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Knowledge Is Power: Moritz Furst's ca. 1835 Mechanics Institute of New York Medal

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Knowledge Is Power: Moritz Furst's ca. 1835 Mechanics Institute of New York Medal

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Details

1839 New York Mechanics Institute medal by Moritz Furst. Silver, 51 mm. Harkness NY-370, Neuzil (Moritz Furst's American Medals, ANS COAC 1997) 58. Extremely Fine. A good deal of reflectivity remains on the obverse, less on the reverse. Only lightly toned, with hairlines on both sides suggesting this was polished long ago by its non-numismatic recipient, but still retaining a fair share of original surface. Some scattered marks, a few abrasions on reverse, rim nick over C of MECHANICS. The design is very sharp and boldly detailed, showing the intricate design and accomplished engraving of Furst in the obverse allegorical scene. The reverse is engraved to J.R. Hoole for an excellent lathe, Sep. 1839. Mr. Hoole's award was announced in print in the 1840 edition of the Mechanics Institute's journal The American Repertory of Arts, Sciences, and Manufactures. The Repertory noted that there were 41 silver medals given out this year by the Mechanics Institute.

This medal appears to have been given out for just a few years. Every one I've encountered in hand or in print has been dated between 1835 and 1839. Assuming the mintage figures were similar for all five years, that places a total mintage around 200 pieces. Only about half of those known use this interesting "Knowledge Is Power" reverse; the other reverse, illustrated in Neuzil, has no reverse legend but shows a similar wreath with post-mintage award engraving. This large, early medal was engraved by one of the most notable medalists of his day, the man responsible for most of the War of 1812 naval and military medals struck at the US Mint. The only other example of this medal to sell at auction in recent memory brought $3500 hammer in the January 2005 Stack's Americana sale. That price realized admittedly had more to do with the subject matter (fire engines) than the rarity of this medal as a type, but this medal remains an underappreciated issue of the great Moritz Furst.

Additional Information

Grading Service RAW
Grade RAW
Designation N/A
Mint Location Philadelphia
Strike Type Business
Circulated/Uncirc Uncirculated
Grade Add On N/A
SKU or Cert # 15001

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Description

Details

1839 New York Mechanics Institute medal by Moritz Furst. Silver, 51 mm. Harkness NY-370, Neuzil (Moritz Furst's American Medals, ANS COAC 1997) 58. Extremely Fine. A good deal of reflectivity remains on the obverse, less on the reverse. Only lightly toned, with hairlines on both sides suggesting this was polished long ago by its non-numismatic recipient, but still retaining a fair share of original surface. Some scattered marks, a few abrasions on reverse, rim nick over C of MECHANICS. The design is very sharp and boldly detailed, showing the intricate design and accomplished engraving of Furst in the obverse allegorical scene. The reverse is engraved to J.R. Hoole for an excellent lathe, Sep. 1839. Mr. Hoole's award was announced in print in the 1840 edition of the Mechanics Institute's journal The American Repertory of Arts, Sciences, and Manufactures. The Repertory noted that there were 41 silver medals given out this year by the Mechanics Institute.

This medal appears to have been given out for just a few years. Every one I've encountered in hand or in print has been dated between 1835 and 1839. Assuming the mintage figures were similar for all five years, that places a total mintage around 200 pieces. Only about half of those known use this interesting "Knowledge Is Power" reverse; the other reverse, illustrated in Neuzil, has no reverse legend but shows a similar wreath with post-mintage award engraving. This large, early medal was engraved by one of the most notable medalists of his day, the man responsible for most of the War of 1812 naval and military medals struck at the US Mint. The only other example of this medal to sell at auction in recent memory brought $3500 hammer in the January 2005 Stack's Americana sale. That price realized admittedly had more to do with the subject matter (fire engines) than the rarity of this medal as a type, but this medal remains an underappreciated issue of the great Moritz Furst.

Additional

Additional Information

Grading Service RAW
Grade RAW
Designation N/A
Mint Location Philadelphia
Strike Type Business
Circulated/Uncirc Uncirculated
Grade Add On N/A
SKU or Cert # 15001

Related Blog Article(s)

Listed below are blog articles related to this product listing, if applicable:

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John Kraljevich Americana