Sedley Marianne Towler: A Great Numismatist You’ve Never Heard Of @stampandcoin @oldsouthmk

Past & Present

Though unknown to most today, Sedley Marianne Towler was one of the first female professional numismatists in the world.

3._Front_of_Gallery_4.jpg Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide

As a child, Towler was fascinated by money in all forms, and become an ardent numismatist. During the early years of her adult life, she worked as a school teacher and superintendent, but she retained her interest in numismatics, and decided to pursue a career in the field. In 1916, at the age of 55, she began work as an assistant numismatist at the Art Gallery of South Australia. In 1917, she received a promotion to “keeper of coins,” a curatorial role.

Australian-1930-penny-Off-the-Wall-Art-Gallery-of-SA-1100x568Towler was a brilliant curator, creating exhibits that captured the sentiments of the nation. Using such exonumismatic items as charity home-front badges and war medals, she encouraged public interest in the numismatic fields. She also honored the nations and coins of the Europeans…

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