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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 35, August 27, 2006, Article 19

CAPE COD MEDAL NOT RARE

Dick Johnson writes: "Our editor asked last week if any reader was
familiar with the Cape Cod Canal Opening Medal of 1914.  I have
record of six auction sales, two by me and four by Joseph Levine in
his Presidential Coin & Antique auctions. That makes at least eight
people who are familiar with the medal.

It is not "rare" as mentioned in the Cape Cod Times article. "Scarce"
maybe, but not rare. In my research of this medal I learned it was
designed by a factory artist employed by Reed & Barton, the maker.
The designer was Otto E. Uhlman. Unfortunately I was unable to learn
his vita – I would love to learn his dates of birth and death (for
my artist's directory). Perhaps a reader can help.

He worked for Reed and Barton for at least the eight years prior to
issuance of this medal, then retired or left the company. He moved
away from Massachusetts - one source said he relocated to Grand Rapids,
Michigan. But I was unable to locate him there. The trail ran cold. It
was the only medal I have record of by this artist. In the big scheme
of things, he is not that important, but tracking him down makes
researching medallic artists fun.

As for the medal, it is Storer 972 in his Medals of Massachusetts.
The American Numismatic Society has it in their collection (accession
number 1914.157.1). It is in the catalog of the John Marqusee collection
(number 386), donated to the Johnson Art Gallery at Cornell University.
It was illustrated in The Numismatist when it was issued (October 1914,
p 518); also illustrated in the TAMS Journal (May-August 1962, p 79).

The last auction sale in the numismatic field (eschewing eBay) was by
Joe Levine, who sold a bronze specimen for $46, June 2001 (#69, lot
1714). He stated 25 were struck in silver – now that’s a rare medal!

Last week's news article stated the buyer paid $967 for this bronze
medal and would have gone to $1600. I’ll leave for others to comment
on this foolish bid. (But this does point out the disservice eBay is
doing – making a venue for unknowing buyers and sellers!)"

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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