Skip to content

Feuchtwanger Composition

Feuchtwanger Composition.  A three-component alloy employed for several private issue tokens – and proposed for United States coinage by its developer – but never accepted. In 1837 a New York City dentist, Dr Lewis Feuchtwanger, created the composition of 53% copper, 29% zinc and 18% nickel. Its silver gray color resembles copper-nickel. He had several varieties of three-cent tokens in this composition struck by Scovill of Waterbury. His proposal to the U.S. Treasury Department was wisely rejected for striking minor coins however. (At the time it would have been a nightmare of scrap technology in recovering the medals from worn coins.)

Unsuccessful at the U.S. Treasury, he turned to private industry, but his proposed alloy was not immediately put to commercial use. In effect, Feuchtwanger was just slightly ahead of his time. What he proposed was one of many formulations of german-silver, or what we called today nickel-silver. It was a hard wearing formula, ideal for badges and such.


O12 {1988} Breen, p 215; 701 (German-silver entry).

excerpted with permission from

An Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Technology

For Artists, Makers, Collectors and Curators


Roger W. Burdette, Editor

NNP is 100% non-profit and independent // Your feedback is essential and welcome. // Your feedback is essential and welcome.