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The E-Sylum: Volume 25, Number 3, January 16, 2022, Article 28

DR. FREDERICK H. ROSE GOLD MEDALS

Two interesting and important medals were sold in the Heritage 2022 January FUN sale of Part V of the Alan V. Weinberg Collection. -Editor

  Susquehanna Lifesaving Gold Medal obverse Susquehanna Lifesaving Gold Medal reverse

1858 Dr. Frederick H. Rose Gold Lifesaving Medal
Hand-Engraved by Tiffany & Co.
Presented from the Susquehanna Crew

1858 Dr. Frederick H. Rose -- United States Steam Frigate Susquehanna Lifesaving Gold Medal. Uncertified. 77mm. 212.2 grams. Reportedly created in .900+ fine gold. Dr. Frederick Henry Rose (January 5, 1833 to March 31, 1873) was an assistant surgeon in the Royal Navy stationed in Jamaica in early 1858 when the United States side-wheel steamer frigate Susquehanna pulled into the harbor at Port Royal, crippled by an outbreak of yellow fever that ravaged its crew. Dr. Rose gallantly volunteered to board the ship and care for the sick, which he did until the Susquehanna arrived for quarantine in New York on April 15, 1858. By that time the crew had experienced 155 cases of yellow fever, including 17 deaths.

The obverse is inscribed PRESENTED / TO / ASST SURGN FREDERIC H. ROSE, R.N. / BY THE REMNANT OF THE CREW OF THE / UNITED STATES STEAM FRIGATE SUSQUEHANNA. / WHO RETURNED TO THE UNITED STATES IN SAID SHIP / IN GOOD HEALTH, / AS A MARK OF THEIR APPRECIATION OF HIS GENEROUSLY / VOLUNTEERED PROFESSIONAL SERVICES / RENDERED THEIR SHIPMATES WHO WERE / AFFLICTED WITH YELLOW FEVER / APRIL 1858. The reverse, as described by the New York Times, features "a representation of the frigate Susquehanna at sea, with a circular border representing a cable, which is seen on both sides. The medal is beautiful in design, and most elaborate in execution, the whole being handsomely engraved. The weight of the medal is a little over five ounces."

Documentation from Alan Weinberg suggests this medal "remained in the possession of Surgeon Rose and his descendants" until 1959, when it was sold in London. It subsequently appeared in a Plaza Art Galleries Auction, where it was purchased by a New York City antique dealer, and then obtained by Joe Liptak of Teaneck, New Jersey about 1967-68 in partnership with Charles McSorley. McSorley later resold it to Alan Weinberg in 1974 for $5,000. See E-Sylum Volume 14, Number 30 (July 24, 2011) for more on the colorful story behind that sale.

To read the complete lot description, see:
1858 Dr. Frederick H. Rose -- United States Steam Frigate Susquehanna Lifesaving Gold Medal. Uncertified.... (https://coins.ha.com/itm/military-medals/1858-dr-frederick-h-rose-united-states-steam-frigate-susquehanna-lifesaving-gold-medal/a/1341-4805.s)

  Dr. Frederick Rose Congressional Gold Medal obverse Dr. Frederick Rose Congressional Gold Medal reverse

(1861) Congressional Gold Medal to Dr. Frederick H. Rose
Unique in Gold, Julian-PE-29, Loubat-69
First Non-U.S. Military Recipient

(1861) Dr. Frederick Rose Congressional Gold Medal. Julian PE-29, Loubat-69. Uncertified. 76mm. 380.50 grams. Struck in .900 gold. A devastating outbreak of yellow fever on board the United States side-wheel steamer frigate S.S. Susquehanna prompted ship Captain Joshua R. Sands to dock at Port Royal (Kingston), Jamaica at about 8pm on the evening of April 5, 1858. British Admiral Sir Hewston Stewart, who was stationed at Port Royal, placed his Navy hospital at the disposal of the crew. In total, 85 crewmembers were taken in, where they stayed until they recovered. In the meantime, Stewart further approved the request of Royal Navy Assistant-Surgeon Dr. Frederick Henry Rose (born January 5, 1833; died March 31, 1873) to volunteer to board the Susquehanna. Rose had offered to care for its outpatient crewmembers during the ship's voyage back to the United States. Dr. Rose remained with the crew as they sailed from Jamaica to New York harbor, where the ship was detained in quarantine for 30 days after its arrival on April 15. In all, the ship experienced 155 cases of yellow fever and 17 deaths.

For his extraordinary courage and service, the crew of the Susquehanna presented Dr. Rose with a gold medal on May 6, 1858. It was engraved by Tiffany & Co. of New York City, with an ornate depiction of the Susquehanna at sea on one side, a personalized inscription on the other, and a roped border around. Miraculously, the Tiffany gold medal still survives as is also offered in the current auction as part of the Alan Weinberg Collection.

The first Congressional gold medal was awarded to none other than George Washington, commander of the Continental Army, after the passage of a Congressional resolution on March 25, 1776 (it took another 14 years before Washington received his gold medal). The next 29 Congressional gold medals awarded from 1777 to 1854 were all presented to United States military members, the likes of whom included Revolutionary War heroes and future presidents.

That tradition was broken on May 11, 1858, when Congress approved the presentation of a gold medal to Dr. Frederick Rose, the first non-U.S. military member awarded the United States' most distinguished recognition of public gratitude.

To read the complete lot description, see:
(1861) Dr. Frederick Rose Congressional Gold Medal. Julian PE-29, Loubat-69. Uncertified.... (https://coins.ha.com/itm/u.s.-mint-medals/tokens-and-medals/-1861-dr-frederick-rose-congressional-gold-medal-julian-pe-29-loubat-69-uncertified/a/1341-4803.s)

To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
MORE ON CHARLES MCSORLEY (https://www.coinbooks.org/esylum_v14n30a06.html)

Schmidt E-Sylum ad 2017-06-18


Wayne Homren, Editor

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