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The E-Sylum: Volume 25, Number 3, January 16, 2022, Article 21

NUMISMAGRAM SELECTIONS: JANUARY 2022

Jeremy Bostwick at Numismagram forwarded these select highlights from the most recent addition of new material to his website at the beginning of the month. This upload is particularly strong in Art Nouveau and Art Deco medals, along with a focus on exonumia that celebrates the passage of time. For all of his new items, please visit numismagram.com/inventory. -Editor

  1900 Germany New Year medal

101874 | GERMANY. New Year silver Medal. Issued 1900. Commemorating the new year and century (38mm, 27.79 g, 12h). By C. Starck & O. Oertel in Berlin. Facing sphinx / ZUR / JAHR- / HUN- / DERTS – WENDE, Hora, in sheer, full-length drapery, standing slightly left, extinguishing one torch and holding another upright. Edge: 990. Strothotte 1900-3; Heidemann 855; Marienburg 7159; GPH 5082. Mint State. Charming gunmetal gray toning, with a delightful matte nature to the surfaces; a few light marks on the reverse are noted for completeness. Compare to a similar example that realized a total of $408 in the recent October 2021 Stack's Bowers CCO. $285.

Offering great Neoclassical artistry, this piece was created for the dawn of the 20th century, seemingly featuring a mythological allegory for the passage of time, Hora. Here, she is depicted in a very sheer drapery, her apparent nakedness revealing the exploits of the previous century, yet her clothing at least obfuscating the events of the new century.

Spooky! I like it. -Editor

To read the complete item description, see:
101874 | GERMANY. New Year silver Medal. (https://www.numismagram.com/product-page/101874)

  Society of the Cincinnati in Virginia medal

101818 | UNITED STATES & FRANCE. Society of the Cincinnati in Virginia bronze Award Medal. Issued 1931. Commemorating the sesquicentennial of the Battle of Yorktown (54mm, 70.63 g, 12h). By R. Tschudin for A. Bacqueville in Paris. Surrender scene at Yorktown (adapted from Reddition de l'armée du Lord Cornwalis by François Godefroy): Comte de Rochambeau standing facing, directing General Charles O'Hara (to right, in lieu of the ill Cornwallis) to surrender the sword of Cornwallis to General George Washington (to left); around, four medals with the portraits of Washington, DeGrasse, Lafayette, and Rochambeau / PRESENTED by the SOCIETY of the CINCINNATI in the STATE of VIRGINIA, emblem of the Society. Edge: Plain. Baker E454; Hume 16; Mt. Vernon Museum M-406/A. Choice Mint State. Olive-brown surfaces, with some lighter yellow highlights. Quite rare and enticing. $745.

Founded in 1783 at a continental army encampment in Newburgh, New York and serving as the nation's oldest patriotic society, the Society of the Cincinnati drew its name from the Roman hero Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus, an embodiment of civic virtue. The Virginia branch commissioned this commemorative medal for the 150th anniversary of the surrender of the British at Yorktown. A number of medals were presented to Herbert Hoover, John Pollard, and other distinguished official visitors to the ceremonies at Yorktown. Just a year later, the bicentennial of the birth of Washington would be celebrated.

Nice medal. I'd never seen one before. -Editor

To read the complete item description, see:
101818 | UNITED STATES. Society of the Cincinnati in Virginia bronze Medal. (https://www.numismagram.com/product-page/101818)

  General Motors 25th Anniversary medal

101857 | UNITED STATES. General Motors 25th Anniversary silvered bronze Medal. Issued 1933 in conjunction with the Chicago World's Fair of Progress/General Motors Exhibition (76mm, 193.00 g, 12h). By R. P. Chambellan (after N. Bel Geddes) for the Medallic Art Company. TO THE ADVANCEMENT OF / MOTOR TRANSPORTATION, streamlined automobile (after that designed by Norman Bel Geddes) speeding right, with lengthy, stylized wing raised above / COMMEMORATING THE TWENTY FIFTH / ANNIVERSARY OF GENERAL MOTORS, stylized piston before laurel wreath. Edge: MEDALLIC ART CO. N.Y. MACo 1933-024; Marqusee 53. Mint State. Silvering nearly fully intact, with a few lightly scattered speckles and marks. Includes a MACO box. A very rare and popular medal with automotive and Art Deco importance. Almost never encountered so alluring, as the silver plating stood up poorly to the test of time on most of the remaining specimens. $1195.

Channeling the iconic, streamlined, "car of the future" design of the famous modernist industrial designer Norman Bel Geddes, this MACO offering celebrates the 25th anniversary of General Motors and was meant to show off the company's forward-thinking concepts at the Chicago World's Fair of Progress in 1933. The company's brochure at the exhibition described the medal as follows: "The face of the medal shows a speeding automotive body behind which a wing rises perpendicularly. Since the medal is to be used as an award in future years and the car of the future is merely a guess, this car is an abstract streamline form without doors or windows.

The conventionalized wing symbolizes General Motors interest in air transportation. The wing being static; the car, by contrast, seems to move more swiftly. / The reverse of the medal shows a combustion chamber...since it is the heart of the motor. It too has been conventionalized." Given its crossover appeal to collectors of Art Deco, modernist, or automotive pieces, or those of General Motors specifically, this type has become incredibly popular. Additionally, due to the poor nature of the silvering, nearly all are encountered with a good deal of the plating worn off or severely discolored. In contrast, this example remains nearly original, with much of the silvering fully intact and without annoying discoloration.

A classic. -Editor

To read the complete item description, see:
101857 | UNITED STATES. General Motors 25th Anniversary silvered bronze Medal. (https://www.numismagram.com/product-page/101857)

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Wayne Homren, Editor

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