order to redeem the token for goods. The sailing ship motif was common on tokens and was used in stores both on land and on ship.