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Civilian Long Service Medals


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Greetings, I am new here and was wondering if anyone here collects civilian long service medals like the ones I will illustrate here. This is just one of many off the beaten track collecting areas I enjoy. Thanks, Fred

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They're interesting. I've never even thought about collecting something like that. Have a friend who collects ANA Membership Medals, especially the things like 25 years of membership.

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They're interesting. I've never even thought about collecting something like that. Have a friend who collects ANA Membership Medals, especially the things like 25 years of membership.

Yes I got mine years ago. ANA is one of the few oranizations that appreciates it's membership enough to give out such awards without charging for them. My father-in-law also has his 40, 50 and 60 year awards.

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Interesting topic. Why don't you start an exonumia thread and shre your collection. I know I'd be interested in seeing the pieces.

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Interesting topic. Why don't you start an exonumia thread and shre your collection. I know I'd be interested in seeing the pieces.

That is an interesting idea Bill! The more I think about it the better I like it. i'll start feeding in the medals slowly and we will see how much interest it generates. Thanks, Fred

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As suggested by Bill I will start sharing my collecting interest in civilian issue long servic medals with the key medal in my collection. These medals represent a time which has mostly passed and is now history. I welcome input so don't hesitate if you have questions or a medal you may be proud enough of to share. The medal illustrated below is what I call the Shaw medal. It is unique as far as I know. It was specially made for presentation to James D. Shaw who was the lawyer and eventually the General Counsel and a director of the Wisconsin Electric Power Co. and it' susidiaries. When he started representing them the company was known as The Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Company. An article about this medal was published in the Fall 2009 issue of The Centinal official publication of the Central States Numismatic Society. The medal is 14k gold, 30.8 mm wide and 44 mm tall. Around the rim are 34 small diamonds and what I think is a ruby at the top. Below I will attach some scans which should be worth several thousand of my words. From here on I will list more down to earth collectible medals.

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United States Steel Corporation long service medals are the most commonly encountered long service medals, to assemble a complete set on these medals however would be a life time challenge. The medals were designed by Julio Kilenyi. All the medals feature a portrait of Elbert Henry Gary on the obverse and an old steam locomotive with workers on the reverse. The medals were first issued in 1926 on the company's 25th anniversary and were awarded retroactively. For example in 1926 50 year medals were awarded to employees who already had 25 years of service to Republic Steel at the time it merged into the new U.S. Steel Corp.

The medals were issued in 5 year increments from 10 years to 50 years of service. The 10 to 20 year medals are bronze. The 25 year to 45 year medals are sterling (.925 fine) silver and the 50 year medals are 14k gold.

The medals exist in three different loop forms; a flat fob type loop for wear on a leather strap, a round loop for wear on a cloth ribbon type fob and no loop for wear in a bezel.

Makers: the 10 through 45 year medals were made by Whitehead & Hoag until 1959 when Bastian Brothers bought out W&H. Bastian Brothers used the W&H dies until 1965 when they made their own dies. The gold 50 year medals were also made these two makers plus a third, the L G Balfour company.

Naming: there are four major naming varieties for all the medals. No name which could mean that the medal was not issued. Initials usually 2 or 3. Curved name. Straight name.

All this means that a complete set would be a minimum 55 medals and if you include the naming varieties 220 medals.

Errors and anomalies: as with any large issue over a long period of time some interesting things can happen. I have or have seen: wrong metal strikes, wrong die usage, a die trial and incuse portions of the legend or inscription that should have been in raised lettering.

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The Illinois Central Rail Road: 50 Years of service earned a 14k Gold life time pass in 1935!

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I've read about gold passes. I've never actually seen one. Cool.

Thanks Bill, this looks like it could be a pass to me but I am not 100% sure since it does not say so any where on this item. It is not listed in the Knous book on rail road collectibles. I did offer them free scans of this award which they declined so I guess they are not planing a second edition. Too bad since it is an interesting book. There is also an internet site for rail road collectors which does feature some of my rail road long service medals http://railroadiana.org/ and a lot more. Check it out.

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A Monsieur Arene received this award from a French "assurance" company.

 

 

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Nice! Is that from a French insurance company? Here in the USA I think the largest number of long service medal types were issued by insurance companies

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I love that eagle!

It still looks very Napoleonic perched on the exploding cigar. As near as I can translate the legend this medal is to a special agent of The Eagle insurance company. Can't read the last word or it does not appear in my Fr.-Eng. dictionary as I read it.

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Gold and Silver are not the only metals used in long service medals. Here is one from the Addressograph-Multigraph company that just about knocked my socks off when I first saw it. It is a hefty bronze medal 101.2mm in diameter and features what looks like a knight wearing only light armor.

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Royal Canadian Mint 15 year service medal. Since we are all numismatists here I think this one should have a special interest for us. The medal is 59.9mm bronze. My guess is that the medal is a retirement or fare well gift rather than a regular anniversary medal. The reverse is plain with the inscribed recipient's name and years of service.

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The eagle is from a French insurance company medal.

 

Long and faithful service with the London Zoological Society could

earn this substantial (77mm) medal (BHM 1272).

 

 

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Well worth the service. Beautiful medal.

Yes but I hope it has some kind of edge inscription saying who got it and what for.

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Long ago in the BC era (before computors) offices were filled with the sound of typing and it was a very invigorating sound. Everyone had a typewriter on their desks and one of the many top brands was the Smith-Corona. They built a large plain dependable machine so it comes with no surprise that their 25 year service medal is also a large bronze and fairly plain looking medal. Take a look;

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Long ago in BC era (before computors) offices were filled with the sound of typing and it was a very invigorating sound. Everyone had a typewriter on their desks and one of the many top brands was the Smith-Corona. They built a large plain dependable machine so it comes with no surprise that their 25 year service medal is also a large bronze and fairly plain looking medal. Take a look;

 

And here is the reverse:

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