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Archive for the ‘Medals’ Category

•  An anniversary medal is to a company what a birthday cake is to a person.

•  Give a medal to a person. Give a plaque to a company or organization.

•  No one collects one medal. That is the basic premise for every medal series.

•  It is better to have a simple medal design with elaborate detail than an elaborate design with simple detail.

•  To goldplate a bronze medal is to gild a lily. To gild an award medal is to create a higher class medal.

•  There is no greater pride in the world than that of the recipient of a gold medal.

•  An average numismatist talks about coins, a small numismatist talks about tokens, a great numismatist talks about medals.

•  God made the metal — m-e-t-a-l, man makes the medal — m-e-d-a-l.

•  No undercuts in a coin or medal model to be diestruck – artists must bevel all relief.


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Augustus Saint-Gaudens

Augustus Saint-Gaudens

Henry Hering and Adolph Weinman were like the Weil Brothers, Henri and Felix. They were all sculptors’ assistants. But where the Weils worked for sculptors Alexander Doyle, Philip Martiny, Jules Roine, Olin Levi Warner and their brother-in-law George Wagner, Henry Hering and Adolph Weinman worked for the most prominent sculptor in America, Augustus Saint-Gaudens.

Felix Weil had first met Adolph Weinman at the National Academy of Design, where they were both students about 1889. Weinman, a life-long friend of the Weils, though sometimes erasable in that relationship, was to become a top sculptor in his own right. Through it all, however, he was to use the talents of the two Weils, and came to use their services in being able to reduce bas-relief models, cut dies on their Janvier machine, and ultimately to produce medals from his models.

The Weils had first met Henry Hering at Philip Martiny’s studio in New York City in 1890. Previously Martiny had been an assistant to Saint-Gaudens and through Saint-Gaudens he had been awarded the contract to prepare all the sculpture for the Agriculture Building at the Chicago World’s Fair to be opened in 1892.

Martiny had hired Adolph Weinman, and a handful of other helpers –  Isidore Konti, Frank Lemon, Anton Schaff and Henry Hering – before Felix Weil came on board. Working side-by-side these sculptors prepared models in New York City to be shipped to Chicago to be cast there.

The Forestry Building on the fairgrounds had been completed and was available for sculptors because of its giant size and glass roof with good light. The building was divided in half by drapery with Martiny’s assistants working on one side and another group of sculptors under Karl Bitter working on the other side. The sculptors had brought the models, started in New York, to this building in Chicago to be enlarged and cast there.

After the work was finished in Chicago, the sculptors all returned to New York. Henry Hering worked for Martiny at his studio in Rockville Center before he, like Weinman, became a Saint-Gaudens’ assistant.  Henri worked on the sculptural decoration for the Waldorf Hotel. Felix goes to Paris for a year’s study at the School of Decorative Arts at the Louvre Museum, then returns to New York to work on the John Paul Jones statue by Charles H. Niehaus.

So it is evident that the sculptors, and their assistants, were a close nit group at this time. They all knew each other and often had worked together in a constant shifting among the studios of whoever got the contract to prepare some monument or sculpture or decorative architecture in a project too large for one artist to accomplish. Thus whoever got the contract would hire their friends as sculpture assistants.

Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Medal

Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Medal
Credit: Tom Mulvaney (Smithsonian Institution)

The Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Medal was required after Roosevelt’s successful election in 1904. The last month of that year, and into the next was a flurry of committee meetings, suggestions, assignments, but the most influence was Roosevelt’s alone. He wanted a more artistic medal than what had been produced in the past.

The medal committee finally permitted a larger medal and agreed that a sculptor  be permitted to design and model the medal in preference to the medallic engravers employed in the past. The task was assigned to the top sculptor in America at the time, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, at Roosevelt’s insistence.

From design suggestions, Saint-Gaudens directed the design. But it was Adolph Weinman who created the actual model. His model was large for such an intended medal. He had prepared the president’s portrait in a 20-inch bas-relief. Plus a similar size of an eagle for the reverse.

Weinman knew how to reduce that large size. He took the models to Henri Weil who had to make an intermediate reduction in paraffin, cast that reduction, then make a subsequent reduction for a more suitable size to cut 3-inch dies and hubs to be turned over to Tiffany & Co, which was charged with the production of one gold medal and 150 bronze medals.

The American Philosophical Society was the spirit behind the movement for a medal to celebrate the bicentennial of Benjamin Franklin’s birth. This was to be celebrated January 17, 1906, the anniversary date. The Society’s initial effort started three years before, in April 1903.The Philosophical Society took a broad move by naming President Roosevelt a member at that time to insure its adoption.

A year later they sought enabling legislation for this to be sponsored by the State Department. It was assumed the medal would be struck by the Philadelphia Mint, but engraver Charles Barber stated it would take six months to reduce such a model, remembering how much effort was extended in 1892 for the Chicago World’s Fair medal from sculptor’s models, again in this instance, from Saint-Gaudens’ models.

Saint-Gaudens had accepted the commission as a project for his brother Louis. But the project did not go well. Author Michael Moran states in his book Striking Change:

The project did not get off to a smooth start. Morris called for a meeting of the committee at the end of September 1904. At the last minute Gus had to cancel because of sciatica. The meeting was rescheduled to October 21. Thus Gus was in New York for, among other things, this meeting on the Franklin medal when his [New York City] studio burned. It was an ill omen.

On top of that Saint-Gaudens was suffering from cancer, devoting less attention to the Franklin Medal. Also at this time he was being challenged by President Roosevelt to create models for a new American coin.

The date of the celebration came and went. Saint-Gaudens missed the deadline. He had not delivered models in time. Innumerable changes were required. Moran recounts the reasons thoroughly for six pages in his book, above mentioned.  Because of Saint-Gaudens illness, and other factors, the models were greatly delayed.  Henry Hering brought the models from Aspet in Cornish, New Hampshire, where Saint-Gaudens was recuperating to Henri Weil in New York.

Below is the entire entry on Augustus Saint-Gaudens from the author’s Databank of American Artists. It is not the longest – Victor D. Brenner’s is longer – but none is more important than the medallic items created by America’s most preeminent sculptor.  See page 12 for the two medals of Medallic Art interest.

SAINT-GAUDENS, Augustus  (1848-1907) Irish-American sculptor.

Born Dublin, Ireland, 1 March 1848.
Came to America the year of his birth where his family arrived in Boston in September, but settled in New York City in October 1848.

Saint-Gaudens’s first relief work was carving portrait cameos during the period 1861-1875 (Dryfhout catalog 1–9, passim to 55). His work in clay and plaster date from 1867 for the bronze bust of his father, Bernard P.E. Saint-Gaudens (Dryfhout 15). Much of his early work, however, was carving in marble and his first bas-reliefs were a pair of cameo-style marble reliefs created in 1873 (Dryfhout 43, 46).

In 1877 he created three bronze reliefs, his first in this technique, with the portrait plaquettes of David Maitland Armstrong, William G. Bunce and George W. Mayonard (Dryfhout 61-63). That same year he finished a 32-inch relief for the Henry E. Montgomery Memorial (outside the parameters of this databank’s arbitrary limit of 18-inch size to be listed, but those with connections to collectible size under 18-inch are listed under Sculpture).

Saint-Gaudens was a master of bas-relief. He created two dozen oversize relief plaques (Dryfhout 64 passim to 208). These were often mounted on wood frames, or over mantels inside, or for the base of monuments outside. Those 13 reliefs that had reductions – as he often chose to do – are listed here for these smaller size reductions.

His preferred method for his medallic art was casting, for reliefs and even for cast medals. He only authorized one medal to be struck – the 1892 Columbian Exposition Award Medal – and the U.S Treasury officials rejected his reverse. He never authorized a struck medal thereafter, although two were indeed struck: the 1905-6 Cornish Masque Commemorative Plaquette and the 1906 Franklin Bicentennial Medallion. But he was too ill at the time to mount a strong objection.

While he often shared the medallic work with his many assistants – or his brother – he had a strong influence in their design, even if another hand did the actual modeling. The signature was always his. (Dryfhout lists 20 of these assistants, there were sometimes as many as 15 working on different sculpture projects at once, almost like a sculpture factory! Every one of these artists went on to become well known on their own, it was, in effect, better experience than an art school.)

Saint-Gaudens was very knowledgeable in casting and working with clay and plaster. Virtually all his work was cast from a plaster pattern. However, his cast models for the Columbian Exposition Medal were altered (reverse even replaced!) by the engraving staff of the U.S. Mint; this led to his suspicions of striking thereafter and his displeasure with Philadelphia Mint engravers Charles Barber and George Morgan.

In his later years (even with his assistants) Saint-Gaudens delayed delivering the finished product on time. He and his assistants worked on the Seated Lincoln for nine years (1897-1906). Delivery of the Franklin Medal was a year and a half past the date of the ceremony! Perhaps this was due more to Saint-Gaudens striving for perfection rather than tardiness, overwork or a concern for a ceremony, after all, if a committee wanted a Saint-Gaudens’ creation they had to put up with his idiosyncrasies.

It was the Franklin Bicentennial Medal that brings Saint-Gaudens within the sphere of America’s Medallic Art Company.

He gave his full personal attention, however, to creating America’s most beautiful coin design, the high relief $20 gold piece of 1907. Accredited as the modern world’s most attractive coin, his desire was to prove to an American president – Theodore Roosevelt – that 20th century coin design could equal that of ancient Greeks. A century later, his art concept was indeed solidified by the U.S. Treasury issuing his high relief $20 coin Double Eagle as a gold bullion coin, replicating his 1907 original high relief in a 21st century version.

In addition to his accreditation as creating the modern world’s most attractive coin design, he is also universally considered – by every standard – to be America’s most preeminent sculptor.

His monograms are noteworthy. He signed the $20 coin model with AG monogram. It appears he tried to use a different style ASG monogram for each medallic work, a feat he could not do for his reliefs or sculpture in the round.

Recipient of the first American Academy of Arts and Letter Gold Medal for Sculpture, 1909. A decade earlier he was one of the founders and Fellow Member of the National Sculpture Society.

Died Cornish, New Hampshire, 3 August 1907, the year his models were first struck as United States gold coins.

C   O   I   N   S

1905-06 One Cent Coin (unaccepted models) . . . . . Dryfhout 204A
1906-07 $10 Gold Coin (unaccepted models) . . . . . Dryfhout 204B
1907 Eagle $10 No Motto Gold. . . . . . .Breen 7094-7099, KM 125
1908 Eagle $10 Motto Gold . . . . . .  Baxter 201, Breen 7100-7137,
          ANS (IECM) 25, Dryfhout 204B, KM 130
          Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 48
1907 Double Eagle $20 High Relief Prototypes. . . . . . . Baxter 202,
          Breen 7355-7361
1907 Double Eagle $20 No Motto. . . . . . . . . . . . Breen 7362-7367,
          Dryfhout 204C KM 126
1908 Double Eagle $20 Motto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ANS (IECM) 26,
          Baxter 203, Breen 7368-7419, KM 127
          Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 48

B  U  L  L  I  O  N     C  O  I  N  S

(Saint-Gaudens Type Bullion Coin Gold Coins; modified from Augustus Saint-Gaudens obv design; rev designed by Miley Busiek and modeled by Sherl J. Winter; struck by U.S. Mint and issued in proof surface each year):

1986 American Eagle One Ounce Fine Gold Fifty
Dollar Coin. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .KM 219

1986 American EagleOne Half Ounce Fine Gold
Twenty-Five Dollar Coin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  KM 218

1986 American Eagle One Quarter Ounce Fine
Gold Ten Dollar Coin. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .KM 217

1986 American Eagle One Tenth Ounce Fine Gold
Five Dollar Coin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . KM 216

2009 Double Eagle $20 Ultra High Relief (replicating the
1907 High Relief Prototype) . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

R  E  L  I  E  F  S

1876-77 Le Noble (Leonie Marguerite) Circular
Relief . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 66

1877 Armstrong (David Maitland) Plaquette . . . . . . . . . . Reliefs 4,
         Dryfhout 61

1877 Bruce (William G.) Plaquette . . . . . . .  Reliefs 5, Dryfhout 62

1877 Maynard (George Willoughby) Plaque . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 6,
Dryfhout 63

1878 Armstrong (Helen Maitland) Plaquette . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 72,
Reliefs 9

1878 Bunner (Andrew F.) Plaquette . . . . . .  Reliefs 8, Dryfhout 73

1878 Cary (Walter Cary) Plaquette . . . . . . Reliefs 14, Dryfhout 76

1878 McKim (Charles Follen) Plaquette . . . .Tolles 9, Dryfhout 75
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . . 24.20
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib .  p 13

1878 Three Friends Caricature Plaquette [Saint-Gaudens,
Stanford White, Charles McKim]. . . . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 10,
Tolles 8, Dryfhout 74
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . 1992.306

1878 Picknell (William L.) Plaqette . .. . . . .  Reliefs 7, Dryfhout 71
Exhibited: National Academy of Design AE5 (1908) . #366

1879 Cary (Walter Cary) With Hat Plaque . . . .. . . . .  Dryfhout 77,
Reliefs 15

1879 Chapin (Emelia Ward) Plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 81

1879 Gilder Family Plaque [Richard Watson Gilder,
wife Helena de Kay, son Rodman] . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 82,
Reliefs 11, Tolles 11
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . 2002.445
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, page . . 32
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 11

1879 Giler (Rodman de Kay) Plaque. . . . . Reliefs 12, Dryfhout 83,
Tolles 12
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . 1994.50

1879 Johnston (William E.) Plaque . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 79

1879 Love (Maria) Plaquette . . . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 16, Dryfhout 80

1879 Millet (Fancis D.) Relief . . . . . . . . . . . Tolles 10, Dryfhout 78
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 10.223

1880 Bastien-Lepage (Jules) Plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 87,
Tolles 15,  Reliefs 18, Baxter 74
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . .12.76.4
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 13

1880 Shiff (Henry) Plaque . . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 17, Dryfhout 85,
Storer 3367

1881 Holland (Josiah G.) Relief . . . . . . . . . Reliefs 24, Dryfhout 92

1881 Lee (Sarah Redwood) Plaquette (reduction from larger
plaque). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Reliefs 22, Dryfhout 94

1881 Ward (Samuel Gray) Plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 95,
Reliefs 23, Tolles 17
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . . .12.29
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 18

1882 Saint-Gaudens (Homer) Plaque . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 100,
Reliefs 25, Tolles 20
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . .. . . .  05.15.2

1882 Vanderbilt (Cornelius I) Plaque. . . . .Dryfhout 101, Reliefs 26
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 18

1882 Vanderbilt (Gertrude) Plaque . . . . . . Dryfhout 102, Reliefs 27

1884 Dunrobin Circular Relief [deerhound dog] . . . .  Dryfhout 110

1884 Gray (Asa) Physician Plaque [over limits of this
book but listed in Storer; no reductions made
of this plaque]. . . . . . . . . . .Storer 1375, 1949, Dryfhout 112

1884 White (Bessie Smith) Circular Relief . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 109,
Reliefs 30

1885 Beaman (William E.) Circular Relief. . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 116,
        Reliefs 33
Exhibited: National Academy of Design AE5 (1908) .  #368

1887-88 Stevenson (Robert Louis) Plaque [first
version] . . . . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 39, Baxter 76, Dryfhout 133
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  PCA 45:346
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 12.76.1
Collection: Yale Univ Art Gallery (5 varieties >1) . 322-326
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 29

1888 Van Rensselaer (Mariana Griswold) Plaque (reduction
from larger plaque). . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 35, Dryfhout 130
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 17.104
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 28

1889 Cox (Kenyon) Plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 136

1889-90 Mead (Mary Gertrude) Relief. . . .Reliefs 36, Dryfhout 137
Collection: Yale Univ Art Gallery [>1].320-321, 1937.4003

1892 Cleveland (Frances Folsom) Circular Relief . . . . . .Reliefs 44,
Dryfhout 146

1892 Novy Circular Relief [infant portrait of Louis P.
Clark, whose mother was Saint-Gaudens model and
mistress, Davida Johnson Clark]. . . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 45,
Dryfhout 147

1894 Beaman (Charles C.) Relief (reduction from a
large relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 46, Dryfhout 155

1898 Howells (Mildred and William Dean) Plaque . . . .  Reliefs 47,
Dryfhout 168

1898 Howells (Mildred) Portrait Medallion (from larger
relief of both her and husband William). . . . .  Dryfhout 168
Illustrated: Vermeule A15 {1971} Numismatic Art, p. . 100

1899 Danna (Charles A.) Plaquette (reduction from large
relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 170

1899 Stevenson (Robert Lewis) Portrait Plaque [second
version] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Reliefs 40, Dryfhout 188
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  PCA 54:339

1900 Beaman (Hettie Evarts) Plaquette (reduction from
larger relief) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 48, Dryfhout 174

1901-03 Gray (Horace) Plaquette (reduction from larger
relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Reliefs 49, Dryfhout 177

1901 Rogers (Jacob C.) Plaque (reduction from larger
relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 178

1902 Gray (Anna Lyman) Plaque (reduction from larger
relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 182

1902 MacVeagh (Wayne) Circular Relief . . . . . . . . . . . . Reliefs 50,
Dryfhout 180
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  PCA 64:682

1902-03 MacVeagh (Wayne and Virginia C.) Plaque (reduction
from larger relief). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 180

1902-03 Moseley (William O.) Plaque . . .Reliefs 51, Dryfhout 186

1903 Stevenson (Robert Louis) Plaque [third version,
with reduction from even larger plaque). . . . .Dryfhout 188,
Reliefs 41

1903 Wolcott (Roger) Relief (reduction from larger
plaque). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 183

1904 Adams (Henry) Caricature Medallion . . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 53,
Dryfhout 191

1904 Finn (James W.) Caricature Plaquette . . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 54,
Dryfhout 192

1904 Platt (Charles A.) Caricature Plaquette. . . . . . . . . . .Reliefs 52,
Dryfhout 193

1903-04 Matthews (Stanley and Mary Theaker) Plaquette
(reduction from large plaque). . . . . . . . . . . . . .Dryfhout 194

(1905 ca) Victory Circular Relief (also called Nikh-Eiphuh
Relief; cast by Gorham). . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 205, Baxter 80
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, page . 211

1905 Sage (Dean) Circular Relief (reduction from
larger relief; cast by Gorham) . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 200

1908 Le Page Relief (cast by Gorham) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

1908 Stevenson (Robert Louis) Portrait Relief Plaque
(18-inch cast by Gorham) . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .Gorhan QQT

1908 Stevenson (Robert Louis) Portrait Relief Plaque
(12-inch cast by Gorham) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gorhan QQT

        S  E  A  L  S

1893 Smithsonian Institution Seal (design in plaster for
institution’s seal; obv unadopted, rev used for rev
of Hodgkins Medal, see below). . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 150

   B   A   D   G   E   S

1889 Washington Inaugural Centennial Committee Badge (a
reduction of St-Gaudens larger medal). . . . . . . . Douglas 54
Auctions:. . . . . . . .  PCA 43:298, PCA 45:60, PCA 47:289,
PCA 50:440, PCA 56:193, PCA 68:216
Collection: Cornell Univ Johnson Art Gallery . . . .. . . . 347
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change,  page . 51

C   A   S   T     M   E   D   A   L   S

1885 Sargent (John Singer) Cast Medal . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 86,
Tolles 14, Reliefs 19, Baxter 75
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . . 13.78
Illustrated: Vermeule A15 {1971} Numismatic Art p. . . . 98
Illustrated: MA2 {1999} Stahl, Medal In America, p . .  139

1889 Washington (George) Inaugural Centennial Medallion
(designed by Augustus St-Gaudens, modeled by Philip
Martiny; cast by Gorham) . . . . . . . . . . . . . (73), Douglas 53,
Baxter 77, Dryfhout 134, Walters 195
Auctions:. . . . . .. . CAL 28:543, CAL 29:825, CAL 30:522,
CAL 30:783, CAL 31:317, CAL 35:914; J&J 8:281-283,
J&J 10:1499-1501, J&J 11:786, J&J 14:672, J&J 15:256,
J&J 22:981, J&J 25:344, J&J 26:593; PCA 44:96,
PCA 45:59, PCA 46:157, PCA 48:546, PCA 50:439,
PCA 51:337, PCA 51:1070, PCA 54:438, PCA 55:84,
PCA 57:451, PCA 59:490, PCA 60:224, PCA 61:238,
PCA 64:250, PCA 65:361, PCA 66:250, PCA 67:241,
PCA 68:215, PCA 69:337, PCA 71:218, PCA 80:211
Collection: American Numismatic Society [>1]  1976.263.9
Collection: Cornell Univ Johnson Art Gallery . . . . . . . . 346
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 90.18.1
Collection: Newark Museum. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 00.350
Collection: Princeton Library Vermeule (NC000) . .  .. . 143
Collection: Smithsonian National Numismatic. . . . 377:279
Collection: Walters Art Gallery Baltimore. . . . . .
Collection: Washington & Lee University. . . . . . .
Exhibited: Utah Museum of Fine Arts (1991) . . . . . . . . .143
Illustrated: P2 The Numismatist 56:1 (January 1943) p . . 94
Illustrated: A15 {1971} Vermeule, Numismatic Art page 96
Illustrated: MA2 {1999} Stahl, Medal In America, page  52
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 52

1892 Columbian Exposition Award Medal (designed by
Augustus, modeled by Louis Saint-Gaudens). Dryfhout 151,
ANS (IECM) 27, Baxter 86, type of Eglit 330
Auctions:. . . . . . PCA 80:296[cast of rejected reverse]

1898 Howells (William Dean) Cast Medallion (portrait from
larger plaque of Howells and his wife, Mildred, with
addition of lettering for medallion cast). . . . . .Dryfhout 168

1905-6 Massachusetts Civil Service Reform Association
Women’s Auxiliary Medallion (designed by St-Gaudens,
modeled by Frances Grimes, cast by Gorham) . .Storer 1321,
ANS (IECM) 3, Dryfhout 199
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .PCA 80:405
Collection: Cornell Univ Johnson Art Gallery . . . . . . . . 349
Illustrated: C14 {1996} Marqusee, covers, p 69, with
comments on the creation of this medal by DWJ.

1906 Franklin (Benjamin) Bicentennial Medallion (designed
by Augustus, modeled by Louis Saint-Gaudens; earliest
variety) . . . . . . . . . .  Greenslet GM-117, Fuld FR.M.UN.6
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  PCA 44:342, PCA 45:351
Collection: Smithsonian National Numismatic. . . . 391:372
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change,color p .19

G  A  L  V  A  N  O     C  A  S  T  S

1879 Millet (Francis Davis) Plaque. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 78,
Reliefs 13, Baxter 73
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . .  10.223
Exhibited: National Academy of Design AE5 (1908) no 370

1892 Columbian Exposition Pattern Galvanos (obv by
Saint-Gaudens rev by Charles E. Barber) [exhibited by
American Numismatic Society, 1911]. . . . ANS (IECM) 27,
Rulau X4, Eglit 330

S  T  R  U  C  K    M  E  D  A  L  S

1892 Columbian Exposition Award Medal (designed by
Augustus, modeled by Louis Saint-Gaudens). Dryfhout 151,
ANS (IECM) 27, Baxter 86
Collection: American Numismatic Society. . . . . 1961.137.2
Illustrated: P8 Medallic Sculpture 2 (Fall 1985)
Illustrated: P9 Medallies (1987) both sides, page. . . . . . .112
Illustrated: MA2 {1999} Stahl, Medal In America, p . . . 138
Illustrated: M57 {2007} Jaeger-Bowers, 100 Great #53, p 64

1892 Columbian Exposition Medal (obv by Augustus St-Gaudens,
rev by C.E. Barber; dies made at Philadelphia Mint,
medals struck by Scovill, Waterbury). .  . . . .  (75), Eglit 90,
ANS (IECM) 23, Baxter 87, Rulau X3,
National Maritime W 3, Storer 160
Auctions:. . . . . . . CAL 28:219, CAL 30:783, CAL 31:319,
CAL 35:527; J&J 7:187-188, J&J 9:607, J&J 10:149,
J&J 11:325, J&J 13:273, J&J 14:283, J&J 15:172,
J&J 16:577-689, J&J 17:577, J&J 19:572, J&J 23:310,
J&J 25:205, J&J 27:1080; NAS 22:4094-4096; PCA 42:340,
PCA 43:347, PCA 46:201-202, PCA 46:1089-1090,
PCA 47:344-345, PCA 49:361, PCA 50:279, PCA 50:1202,
PCA 51:235-236, PCA 52:231, PCA 53:223, PCA 55:259,
PCA 56:388, PCA 56:1747, PCA 57:302, PCA 57:454-455,
PCA 59:491-492, PCA 63:318, PCA 64:550, PCA 65:395,
PCA 66:274, PCA 67:267, PCA 68:303, PCA 69:341-342,
PCA 71:396-397, PCA 72: 482, PCA 80:295
Archives: Inventory of Am Sculpture . . . . . .  IAS 1200073
Collection: American Numismatic Society [>1] 1933.64.12
Collection: Art Institte of Chicago. . . . . . . . . . . .1920.1031
Collection: Cornell Univ Johnson Art Gallery . . . . . . .  348
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 1995.4
Collection: Newark Museum New Jersey . . . . . . . .  00.185
Collection: Princeton Library Vermeule (NC2002-72)143A
Collection: Smithsonian National Numismatic. . .  .362:189
Illustrated: Century Magazine 54:6 (June 1897) p . 198,199
Illustrated: International Studio 33:2 (Feb 1908) p . . . . 138
Illustrated: A15 {1971} Vermeule Art in America, p .94-95
Illustrated: P8 Medallic Sculpture 2 (Fall 1985) page . . . . 8
Illustrated: P9 Medallies (1987) both sides, page. . . . . . . 77
Illustrated: MA2 {1999} Stahl, Medal In America, 137-138
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 71
Illustrated: M57 {2007} Jaeger-Bowers, 100 Great #53 p 64
Illustrated: M62 {2008}Swoger, Nat Comm Medals p . . 34
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, color p 14

1893 Columbian Exposition Medal (small size gold using
St-Gaudens and Barber designs) . . . . . . . . . . .
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  PCA 59:11

1905 Roosevelt (Theodore) Inaugural Medal (designed by
Saint-Gaudens, modeled by Adolph Weinman; reductions
made by Henri Weil from Weinman’s 20-inch models;
struck by Tiffany) . . .  Reliefs 55, Baxter 78, Dryfhout 197,
Tolles 46, Levine TR 1905
Auctions:. . . . BMP 2:5779-5781; PCA 43:22, PCA 44:239,
PCA 55:116, PCA 64:275, PCA 68:239, PCA 70:291,
PCA 71:14, PCA 73:443
Collection: American Numismatic Society. . . .  1961.137.1
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . 2008.112
Collection: Princeton Library Vermeule (NC000) . . . . . 160
Exhibited: Utah Museum of Fine Arts (1991) . . . . . . . . .160
Illustrated: Art & Archaeology 8: (July-Aug 1919) p . . .199
Illustrated: Vermeule A15 {1971} Numismatic Art p. . . 109
Illustrated: Jaeger-Bowers M57 {2007} 100 Great #27, p 38
Illustrated: Jaeger M61{2008} U.S. Tokens, Medals, p .198
Illustrated: Moran N39 {2008} Striking Change p  C18, 230
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 47

1905-6 Cornish Masque Commemorative Plaquette (records
say cast, but looks struck; made by Tiffany & Co,
who may have, indeed, made dies and struck the 90
pieces required) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Baxter 79, Dryfhout 202
Auctions: Schulman (H.M.F.) unkown date
Collection: American Numismatic Society. . . . . 1961.137.3
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . .  08.216
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 49

1906 Franklin (Benjamin) Bicentennial Medallion (designed
by Augustus, modeled by Louis Saint-Gaudens;
reductions and dies cut by Henri Weil, produced
by Tiffany). . . . . . . . .Baxter 81, Freeman 188, MAco 06-02
Greenslet GM-118 to GM-120, Fuld FR.M.UN.7
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  BMP 2:5683; PCA 67:384
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . .06.1192
Collection: Smithsonian National Numismatic. . . . .381:298
Collection: Princeton Library Vermeule (NC000) . . . . . 164
Exhibited: Utah Museum of Fine Arts (1991) . . . . . . . . .164
Illustrated: Nat Scu Soc Exhibit Cat (4-25 Apr 1908) p . . 15
Illustrated: [Trees] Medallic Art in Commerce (1927) p . .14
Illustrated: P2 The Numismatist (December 1956) p . . 1386
Illustrated: TAMS Journal 6:1 (March-April 1966) p . . .  39
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, color p .19
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, p 245-246

     R  E  P  L  I  C  A  S    &    R  E  I  S  S  U  E  S 

1889 Washington Inauguration Centennial New York Medal
(struck white metal bronzed) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Douglas 54
Auctions:. . . . . . . . . .CAL 28:544; J&J 15:257, J&J 21:479,
J&J 27:953; PCA 58:250, PCA 59:1670, PCA 60:225

1889 Washington Inauguration Centennial New York Committee
Badge (Tiffany medal, 48). . . . . . . . . . . . .

1893 Columbian Exposition Medal (replicated and issued
by recipient, C. Emmerich & Co.) . . .. . .  Eglit 19, HK 223,
Rulau X1
Auctions:. . . . . . . . BMP 1:4148; CAL 28:211; J&J 8:1311,
PCA 45:1111-1112, PCA 55:122, PCA 52:1129-1130
Collection: American Numismatic Society. .  1935.999.308 

1896 Smithsonian Institution Hodgkins Medal (also called
the Hodgkins Committee of 1895 Medal; modeled by Jules
C. Chaplain, rev seal design by Augustus Saint-Gaudens)
[named for donor Thomas G. Hodgkins; competition for
design of medal won by Olin Warner, but unaccepted and
medal commissioned to Chaplain; medal replaced in
1965 by Hodgkins Medal by Manca (65-102)]. . . Baxter 12,
Mazerolle 50, Dryfhout 150
Collection: American Numismatic Society. . . .  1926.116.3 

1914 Maynard (George) Portrait Relief Plaque . . . . . . . . .

1914 Shaw Monument Court of Honor Medal (Saint-Gaudens’s
Shaw Monument appears on obv of header medal with
bell-shaped drop). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Storer 308

1962 Saint-Gaudens Coin Designer Medal (obv in imitation
of Saint-Gaudens’s Columbian Expo Medal; engraved
by Robert Schabel, struck by Metal Arts, Rochester NY,
issued by Toivo Johnson) . . . . . . . . .  Rulau XA4, Eglit 379
Auctions:. . . . . . . . .CAL 28:496; CAL 29:760; J&J 8:1132,
J&J 8:1622, J&J 25:1434, J&J 26:747; NAS 65:2278,
NAS 65:2280; NAS 72:450; PCA 46:1296-1297,
PCA 48:421, PCA 52:1504, PCA 53:1601, PCA 55:1676,
PCA 56:1784, PCA 58:1953, PCA 57:1866-1867,
PCA 59:1934, PCA 60:1596, PCA 61:1348, PCA 64:2046,
PCA 65:1854, PCA 67:928, PCA 71:1394-1395
Collection: American Numismatic Society [>1]  1981.101.1

E X O M E D A L L I C

1875-1876 Bryant Vase (designed by James Horton Whitehouse
(q.v.), cast in silver by Tiffany & Co, decorated with five
of six medallions by Augustus Saint-Gaudens) . . . ..Tolles 7
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . . . .77.9
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . . p 11

S  C  U  L  P  T  U  R  E

1880 Children of Prescott Hall Butler Marble Relief. . Drythout 99,
Tolles 16
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . . . . . 05.15.1
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 53

1882 Saint-Gaudens (Homer Schiff) Marble Relief. Dryfhout 100-2
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 18

1884 White (Bessie Smith) Marble Relief (Mrs. Stanford
White) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Tolles 21, Dryfhout 109-1
Collection: Meropolitan Musem of Art . . . . . . . . .1976.388
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 27

1884-85 Children of Jacob Henry Schiff Marble
Relief . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 119-2
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 20

1888 Chase (William Merritt) Relief . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dryfhout 131
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 29

1892-1903 Victory Statue  [model for 1907 $20 Gold
piece]. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Dryfhout 184-9
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 41

1899 Lowell (Josephine Shaw) Marble Relief . . . . .  Dryfhout 172,
Tolles 43
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art .. . . . . . . . .  25.89

1905 Golden Bowl of the Masque . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, page . 367

1905ca Head of Victory (same as model for Victory Relief, also
called Niki-Eiphnh Relief, see above). . . . . . . . . .
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, page . 211

1905 Saint-Gaudens (Augusta) Portrait Relief (Augustus’s last
work, a portrait of his wife, cast by Gorham). . . . . . . . .
Illustrated: N39 {2008} Moran, Striking Change, color p 32

1908 Fete at Cornish Relief (cast by Gorham) [see struck plaquette
above, Baxter 79, Dryfhout 202] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

1908 Magee Memorial Relief (cast by Gorham) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Portrait medals of Augustus Saint-Gaudens:

1898 Saint-Gaudens (Augustus) Cast Plaquette (modeled by
Helen F. Mears in 1898, plaquette carries 1916 copyright
date, cast by Gorham). . . . . . . . Baxter 214, ANS (IECM) 1
Collection: American Numismatic Society. . . . . .1923.55.1
Exhibited: Art Institute of Chicago AE2 (1916) no. . . . 780
Illustrated: MA1 {1988} Stahl, Medal In America, p . . 205

1901 Pan American Exposition Special Medal of
Honor [by James Earle Fraser] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Baxter 107
Collection: Metropolitan Museum of Art . . . . . .  09.114a,b
Illustrated: The Century Magazine 75 (1908) page  . . .  713
Illustrated: Vermeule A15 {1971} Numismatic Art p. . .127
Illustrated: MA1 {1988} Stahl, Medal In America, p . . 186
Illustrated: A49 {2009} Tolles. Saint-Gaudens Exhib . .p 77

1928 Saint-Gaudens Plaquette [by Warner
Williams] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  MAco 28-44

1937 Saint-Gaudens Plaquette [modeled by John
Flanagan in 1934, struck 1937]. . . . . . . . . . . . . . MAco 37-15

1969 New Hampshire Statehood Series Medal [by
Ralph J. Menconi] . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .MAco 62-2-32

1971 Saint-Gaudens Hall of Fame for Great Americans
Medal [by Stanley F. Martineau] . . . . . . . . . . . MAco 63-1-70

                                 A  R C  H   I  V  E  S

AAA Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 9 items on partial microfilm reels D10,
3621.

GA Gorham Company Archives.

MACO [Trees (Clyde Curlee)] Medallic Art in Commerce, Civics, Philanthropy, Letters
and Science. New York: Medallic Art Company (1927) 39 pages.

                                  C  O  L  L  E  C  T  I  O  N  S

C4  {1912} Comparette 189, p 362; 279 377; 298 381; 372 391.

C8  {1965} Gardner 10.223, 12.76.4 p 46-48; 12.29 48; 12.76.1 50; 17.104 50-51;

              90.18.1, 06.1192, 08.216, 13.78, 24.20 56.

C12 {1977} Mayor and Davis 1–7, p 154.

C13 {1992} Freedman and Frank 320-326, p 154-156.

C14 {1996} Marqusee 346-349, p 68-69, (biography) 95.

                                       R  E  F  E  R  E  N  C  E  S

E3  {1902-30} Forrer 2:215-216; 5:298-301.

E4  {1903} Caffin. American Masters of Sculpture.

BL  {1906} A.L.A. Portrait Index, p 1280.

P1  {1907} American Journal of Numismatics 42: (1907) p 31.

P2  {1908} The Numismatist 20:9 (September 1908) p 266.

P2  {1909} Saxton (Burton H.)  St-Gaudens Biography. The Numismatist 22:6 (June 1909) p
161.

NE2 {1911} ANS (IECM) 25-27, p 335 (biography), illus 338; [Grimes p 118].

D5  {1915} Earle, p 275.

P2  {1920} Anon. Trial Pieces of St-Gaudens Eagles and Double Eagles. The Numismatist 33:8
(August 1920) p 348-349, illus.

M10 {1923} Storer (Massachusetts) 308 p 41, 1321 171, 1949 254.

D8  {1926} Fielding, p 314, 511-512

M12 {1927} Eidlitz 666.

A2  {1927} Fairman, p 327 (portrait), 359-360, passim.

M14 {1931} Storer (medical) 1375, p 213-214, 2452 342, 3367 455.

D12 {1937} College Art Association, p 161-171, 176, 177, 179-180.

M17 {1937} National Maritime W 3, p 268-269.

R6  {1950ca} Weil.  Unpublished manuscript. (Flanagan recommends Henri Weil reduce Saint-Gaudens’ model of Benjamin Franklin Medal.)

P2  {1943} Saxton (Burton H.)  Two Famous Americans: Augustus Saint-Gaudens and J. Edouard Roiné. The Numismatist 56:1 (January 1943) p 94-96.

B1  {1943} Who Was Who, p 1073.

BE  {1943} Webster’s Biographical Dictionary, p 1302.

S7  {1949} Douglas 53-54.

P2  {1956} Saxton (Burton H.)  Franklin Bicentennial Medallion.  The Numismatist 69:12
(December 1956) p 1386-1387, illus.

101 {1956} Walters 195.

N10 {1958} Adelson, passim.

D17 {1960} Wadia.

P2  {1961} Numismatic Experiment: Twenty-dollar Gold Piece Designed by St-Gaudens  Archaeology 14:4 (April 1961) p 216-217, illus.

S14 {1963} Eglit 19, p 24; 90 41; 330 79; 379 85.

M20 {1963} Hibler and Kappen 223, p 28.

M21 {1964} Freeman 188, p 93.

M25 {1965} U.S. Mint, p 260.

P4  {1966} Fuld (George J.)  New Franklin Medal by St-Gaudens TAMS Journal 6:2 (March-April 1966) p 39.

N16 {1967} Taxay, p 18, 19, 72.

A12 {1968} Craven, passim, (biblio) 746.

P2  {1968} Lannon (D.B.) A Living Coinage. The Numismatist 81:3 (March 1968) pp 283-300, illus.

A13 {1968} Proske, p 7-11, (biblio) 538.

K24c{1969} Smithsonian Institution.  Augustus Saint- Gaudens The Portrait Reliefs in The
National Portrait Gallery. Cited herein as “Reliefs.”

P6   {1969} Taxay (Don)  Saint-Gaudens and the United States Mint. Coins 16:11
(November 1969) pp 34-41, illus.

A14 {1970} Osborne, p 1032.

A15 {1971} Vermeule, passim.

C10 {1972} Norton (73), (75) p 31.

N21 {1974} Clain-Stefanelli, p 170, 242; illustrations 145, 171.

A18 {1974} Goode, p 45.

AEW {1976} Whitney Museum of Art (bio) p 306-307.

M39 {1981} Levine p 37-39, (biography) 103.

A26 {1982} Baigell, p 315-316.

K24a{1982} Dryfhout (John H.)  The Work of Augustus St- Gaudens. Hanover & London:
University Press of New England. 356 pp, illus. Major catalog. Coins: 204, p 280, 204A 280-81, 204B 281-82, 204C 283-287.  Reliefs passim. Cast medals: 86 106, 134 177-78, 168 232-33, 180 248-49, 197 271, 199 273, 205 288. Struck medals: 151 201-02, 202 276-77. Extensive bibliography.

A27 {1983} Evert, p 430-431.

E17 {1983} Pessolano-Filos, p 102.

N27 {1984} Jung, p 221.

BF1 {1985} Falk, p 538.

P8    {1985} Leotti (Elaine J.)  Augustus Saint-Gaudens Rejected by Senate Committee.  Medallic Sculpture 2 (Fall 1985) p 8.

S48  {1985} Rulau and Fuld (Douglas) 53, p 216-217.

D33  {1986} Opitz, p 805-806.

M42 {1987} Baxter 77, p 5; 73-81 28-31; 86-87 34; 201-203, 54; 107 38; 164 46.

O12 {1988} Breen 7094-7137,p 558-561; 7355-7419 572-578.

AE1 {1988} Falk, p 2:421.

S52  {1989} Rulau, Discovering America X3, X4, p 139.

AE2 {1990} Art Institute of Chicago, p 780.

AE5 {1990} National Academy of Design, p 456.

BW6{1990} Rubinstein, p 119, 123-141.

N31 {1992} Smith. American Numismatic Biographies, p 205-206.

A32 {1993} Reynolds, 187, passim.

A33 {1993} Salmon, p 21-24, (biblio) 285.

A44 {1996} Salmon, American Masters, p 53.

BANB{1999} American National Biography, p 19:198-201, by Lois Goldreich Marcus.

BF2 {1999} Falk. Who Was Who in American Art, p 3:2874-2875.

MA2 {1999} Stahl (Alan M., editor) The Medal in America: ∙ Thayer Tolles  “A Bit of Artistic Idealism: Augustus Saint-Gaudens’s World’s Columbian Exposition Commemorative Presentation Medal” pp 135-156.

P2  {2001} Kuhl (Jason F.)  The Portrayal of Native Americans on U.S. Coinage. The Numismatist 114:2 (February 2001) p 150-155.

N36 {2002} Bowers, More Adventures, p 275-286 (U.S. 1907 $20 gold Roman numeral date).

N37  {2005} Burdette. Renaissance of American Coinage, all 3 volumes passim.

D3a  {2006} Benezit.Dictionary of Artists, p 12:262.

M57 {2007} Jaeger (Katherine) and Bowers (Q. David)  100 Greatest American Medals and Tokens. 1905 Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Medal, listed as #27, p 38; 1893 Columbian Exposition Award Medal listed as #79, p 90.

A49  {2009} Tolles (Thayer)  Augustus Saint-Gaudens in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: New York: Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, and New Haven and London: Yale University (2009) 80 pages, illus [exhibition of 58 items].

M61 {2008} Jaeger (Katherine) Guide Book of United States Tokens and Medals, p 198.

N39  {2008} Moran (Michael F.)  Striking Change; The Great Artistic Collaboration of Theodore Roosevelt and Augustus Saint-Gaudens. [Major work on Saint-Gaudens in American coin and medal numismatics.]

N41 {2009} Reed (Fred). Abraham Lincoln, The Image of His Greatness, p 84, 154, 155- 157, 177, 181, 188, 192, 195-196, 198, 219, 224, 228.

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Eric P Newman Medal

Medal Awarded to Eric P. Newman on his 100th Birthday

Yesterday I bestowed a gold medal to a life-long numismatic friend. It was a dual pleasure. I received as much pleasure in presenting this medal as my friend displayed in receiving it.

The gold medal was presented to Eric P. Newman, Saint Louis businessman, lawyer and philanthropist, but not for any of those fields. It was awarded to him for the thirteen numismatic books he had written. The medal was sponsored by the Rittenhouse Society, a group of numismatists who encourage numismatic literature.

Best of all it was presented to him on the occasion of his one hundredth birthday!

The medal bore his portrait on the obverse. At the sides were symbols of a quill and a lamp of knowledge. The quill was symbolic of writing, the lamp of knowledge for the knowledge he had captured in his books and was passing on to future generations. Lettering on a flowing ribbon contained the inscription of his name and the fact his centennial year occurred in 2011.

For the reverse – and here I had input from his family who had suggested the theme – were displayed two shelves of books, thirteen of which bore the names of the books he had written. On the top shelf was also a tiny statue of David Rittenhouse, first director of the United States Mint. The sponsoring group, the Rittenhouse Society, was named after Director Rittenhouse.

Below was an open book in an area numismatists call the exergue – that’s the space formed by the curve of the medal and straight line above. The open book bore an image again of David Rittenhouse taken from a very famous painting by Charles Wilson Peale. Rittenhouse was a scientist in his day, he is shown with a telescope, just one of his scientific interests. (Obviously it is not a TV camera as it might first appear to a 21st century observer, that would be a gross incongruity.)

Issuing a medal for a member’s one hundredth year was suggested by one Rittenhouse member, Joel Orosz. The organization does not have officers, formal structure, or even a treasury. Another member spoke up, Q. David Bowers, who suggested I oversee such a medallic project. If we had titles, that would mean I was named Rittenhouse Medal Chairman. But we do not have committees, nor chairman. We bask in the casualness of the society’s lack of structure.

With a lack of a treasury, we had to access ourselves a fee for the production of the intended medal. Another member, John Adams, agreed to solicit and receive donated checks. Within days of his email message more than half of the members had pledged the suggested amount. It was enough to obtain the best medallic artist in the country and obtain the best-made dies for striking the medal.

Here is where my past medallic experience came into play. I knew of a seasoned medallic artist who could design and model the exquisite medal I envisaged. He had to be a good portrait artist who could model oversize so his plaster pattern could be reduced to include a great deal of minute detail.

In addition to an accurate portrait, the minute detail greatly adds to the charm of a medal. A medal designer has to be a master of symbolism, know what symbols are appropriate and how to weave these into the design, yet not to overwhelm the portrait as the featured device.

I commissioned Luigi Badia, a sculptor of more than a hundred medals among his portfolio of reliefs, statues and full size figures. Born in Italy, he came to America with his family as a 10-year old.  (I once stated there must be something in the drinking water in Italy to spawn so many talented medallic artists.)  He is largely self-taught, but has mastered his chosen art to become a full professional member of the National Sculpture Society.

This was Fall 2010. At the time I planned for the medal to be needed for the following year’s Rittenhouse Society meeting at the annual convention of the American Numismatic Association in August in Chicago. We had planned to bestow the medal to Eric Newman at that time. Artist Badia had ample time to work this model at his leisure, among his other assignments and commissions.

But then we learned Eric was not planning to attend the Chicago convention. So I decided to make the presentation on, or near, his May 25th birthday. That decision required to advance the time required for the completion of the model. Consummate professional that he was, sculptor Badia was able to do this.

It was the reverse design, however, that just wasn’t right. Badia had made three reverse design drawings of the book theme. I wanted a little more interest in the design. Here is where I enlisted the aid of another medallic artist, Joel Iskowitz, to add more interest to the reverse. He suggested the Rittenhouse statue and rearranged the ribbon containing the lettering.

With full knowledge of artist’s egos, I showed Joel’s proposed sketch to Luigi. “Would this work for the reverse?” I asked Luigi. I needn’t have worried. He immediately saw the improvement over his own design and readily accepted the sketch to model.

With the deadline fast approaching, Luigi finished both models to my approval. He shipped the plaster models to Medallic Art in Dayton, Nevada. We got the best artist, who created magnificent models. It was natural we wanted the best medallic producer. They cut the dies and struck the medal in time for yesterday’s formal presentation.

The Newman family had gathered in New York City for a Memorial Day weekend celebration of Eric’s 100th birthday. Asked what he wanted for this special birthday, Eric responded “barbecue ribs and all my children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren around me.”

The presentation of the gold medal was made to Eric Newman in his New York City hotel suite. Present was his wife Evelyn, daughter Linda, son Andrew, and grandchildren. (Smaller members of the Newman clan were in another room.)

Rittenhouse Society members Scott Rubin and John Kraljdevich joined me in making the presentation among the intimate family members gathered. Photographs were taken, I said a few words, how I had met Eric in 1955 and we had long conversations about numismatic books at the time. Eric said a few words and more photographs were taken.

I got the feeling I was part of numismatic history. The pride in the part I had played in giving pleasure to this 100-year old friend rose within me. I could see the pride, the pleasure, Eric had when he first viewed his portrait on his medal.

“That looks like me!” he said.

Medallic art has the unique trait of giving extreme pleasure to a recipient of a medal. No matter if it bears the portrait of the recipient or not, it is recognition of the achievements in one’s lifetime. This is increased many fold when it is, indeed, the recipient’s own portrait.

It is well known, medallic art has great longevity. I mentioned this fact in my remarks. I stated this medal will last for centuries, it lets the world know we recognized the person portrayed on this medal as the great numismatist he is. That his peers recognized this, that this imperishable miniature work of art documents that fact.

Eric displayed his pleasure in receiving the medal. I shared that same human feeling in being able to bestow that medal to him.

A previous event.  I recall a similar event many years ago when the former president of Medallic Art Company was given a medal.  William Trees Louth was the member of the New York City Rotary Club. Even as a manufacturer of medals he was bestowed a medal by this organization, I don’t remember what for, but in his acceptance remarks he said:

“I don’t know how this got all the way through the plant without me knowing about it.  But his makes me feel so good I am going back to the office and raise all the prices on all the award medals we make!”

Bestowing a medal bestows great pleasure along with it.

But award medals are not the only pleasure offered by medals. There is pleasure in commemorative medals as well. Mankind likes to remember notable events of the past, particularly events that changed the course of mankind’s existence. Work that event into an artistic scene, show that on a medal, fashion that in an artistic way as a miniature work of art, you have an object that deserves veneration. And preservation!

Issue that as a fine art medal on a significant anniversary – that is reason enough to create such an object – and you have the formulae for a successful medal. Thus we recognize medallic art is so closely related to anniversary celebrations.

We need only remember the great event of the American Bicentennial of 1976 which spawned the massive issuance of medallic memorials. Medals were issued by everyone, the nation, by states, cities, communities, organizations of every kind. We celebrated with permanent metal art objects. It is a way of communicating to future citizens we honored this event, and memorialized it in a very permanent way.

Owing such a commemorative medal is a tacit endorsement of the event or celebration and a personal joy to recall that by the medal in the owner’s hand. The artistic design further heightens the symbolic significance to the medal’s owner and to all who view it. While a significant historical artifact, it exudes pleasure to the owner.

This pleasure is compounded – as could be expected – to the owner of a medal collection. If he owns one medal that gives him pleasure, think what a well-formed collection would be. If the medals are well designed, well struck, of an artistic nature, and of similar theme that has some great meaning to a collector, you can understand his great pride.

Collectors often choose themes of personal interest, personal meaning. It could be of their profession, or ethnic or national heritage – no matter what his collecting specialty, he alone has chosen his subject.

It is my pleasure to view these collections. I recognize the effort and the commitment that went in to forming medal collections. Pull out a tray and show me your medal collection.

I am blessed.  I am associated with a field that generates so much pleasure. At every level.

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Frank Hagel

Frank Hagel

MY ARTIST DATABANK indicated Frank Hagel was dead. I was surprised when Rob Vugteveen informed me that Frank Hagel was on the Internet with a current web site. I eagerly volunteered to contact the artist for several reasons, not the least of which to update and correct my artist databank, but also to fill in information that was missing because of a lack of files from the past.

I dialed the number on his web site and he answered the phone himself. Identifying who I was and the purpose of the call, which led to an engaging conversation that quickly warmed as it progressed. The artist revealed a self-confident assurance of a senior professional long accustomed to his place in the world and his position in his chosen field. He relayed facts in an easy-going way, void of any padding or hyperbole.

Here is what I learned:

  • Frank Hagel is indeed very much alive and well, living in Kalispell, the Montana town of his birth, and where he has lived for the past forty years.
  • He was indeed the sculptor of those early National Parks medals and did forty of them in 1972 and 1973, plus two in later years.
  • He (obviously) was not the Frank Hagel listed in the Social Security Death Index as having died in 1985.
  • He remembered Bill Louth, the president of Medallic Art Company at the time, as he had made two trips to New York City and visited with Bill at the plant on East 45th Street.
  • He did remember a salesman of the firm had visited him in Kalispell, but he did not remember the name until I mentioned Bob Southerland.
  • He is a painter more than a sculptor, with nine of his paintings – all of a Western American theme – on his web site, “with ten more to go on.”
  • He did design and model some medals struck by another firm, not Medallic Art.
  • He spent his entire life in Kalispell, except for his education and his first job as a commercial artist in Detroit from 1959 to 1971.
  • He was aware some Monument medals had been added to the National Park Series, and he had done several of these.

I had asked about the models of the National Park Medal Series he had created. He was aware he had omitted the lettering. That was for Medallic Art Company to add to his models. He knew someone had to do this. He was unaware it was sculptor Joseph Di Lorenzo until this fact came out in our conversation.

He also cleared up a question about the Yellowstone Medal that preceded the National Park Series. In 1970, he designed a Yellowstone George Catlin Medal. Medallic Art commissioned California artist Boris Buzan to model Hagel’s designs.

But Buzan’s models were rejected, so Frank Hagel assumed the task of modeling them himself, his first attempt at bas-relief creations. These were accepted by the members of the newly created firm, Roche Jaune (French for “Yellow Stone”).

George Catlin Yellowstone Medal

George Catlin Yellowstone Medal

This led to his becoming the sculptor member of the Roche Jaune venture team. He not only created the design, he modeled these designs as well!

The National Park Medal Series

As I remember, the National Park Foundation of the U.S. Department of Interior was involved with Roche Jaune and Medallic Art in their endorsement of the National Park Series. It had given their tacit approval of the series early in the promotion of the series.

Up to 1984 there were indeed only forty medals in the series – all by Frank Hagel. I sold a set of these in one of my auction sales (23 September 1989).

Since that time, and under the Medallic Art management of both Don Schwartz and Bob Hoff, additional medals were added to this original forty. For the most part, these additions were for monuments, creating an intermixing of the National Parks with National Monuments in the series.

The number system may appear chaotic, but it reflects the addition of parks and monuments after the original series had been established. Here is a complete list as best as I can determine at this time.

National Park or Monument MACo Archive Number Artist
1 Acadia, NE 1972-008-005 Frank Hagel
2 Arches, UT 1972-008-035 Frank Hagel
3 Arlington Cemetery, DC 2001-215 ?
4 Badlands, SD 1991-119 Tanya Mack
5 Big Bend, TX 1972-008-031 Frank Hagel
6 Bryce Canyon, UT 1972-008-035 Frank Hagel
7 Cabrillo, CA 1973-018 Frank Hagel
8 Canyonlands, UT 1972-008-033 Frank Hagel
9 Capitol (U.S.), DC 1999-104 Frank Hagel
10 Capitol Reef, UT 1972-008-037 Frank Hagel
11 Carlsbad Caverns, NM 1972-008-021 Frank Hagel
12 Crater Lake, OR 1972-008-023 Frank Hagel
13 Death Valley, CA 2005-126 ?
14 Denali, AK 1984-188 Frank Hagel
15 Devil’s Tower, WY 2000-057 Doug Birdwell
16 Dinosaur, CO, UT 2000-159 Don Everhart
17 Everglades, FL 1972-008-023 Frank Hagel
18 Fort Clatsop, OR 1981-090 S. Winlass
19 Gettysburg, PA 1995-125 Tanya Mack
20 Gila Cliff Dwellings, NM 2000-099 ?
21 Glacier, MT 1972-008-002 Frank Hagel
22 Golden Gate, CA 1990-085 ?
23 Grand Canyon, AZ ? ?
24 Grand Teton, WY 1972-008-004 Frank Hagel
25 Great Smoky Mountains, NC, TN 1972-008-006 Frank Hagel
26 Guadalupe Mountains, TX 1972-008-034 Frank Hagel
27 Haleakala, HI 1972-08-018 Frank Hagel
28 Hawaii Volcanoes , HI 1972-008-010 Frank Hagel
29 Hot Springs, AR 1972-008-137 Frank Hagel
30 Isle Royale, MI 1972-008-035 Frank Hagel
31 Iwo Jima, DC 2000-161 ?
32 Jefferson Memorial, DC 1996-130 Jurek Jakowicz
33 Kings Canyon, CA 1972-008-017 Frank Hagel
34 Lassen Volcanic, CA 1972-008-025 Frank Hagel
35 Lincoln Memorial, DC 1996-146 Jurek Jakowicz
36 Mount Reiner, WA 1972-008-008 Frank Hagel
37 Mammoth Cave, KY 1972-008-01 Frank Hagel
38 Mount Rushmore 1973-097 Frank Hagel,Joseph DiLorenzo
39 Mesa Verde, CO 1972-008-022 Frank Hagel
40 Niagara Falls, NY 2000-102 Doug Birdwell
41 North Cascades, WA 1972-008-027 Frank Hagel
42 Olympia, WA 1972-008-011 Frank Hagel
43 Petrified Forest, AZ 1972-008-016 Frank Hagel
44 Platt, OK 1972-008-015 Frank Hagel
45 Redwood, CA 1972-008-030 Frank Hagel
46 Rocky Mountains, CO 1972-008-009 Frank Hagel
47 Saguaro, AZ 2000-053 Doug Birdwell
48 Sequoia, CA 1972-008-019 Frank Hagel
49 Shenandoah, VA 1972-008-012 Frank Hagel
50 Statue of Liberty, NY ? ?
51 U.S.S. Arizona, HI 2000-100 Doug Birdwell
52 Vietnam Memorial, DC ? ?
53 Virgin Islands, VI 1972-008-037 Frank Hagel
54 Voyageurs, MN 1972-008-024 Frank Hagel
55 Washington Monument, DC 1994-124 Miko Kaufman
56 White House, DC 1999-193 ?
57 Wind Cave, SD 1972-008-018 Frank Hagel
58-60 Yellowstone-Catlin 1970-159-02 Frank Hagel
61 Yosemite, CA 1972-008-001 Frank Hagel
62 Zion, UT 1972-008-020 Frank Hagel

The entry on Frank Hagel from Dick Johnson’s Databank

HAGEL, Frank (1933-) painter, sculptor.
Born Kalispell, Montana, 20 December 1933.
Received art education prior to 1959.
Commercial artist, Detroit: 1959-1970.
Returned to Kalispell in 1970.
Sculptor member of firm, Roche Jaune (“yellow stone”), 
which issued medal series for all U.S. National Parks.

MEDAL SERIES

Roche Jaune Series
1970 Yellowstone National Park Centennial Medal [designed by Hagen;
modeled by Boris Buzan, but model rejected] MACo 1970-146
1970 Yellowstone/George Catlin Medal 
[designed and modeled by Hagel] MACo 1970-159-001
1970 Yellowstone/George Catlin Medal 
[designed and modeled by Hagel] MACo 1970-159-002
Auctions: J&J 8:1207, J&J 16:1109

National Parks Centennial Series
(the Keystone Medal and all in the series 
were designed and modeled by Frank Hagel 
with lettering by Joseph Di Lorenzo, 
marketed by Roche Jaune):
1972 National Parks Centennial Keystone Medal 
[large 2 ½-inch size] MACo 1972-007
1972 National Parks Centennial Keystone Medal 
[small 1 ½-inch size, as all others in series] MACo 1972-012
Auctions: CAL 35:130; J&J 8:1212
1972 Yosemite National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-001
Auctions: J&J 8:1153
1972 Glacier National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-002
1972 Everglades National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-003
Auctions: J&J 8:1154
1972 Grand Teton National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-004
Auctions: J&J 8:1155
1972 Acadia National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-005
Auctions: J&J 8:1156
1972 Great Smoky Mountains National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-006
Auctions: J&J 8:1157
1972 Grand Canyon National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-007
1972 Mount Rainier National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-008
1972 Rocky Mountain National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-009
1972 Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-010
1972 Olympic National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-011
1972 Shenandoah National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-012
1972 Hot Springs National Park Medal 
[error in date of founding 1927] MACo 1972-008-013
1972 Hot Springs National Park Medal [corrected] MACo 1972-008-013A
1972 Mammoth Cave National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-014
1972 Platt National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-015
1972 Petrified Forest National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-016
1972 Kings Canyon National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-017
1972 Wind Cave National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-018
1972 Sequoia National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-019
1972 Zion National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-020
1972 Carlsbad Caverns National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-021
1972 Mesa Verde National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-022
1972 Crater Lake National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-023
1972 Voyageurs National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-024
1972 Lassen Volcanic National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-025
1972 Bryce Canyon National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-026
1972 North Cascades National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-027
1972 Haleakala National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-028
1972 Virgin Islands National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-029
1972 Redwood National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-030
1972 Big Bend National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-031
1972 Mount McKinley National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-032
1972 Canyonlands National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-033
1972 Guadalupe Mountains National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-034
1972 Isle Royal National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-035
1972 Arches National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-036
1972 Capitol Region National Park Medal MACo 1972-008-037
1973 Cabrillo Historical Site Medal MACo 1973-018
1973 Mount Rushmore National Park Medal MACo 1973-097
1982 Zion National Park 75th Anniversary Medal MACo 1982-293
1984 Denali National Park Medal MACo 1984-188
Groups of fewer than 40 medals:
Auctions: J&J 8:1152; PCA 43:1293
Complete Set of 40 medals:
Auctions: CAL 33:2279

Montana Bicentennial Series
1974 Lewis & Clark Medal MACo 1974-084-001
1974 Fur Trade Medal MACo 1974-084-002
1974 The Cattlemen Medal MACo 1974-084-003
1975 Only the Land Endures Medal MACo 1974-084-004
Auctions: J&J 7:52-53

MEDALS
1989 Montana Statehood Centennial Medal

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One area of medal issuing is of vital importance to a private mint. It was the centerpiece of Medallic Art’s sales activity for forty years from the time of the Great Depression until the time of the American Bicentennial. Every potential medal customer should be asked a simple question.

That question is: “Do you have any significant anniversaries coming up?”

What a birthday cake is to an individual a medal is to an organization. It can be the centerpiece of any anniversary activity. A well-designed medal can be the emblem, the logo, the symbol of that anniversary. It can dramatically reflect the past and inspire the organization’s thrust into the future.

And it serves as an artistic memento of that important milestone of the organization’s existence. It makes a great gift to everyone associated with that organization – employees, suppliers, clients. Also it exemplifies management’s statement as to the organization’s position and importance to society.

The earlier an organization starts planning its anniversary the better.  Normally this is one or two years in advance of the anniversary year. But one example is a textbook case of what can be done. That was for the American Museum of Natural History for their centennial in 1969.

The New York City institution began planning its centennial activities four years in advance!  By the time the actual centennial year arrived it had ready a promotional drive from which all the world learned of its existence, its activity, and its accomplishments.

It ordered its medal two years in advance of its anniversary year. Fortunately it had an artist on its staff who was savvy enough to design a medal that captured the essence of the Museum, its holdings, and the delight of its visitors. The medal featured the skeleton of a dinosaur, one of its featured exhibits.

The medal, MACO 1967-48, of course was struck by Medallic Art, also in Manhattan at the time, crosstown and 20 blocks south from the Museum, adjacent to New York’s Central Park and a Mecca for museum goers. Illustrations of the American Museum of Natural History Centennial Medal appeared everywhere. In advertising, on billboards, on giant banners hung outside the museum building, on transit cards in the city’s subways and busses.

American Museum of Natural History Centennial Medal

American Museum of Natural History Centennial Medal

The medal image was even imprinted on the napkins served with meals in the museum’s cafeteria! There was no limit to how an attractive medal design can serve as the symbol of an organization’s anniversary celebration. No birthday cake was in sight, but the image of the centennial medal was everywhere.

The prospects for anniversary medals are boundless. Obviously, firms serving the public head the list, the bigger he better. But also nonprofit organizations, trade associations, foundations; colleges and universities actively celebrate their anniversaries with medals.

Perhaps the area of greatest profit, however, is State and City anniversary medals.

The two biggest in Medallic Art’s history were California Bicentennial in 1969 and Illinois Sesquicentennial in 1968. Ronald Reagan was governor of California at the time of the bicentennial. There was a committee in charge of the bicentennial celebration, but the governor was kept informed of the medal progress. He took an interest in the medal and even visited the plant in person on a business trip to New York City.

The Illinois Sesquicentennial was so important, and medal sales were so strong, the firm purchased a press in Germany to strike proof surface medals for that one medal alone. The press was flown to NYC! Imagine those costs! But the profit on that one job alone paid for the press and the shipping expense.

More importantly, the Illinois medal was so successful, the firm ultimately hired the director of the Illinois medal sales, Mal Hoffman, to head up the American Bicentennial sales campaign for that upcoming national event!

But don’t overlook city anniversary medals. A collector in Illinois has a collection of over 15,000 medals of American city, town and municipality anniversary medals! A collector in Kansas is writing a book on the state anniversary medals. These medals have a strong heritage among citizens in their area – and often later, among collectors.

Related to anniversary medals is another area of importance to private mints. That is product milestone. Example: General Motors 50 Millionth Car Medal, MACO 1954-4. The firm even struck medals for individual GM divisions.

General Motor's 50 Millionth Auto Medal

General Motor’s 50 Millionth Auto Medal

So every salesman should inquire, not only about upcoming anniversaries, but also these questions:

“What is your organization’s founding date?”

“When was your oldest product first started?

To give some sense of anniversary celebrations – in effect any year can be celebrated – here is a list of the names for significant anniversaries:

Anniversary Names

  • 1st – Anniversary
  • 2nd – Biennial
  • 3rd – Triennial, Triennium
  • 4th – Quadrennial
  • 5th – Quinquennial
  • 6th – Sextennial, Sexennial
  • 7th – Septennial
  • 8th – Octennial
  • 9th – Novennial
  • 10th – Decennial
  • 11th – Undecennial, Undecennary
  • 12th – Duodecennial
  • 13th – Tridecennial
  • 14th – Quadridecennial
  • 15th – Quindecennial
  • 16th – Sextdecennial
  • 17th – Septdecennial
  • 18th – Octodecennial
  • 19th – Novedecennial
  • 20th – Vicennial
  • 21st – Unicennial
  • 22nd – Duovicennial
  • 23rd – Trivicennial
  • 24th – Quadrivicennial
  • 25th – Quinvicennial, Silver Jubilee, Semi Jubilee
  • 26th – Sextevicennial
  • 27th – Septevicennial
  • 28th – Octovicennial
  • 29th – Novevicennial
  • 30th – Tricennial
  • 31st – Untricennial
  • 32nd – Duotricennial
  • 33rd – Tertricennial
  • 34th – Quadritricennial
  • 35th – Quintricennial
  • 36th – Sextetricennial
  • 37th – Septetricennial
  • 38th – Octotricennial
  • 39th – Novetricennial
  • 40th – Quadricennial
  • 45th – Quinquadricennial
  • 50th – Quinquecennial, Semicentennial,Semicentenary, Jubilee, Golden Jubilee
  • 60th – Sextecennial, Diamond Anniversary
  • 70th – Septecennial
  • 75th – Quinseptecennial, Diamond Jubilee
  • 80th – Octocennial
  • 90th – Novecennial
  • 100th – Centennial, Centenary
  • 125th – Quasquicentennial
  • 150th – Sesquicentennial
  • 200th – Bicentennial, Bicentenary
  • 250th – Semiquinquecentennial
  • 300th – Tricentennial, Tercentenary
  • 350th – Semiseptecentennial
  • 400th – Quadricentennial
  • 500th – Quincentennial, Semimillennium
  • 600th – Sextecentennial
  • 700th – Septecemtennial, Septcentennary
  • 800th – Octocentennial
  • 900th – Novecentennial
  • 1000th – Millennium, Millenniary, Millennial
  • 1500th – Sesquimillennium
  • 2000th – Bimillenary

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Political Satire Medals

Four medals that Medallic Art struck for Robert Julian (writer of the catalog on U.S. Mint medals) satirizing four presidents.

AMERICAN politics has appeared on American medals since George Washington was president. During the entire 19th century, politicians used medals to identify themselves, tout their causes, and trumpet their slogans.

While anyone could have a medal made at the Philadelphia Mint, the United States Treasury early on wisely ruled that no political medals could be struck by the Mint. That regulation alone helped to firmly establish a medal industry in America. It gave rise to one- and two-man diesinking shops in the largest cities that supplied political candidates with the medals they desired to distribute to voters.

One has to remember that not every voter in mostly rural America could read, and here was a low-cost item bearing the candidate’s name and usually his portrait. These medals could be handed out freely, but you just could not have the Philadelphia Mint strike them.

A few mint medals did slip by however. A Lincoln Medal of 1864 bears on its reverse the inscription: ABRAHAM LINCOLN AN HONEST MAN THE CRISIS DEMANDS HIS RE-ELECTION 1864.  This dime-sized medal, called a “Cabinet Medal,” is part of a series of small medalets struck at the Mint bearing the portraits of notable presidents and widely muled1 with each other. (That Lincoln medal is Julian PR-35 of U.S. Mint medals, King 112 of Lincoln medals, and DeWitt AL 1864-72 of political medals – collectors love those catalog numbers!)

What killed off this custom of dispersing small political medals was the invention of the celluloid pinback button near the end of the 19th century. It provided the name of the candidate, sometimes his portrait and occasionally a slogan, similar to political medals. These could be made, often in color, at a much lower cost than political medals, and they are still popular today.

Those 19th century political medals are widely collected, perhaps because so many were made for so many candidates over the entire century. They have their own organization, American Political Item Collectors, and, of course, catalogs of these.

One of the largest collections of political medals and related items was amassed by J. Doyle DeWitt, president of Travelers Insurance of Hartford, Connecticut. Of course, his original 1959 catalog, A Century of Campaign Buttons, 1789-1889, aided in collecting these items. Nobody complained that he called these medals buttons (some did have tiny holes at the top to attach to a pin to be worn). He ended his catalog in 1889, because that was the beginning of the celluloid pinback buttons.

DeWitt included other items along with the medals in his collection. This included portrait badges and shell badges, ultimately to include ferrotypes – with an actual photo inserted in a metal shell frame. To this he added all the other political paraphernalia, flags, banners, ribbons, paper objects – the variety is endless.

He donated his vast collection to the University of Hartford where it is located today. I had the pleasure of poring over its contents when the first curator, a very knowledgeable Edmund B. Sullivan, was in charge. Sullivan wrote three books on the collection, including Collecting Political Americana.

Modern Political Medals

Issuing political medals continues today, but less so for campaigns. They are more often issued for inaugurations – the official installations of successful political campaigns – and for fundraising. And, oh yes, for satirical purposes. Medallic Art Company struck a series of five medals for Robert Julian (the same Julian that wrote the catalog on U.S. Mint medals) satirizing four presidents and Douglas MacArthur.

It should be noted, however, that politicians are different from all other people. (Isn’t that a true statement!) Custom has evolved that you can put a politician’s portrait on a medal without having to obtain his permission. Such a proviso exists for no other group of people. It is an invasion of their private rights (and if they are a celebrity they will demand a royalty for doing so). I guess politicians feel the more exposure the better.

A search of Medallic Art Company’s archive of medals reveals ten with a Democrat as either the name of the client or the name of the medal. This contrasts to 58 with a Republican name. These are mostly for the national committee, occasionally for a state committee (one Democrat, three Republican), or even a local committee. The purposes of these medals are widespread – inaugurations, fundraising, conventions, and such in addition to outright campaign medals.

I do not believe the political party disparity is due to any bias in the firms officer’s or salesmen’s political beliefs. Since it is their business to strike medals for any client, their own personal politics should not apply. It is apparent, however, Republicans are far more likely to issue a medal than Democrats for any kind of event.

Campaign Medal Confusion

Just to make things interesting there are two kinds of campaign medals in the numismatic field. Political campaign medals, just described, and military campaign medals. The later are issued to military service personal who serve in a military or naval campaign. They are hung from ribbon drapes and intended to be worn on a uniform. They are collected by members of the Orders and Medals Society and will be the subject of a different article later on.

J.F. Kennedy Presidential Inaugural Medal

J.F. Kennedy Presidential Inaugural Medal

Presidential Inaugural Medals

Medallic Art Company dominated the issuing of presidential inaugural medals for three decades. These are the pinnacle of the political medal spectrum and a prize piece of medal business. This series is so important it likewise deserves a separate article all their own. There are three books on the subject, one of which was published (by the author) as a collectors’ guide.

1 The word “muled” is used to describe a coin or medal that is minted from two dies that were not originally intended to be struck onto obverse and reverse of the same medal.

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The medal “Inspiration” was originally issued in 1974 and in many ways was a noteworthy first. This press release was obtained after a dear reader wanted to know more about the medallion.

AMERICA’S FIRST TWO-PART MEDAL
ISSUED BY MEDALLIC ART COMPANY

Silver Issue Number One Presented to ANA Museum

Bal Harbour, Fla., August 16—”Inspiration,” the first fine art medal struck in America that opens up to reveal two additional surfaces inside—in effect America’s first multiple part medal—was exhibited to the collecting public today at the convention of the American Numismatic Association meeting here this week at the Americana Hotel.

The 2 1/4-inch medal is the creation of Frank Eliscu, a Connecticut sculptor, and is issued by Medallic Art Company of Danbury. The innovative work features the mythological horse Pegasus, symbol of inspiration.

Inspiration Medal Obverse

Inspiration Medal Obverse

Pegasus is shown on the obverse being released from the hand of God; the two inside surfaces show Man capturing Inspiration; and the reverse shows Man and Inspiration in harmony. The unusual medal breaks apart to reveal the two inner surfaces, convex and concave images of the same design.

This novel work of art is struck in both bronze and silver. William T. Louth, president of Medallic Art, will present serial number one of the silver version to the American Numismatic Association.

In a ceremony planned to be held Saturday, August 17th, during the awards presentation, Virginia Culver, president of the national collectors’ organization, will accept the unique silver two-part medal for the organization’s numismatic museum in Colorado Springs.

Inspiration Medal Reverse

Inspiration Medal Reverse

As a work of art, sculptor Eliscu was required to prepare three models—the two inner surfaces were made from the same bas-relief pattern—and to provide an interlocking rim design for the interface surfaces. He solved this design problem by creating a ring of flames, symbolizing earth, for the convex and concave surfaces.

This ring of flames design, no two of which are alike, ingeniously permits the two halves to be put back together only one way. Thus the medal breaks apart to reveal the inside designs and easily fits back together as a complete unit.

Much of the charm of the medal is, indeed, opening it up to examine the inner design and fitting it back together. The medal is made to sustain examination over many years; its finish is such that its four surfaces are protected and will not mar despite this handling.

Inspiration Medal Raised Interior

Inspiration Medal Raised Interior

Creating an innovative medal such as this one came easy to artist Frank Eliscu. Not only is he an accomplished sculptor, author, and teacher, but also a craftsman in many media—crystal, wax, slate, clay—and an authority on casting bronze. In fact, he has written textbooks on most of these subjects.

As a young boy Eliscu modeled figures using candles softened in hot water. He studied at the Beaux-Arts Institute of Design, Pratt Institute, and under sculptor Rudolph Evans. With maturing study, increasing recognition and a growing list of commissions, came the development of a highly individualized technique which has remained with the artist during an active career.

Among his commissions include slate carvings, sculpture in the round, and heroic reliefs, all in distinctive Eliscu style. These are complemented by a number of well executed medals, notably a Society of Medalists issue, the Architectural League of New York Collaborative Medal, and the Encyclopaedia Britannica Bicentennial Medal.

Inspiration Medal Recessed Interior

Inspiration Medal Recessed Interior

His art works include “Atoms for Peace,” a 16-foot heroic bronze figure at Ventura, California, the “Shark Diver,” an undersea fantasy, also in bronze, for Brookgreen Gardens in South Carolina, and “Slate Horses,” for the Bankers Trust Building in New York City.

He has had exhibitions in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Ohio, Massachusetts, Michigan and elsewhere. His work is widely represented in private collections and museums.

He has been much awarded, including the Bennet Prize for sculpture, National Sculpture Society prize, Henry Hering award, and others. He is a fellow of the National Sculpture Society of which he is a past president, an associate of the National Academy of Design, and a member of the Architectural League of New York.

Eliscu’s sculptural forms are, as one art curator once said, “Lean forms in action, wrought with sharp detail to give an impression of wiry strength and nervous energy.” This is certainly true in this innovative medal. Innovation and creativity are nothing new to Medallic Art Company. It has many firsts to its credit, including importing the first Janvier pantograph into America. This machine is credited with the finest reductions of sculptors’ models while it simultaneously cuts a die. Previously dies were all handcut, or only a portion—as a portrait—was reduced from a sculptor’s model. Medallic Art Company struck the first private medal series produced in America, the Circle of the Friends of the Medallion; the first medal with raised lettering on the edge from engraved collars.

The firm produced the first medal with a moving part, that of a magnet, for General Electric’s dedication of its West Milton, New York, atomic plant in 1955. It produced the first medal with a Braille inscription: a fine art medal for the Library of Congress Division of the Blind, the Francis Joseph Campbell Medal, 1966, by Bruce Moore.

The 70-year-old firm also produced the first bimetal medal—with a clad strip of silver on a bronze base—for the 1967 centennial of Handy & Harmon, the precious metal dealers.

It produced the first high relief proof surface medal in 1968 and the first collectors’ plate to be made by bas-relief medallic process.

So, innovation is not new to the Medallic Art Company. It has produced the first multi-part medal similar to several from Europe, the earliest known was “Jonah in the Whale” by French medallist Rene Quillivic.

With the creation of a new product often comes new terminology. D. Wayne Johnson, who wrote the leaflet which accompanies the “Inspiration” two-part medal, states that a study of names was undertaken for the new Medal and the kind of medallic item it is.

A member of the A.N.A. Terms and Standardization Committee, Mr. Johnson said “‘Two-part’ is the shortest term used by those employees of the medal manufacturing firm, along with ‘inspiration’—its name as a work of art.

“But ‘two-part’ implies correctly there are only two components. What if the next creation were of three, or more, parts? And one far-thinking client has already explored having Medallic Art produce a 12-component item.

“Therefore the best overall term must take into consideration these multiple parts. The best term, then, for medallic items of more than one equal components is ‘multi-part’ and ‘two-part’ for those which, of course, have two parts.”

“Inspiration,” America’s first multi-part medal went on sale at the American Numismatic Association convention today. In addition to a bronze variety, at $15, the silver version—which weighs eight ounces of 999 fine silver—at $120, there is also a half-bronze and half-silver version. This sells for $60.

The medals are all serially numbered, in fact twice, once on each part of the medal.

Inspiration Medal Serial Number

Inspiration Medal Serial Number

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