The July - August 2013 issue of RNA News (an electronic publication of the Rochester Numismatic Association) has a nice article by Gerard Muhl on an interesting Civil War related medal. With permission, here is an excerpt.
Stonewall Jackson Medal of 1864
By Gerard Muhl, RNA President - 1979
A privately commissioned medal commemorates the Civil War actions of General Thomas Jonathon "Stonewall" Jackson.
The medal is two inches in diameter and is struck in white metal. It shows a heroic bust of Jackson facing left and the date of his birth, 1821, and the date of his death at age 39 in 1863. The 1821 birth date is wrong as he actually was born in 1824.
Jackson served with great merit in the Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862, until the time he was accidentally shot by his own troops in May 1863.
The reverse of the medal shows a corn and tobacco wreath and the battles Jackson fought. At the base of the list among the images of cannons, swords, and bayonets is a Latin inscription meaning "Claimed by God".
Charles A. Lamar commissioned the Jackson medals to be struck. Beginning in 1858 he became actively involved in the Atlantic slave trade - making trips be-tween West Africa and Jekyll Island. The U.S. and Great Britain had both outlawed the international slave trade in 1808. Lamar thus had to slip through the British Atlantic blockade to get his human cargo to America. Funds from the slave trade al-lowed Lamar's bank in Savannah to thrive. All this changed in 1862 with the outbreak of the War.
Lamar commissioned Armand Caque to design and have the Stonewall medal struck. Caque was engraver to the Emperor of France, Napoleon III.
Before seeing the medal, of which perhaps 500 were struck, Charles Lamar was killed in action in Georgia.
The medals were turned over to Lamar's widow who kept them sequestered in a Savannah cotton ware-house. There they remained for over twenty-five years when they were given to the Ladies Auxiliary of the Confederate Veterans association. They sold for one dollar each to benefit wounded veterans of the South.
It has been estimated that between 200 and 300 medals still exist though many show nicks and scratches and substantial wear from rough handling.
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