Medal Collections
on the Web

 

Medal Organizations

 

Members'  Corner

 

Oral History of  Medallic Art

 

Please Join Us
(MCA Application)

MCA Membership Application

Subscription Type
Comments:




 

MEMBERS' CORNER

In this section we have posted information on Awards, Presentations and Publications of our members.  It includes articles on medals and images and descriptions from their own medal collections.  It also includes videotapes of lectures our members have given on various medallic topics.  I am sure you will enjoy viewing their interesting contributions.

 

CONTENTS


September, 2015: New e-book on the medallic history of Anti-Semitic Medals:  
 A new, free e-book titled: Anti-Semitic Medals: A Retrospective as Chronicled by Historical Medals written by Ben Weiss has been published by Kunstpedia.  It can be viewed at this link.

 

 

February, 2014: John Adams receives ANS Huntington Award:

The following description of the award and biography of John Adams was taken from Wayne Homren's E-Sylum which, in turn, was from the ANS press release:

ANS HUNTINGTON AWARD TO JOHN W. ADAMS

The American Numismatic Society awards its 2014 Archer M. Huntington Award for excellence in numismatic scholarship to John W. Adams.

The Trustees of the American Numismatic Society have voted to award John W. Adams the 2014 Archer M. Huntington Award in recognition of his outstanding career contributions to numismatic scholarship. The award ceremony will be held on Saturday, 26 April 2014 at the Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston. The event will include Mr. Adams’ presentation of the Silvia Mani Hurter Memorial Lecture, Titled A Recidivist Collector, followed by a reception in his honor.

John Adams’ research in the field of numismatics focuses on American and European medals, numismatic literature, and large cents. In his early research, his approach is largely bibliographical. His Monographs on Varieties of United States Large Cents, 1793:1794, published in 1976, provided a concise introduction to the various key publications in this field. His two volumes of United States Numismatic Literature (1982, 1990) are among the most useful bibliographical aids on American numismatic auction catalogues available; in particular Adams’ erudite introductions to the various collectors are widely quoted.

In the last 15 years, Adams has focused primarily on medals, both European and American. His Book The Indian Peace Medals of George III, or, His Majesty’s Sometime Allies, published in 1999, demonstrates his breadth of knowledge; through careful numismatic analysis Adams was able to expand our knowledge in this series. His approach to medals is largely historical, and his subsequent work on The Medals Concerning John Law and the Mississippi System has become a standard work on the peculiar medals satirizing this famous financial crisis of the early 18th century. In this book Adams illustrates his command of historical, financial and numismatic matters. Together with Anne Bentley, Adams Wrote Comitia Americana and Related Medals: Underappreciated Monuments to Our Heritage (2007). In this exhaustive analysis, Adams and Bentley re-wrote our understanding of this important early American series of medals. It is now the definitive historical and numismatic study on the subject. Again, in 2010 Adams wrote the consummate book Medallic Portraits of Admiral Vernon: Medals Sometimes Lie with Fernando Chao and in collaboration with Anne Bentley. This work provides a study of the many varieties of the Vernon series, which often differ only in tiny details, provides historical context, offering a concordance with the many prior studies and much more.

While there is an impressive corpus of books by Adams, he also is a frequent contributor to conference proceedings, journals and other publications. He has published articles about coin sales, individual medals, numismatic personalities, and hoards, to name just a few. His long involvement as editor of The MCA Advisory has turned this publication into a popular, well-- informed publication.

The Chairman of the Society’s Huntington Committee, Dr. Jere Bacharach, described the honoree with the following words: ‘What distinguishes John Adams from other writers is his passion for history, a beautiful, academically correct writing style, and diligence in seeking out overlooked historical and numismatic sources.’

John W. Adams received an AB from Princeton (1957) and a MBA from Harvard (1959). He founded Adams, Harkness & Hill in 1966, an investment bank in Boston, where for the next 40 years he served variously as Director of Research, Chairman and CEO. He has served as a Trustee of the Massachusetts Historical Society, where he was instrumental in conserving its coin cabinet, and as President of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society and the Medal Collectors of America. He is a Fellow of the American Antiquarian Society, as well a Fellow of the American Numismatic Society where he also served on its Board of Trustees and was an active Chairman of the Library Committee.

 

September, 2013:  Publication of new e-book on the MEDALLIC HISTORY OF THE WAR OF 1812

A new e-book titled: Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the Native American Nations, authored by Benjamin Weiss, has been published by Kunstpedia Foundation.  It can be downloaded free from the links below.

It has recently been written up on Wayne Homren's E-Sylum as follows:

Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the American Indian Nations 
by: Benjamin Weiss

The European Americans promised Peace and Friendship with the Native American Nations by bestowing upon Indian Chiefs commemorative medals on which this promise was boldly proclaimed. Little came of man's words and shiny gifts as the battles fought between American and British forces during the War of 1812 led to the practical destruction of the Native American peoples.

Benjamin Weiss, avid collector of historical and commemorative medals, wrote his first eBook titled Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the American Indian Nations, the first publication in its kind to cover the subject of commemorative medals issued during the War of 1812 that concentrates on the role they and the war played in causing the near demise of the Native American Nations.

This eBook examines the War of 1812, using as a canvas historical and commemorative medals issued to the military commanders who fought so valiantly against the greatest naval power in the world. By fighting and driving the British from the newly-formed United States, the Americans accomplished their goal. They also succeeded in devastating the dreams of the Native American Nations, led by their great Shawnee leader Tecumseh. At the conclusion of the war, Tecumseh was dead and with him went the hopes and dreams of a confederated Indian Nation.

With historical medals serving as a backdrop, this ebook chronicles the causes and major battles fought between Americans and British during the War of 1812, a war which served as a catalyst for the virtual destruction of the Native American peoples.

 

George III Indian Peace medal 1814 obverse George III Indian Peace medal 1814 reverse 
1814 George III Indian Peace medal

Richly illustrated, Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the American Indian Nations, is a must read for collectors of historical and commemorative medals. It should be of great appeal to those interested in American history, particularly in the little-known War of 1812 fought between the European Americans and the British and its enormous consequences to the American Indian Nations.

Published by the Kunstpedia Foundation, the eBook Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the American Indian Nations can be downloaded free and without any costs.

Summary: This eBook examines the War of 1812, using as a canvas historical and commemorative medals issued to the military commanders who fought so valiantly against the greatest naval power in the world. By fighting and driving the British from the newly-formed United States, the Americans accomplished their goal. They also succeeded in devastating the dreams of the Native American Nations, led by their great Shawnee leader Tecumseh. At the conclusion of the war, Tecumseh was dead and with him went the hopes and dreams of a confederated Indian Nation. With historical medals serving as a backdrop, this ebook chronicles the causes and major battles fought between Americans and British during the War of 1812, a war which served as a catalyst for the virtual destruction of the Native American peoples.

 

The e-book is very well illustrated, and FREE! I encourage E-Sylum readers to download and read a copy. -Editor

 

1812 alt. cover

For more information, see: eBook Medallic History of the War of 1812: Catalyst for Destruction of the American Indian Nations (www.kunstpedia.com/ebook-medallic-history-of-the-war-of-1812-catalyst-for-destruction-of-the-american-indian-nations.html)

To download the 57-page ebook, see:www.kunstpedia.com/PDFArticles/Medallic%20History
%20of%20the%20War%20of%201812.pdf


 

 

MCA authors publish book on Peace Medals

Several members of our MCA have contributed articles in a wonderful and informative book on Indian Peace Medals.  The book is described below.

Peace Medals: Negotiating Power in Early America

Edited by Robert B. Pickering, Copyright in 2011 by Gilcrease Museum and published in conjunction with the exhibition Peace Medals: Symbols of Influence and Prestige in North America, held Dec. 2011-April 2012.

Contributions by John W. Adams, Bruce W. Arnold, George J. Fuld, Frank H. Goodyear III, Duane H. King, Skyler Lietchy, Tony Lopez, F. Kent Reilly III, and Barry D. Tayman.

The book, as described by Amazon.com, is reproduced below:

"Peace and Friendship." This noble phrase, emblazoned on the back of silver peace medals given by American presidents to chiefs of important tribes in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, is also a glorified representation of the real interactions between the American or European governments and Native American tribes. Peace Medals: Negotiating Power in Early America presents stories of people and events behind the medals, offering insight into the symbolic value of medals from colonial and tribal perspectives spanning several generations up to the present day.

The peace medals themselves are beautiful examples of medallic artistry, but their real importance is in their historical significance. Consisting of eight articles written from a multidisciplinary approach, Peace Medals focuses on the history and significance of the medals, the traditions they represent, and the individuals involved.

The contributors, including numismatic historians, anthropologists, archaeologists, and museum curators, explore how the American government used the medals in negotiations with powerful chiefs to secure trading partnerships and political allegiance against European colonial powers, and also discusses British, French, and Spanish medals as part of European negotiating strategies to create Indian allies on the American continent. The origin of peace medals and their synchrony with tribal traditions demonstrate how these high-status emblems evolved, while an examination of medals in a contemporary context reveals their continuing historical importance.

Peace Medals is richly illustrated with paintings and historical photographs that depict rarely seen images of British, French, and Spanish medals in addition to a selection of American medals. Taken together, the articles provide an expansive view of medallic artistry from the eighteenth to the twentieth century and offer new insights into their history. Most of the images are from the extraordinary collections of the Gilcrease Museum.

Our kudos go to those members of the MCA who have contributed to this classic work.

For more on this book, see articles in Coin World and E-Sylum

 

 

Video of Lecture on Medals Promoting Bigotry:  A video presentation on Medals that Promote Religious and Racial Intolerance, given at Villanova University by Ben Weiss.  This one-hour presentation reviews the history of intolerance as chronicled by medallic art.  Click on this LINK to hear and see this lecture.

 

Adams, Chao and Bentley publish a new book on Admiral Vernon medals: A new book entitled Admiral Vernon Medals- Medals Sometimes Lie   by John Adams, Fernando Chao with the collaboration of Anne Bentley will soon be published.  More information on this important addition to our medallic literature can be found in the press release issued by George Kolbe.  A sample page can also be viewed as a pdf file.  Our heartiest congratulations on this wonderful achievement.

 

Historical and Commemorative Medals on Display in Museum
A group of medals from the Collection of Benjamin Weiss has been put on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  The display consists of 16th and 17th century medals from Italy, France, Germany and The Netherlands.  The medals may be found in the Gallery of Early European Art. 
The display is a  part of Ben's larger collection of
Historical and Commemorative Medals.

 

Ludwig Gies: Cast Art Medals from the Great War  by Henry Scott Goodman
This group of medals was recently exhibited by Scott Goodman at the 2009 ANA Money Show to share a largely unknown and rare collection of early 20th C. German art medals.  They demonstrate a rather poignant, but powerful, view of WWI from the Munich School perspective as opposed to the nationalistic iconography of hero worship created in the Berlin School about the same time.  This exhibit won the "Best of Show” in this 2009 ANA Money Show.
(Link to Exhibit)

Field Day Medals: by Paul G. Lajoie
Sunday World,
FIELD DAY, medals of the New York City Public Schools Athletic League
This collection depicts medals sponsored by the Pulitzer Newspaper, the Sunday World, and awarded to Elementary and High School athletes for activities of a special "FIELD DAY" from 1906 to 1930.

Medallic History of Religious and Racial Intolerance: Medals as Instruments for Promoting Bigotry : by Ben Weiss
This article traces the repercussions of religious and racial intolerance through the eyes of historical and commemorative medals.

The Medals of Admiral Vernon:  by John Adams
John's wonderful treatise of the Admiral Vernon medals.  This interesting article includes an extensive bibliography and is a must read for anyone interested in a discerning view of this group of medals.

Historical and Commemorative Medals:  by Ben Weiss
Ben's personal collection of Historical and Commemorative medals, comprising images and descriptions of over 400 pieces, both European and American, dating from the 16th through the 19th centuries.   Each entry attempts to join the Art with the History of the period that the medals represent.

American School Medals: by John Sallay 
John Sallay's presentation to the 2005 MCA annual meeting held at the San Francisco ANA convention.  John outlines the development of the school award medal (often referred to as a reward of merit) from 16th century continental Europe, through 18th century Britain and Colonial America, to the present day.  The presentation showcases John's extensive collection, including Boston school medals, early American engraved silver and gold medals and U.S. Mint medals.