USA MISSOURI Louisiana Purchase Expo medal 1904


UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, MISSOURI, medal, 1904, Philadelphia mint, Obverse: 2 busts L, LOUISIANA PURCHASE EXPOSITION OFFICIAL SOUVENIR, Reverse: map, LOUISIANA TERRITORY 1803 1,000,000 SQUARE MILES $15,000,000. ST. LOUIS 1904, gold plated bronze, 35mm, there is a flaw on the reverse by the west coast that looks like the gilding is cracked and peeling, never seen something like that before, AU

1 in stock

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Medals were a big deal in the late 19th century. If you put out a medal for your prestigious event, it was usually a good bet that you could sell them out. That market dynamic went on for a number of decades. You took them out of the drawer and showed them to your visitors: “I was there, and I got this.” Then came movies and then TV, and who wanted to look at things that didn’t move any more?0″

There are two kinds of things that are called “medals.” One is things that look like coins but don’t express a value. Sometimes those medals are considerably larger than most coins. The other kind of medal is a metal thing designed to be displayed on one’s chest, often a reward for something, often in a military context. If the medal is small enough it is sometimes called a “medallet.”

The word “exonumia” is used to describe all kinds of things that are “like” coins but are not coins. I wrote a blog post on that subject. Basic categories: 1. used like a coin but not issued by a national government, 2. looks like a coin but not made for spending, 3. other things that we are interested in.