Dick Johnson submitted this great background information on medal maker Green Duck Corporation. Thanks!
The query in last week's E-Sylum about a GDC mintmark was answered correctly by editor Wayne Homren. But there is more to the story.
The company with the funny name was founded in 1906 by two Chicago men. One was George G. Greenburg (formerly with Chicago diesinking firm Childs & Company). The other was Harvey Ducgheisel (probably of German nationality). For their new firm they chose the name "Greenduck" as how the first syllable of each of their last names were spoken. They had intended the name to be one word but so many people used it as two words that the company itself adopted that form, ultimately to become Green Duck Metal Stamping Company.
And metal stamping they did. Their products list was boundless, including many of numismatic interest. They made the American Numismatic Association's convention badge for the Cleveland ANA Convention in 1954 and the Chicago ANA Convention of 1955. They struck campaign medals, lots of tokens, medals, badges, so-called dollars, and watchfobs -- right from the very start -- adding Mardi Gras doubloons and casino chips in their later years.
But their specialty was pinback buttons among a wide assortment of products, often lithographed in color. These included buttons, tabs, label buttons, book marks, small advertising signs, crickets, key tags, fare tokens, arcade tokens, on and on. In fact a 1930s advertisement listed 48 such products. Early on they even struck Illinois state license plates, and, souvenir spoons for the 1934 Chicago World's Fair.
The company changed ownership and moved from Chicago to Hernando, Mississippi in 1962. It was here they struck Mardi Gras doubloons and, in 1983, their first casino chip. The firm changed ownership again but could not sustain operations and went out of business in 2004.
Green Duck items are well known to collectors, particularly to the customers of Hakes Americana & Collectibles which frequently offers Green Duck buttons as collectors' items. The firm, headed by Ted Hake, featured the company's button archives -- consigned by a Chicago collector -- in a January 19-20, 2010 auction sale.
For collectors of numismatic items I have attempted to list all those diestruck items made by the firm for my databank on American artists, engravers, diesinkers and medallists. The entry on Green Duck occupies six pages.
Dick is offering this 6-page list of Green Duck numismatic items sent by email for anyone who is interested, particularly for those who have a number of Green Duck medals on hand and could possibly add to his list. Email a request to firstname.lastname@example.org
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
QUERY: GDC CASINO TOKEN MINT MARK
Wayne Homren, Editor
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