For What It’s Worth – April/May/June 2020

On the first of July in 1927 Canada celebrated Dominion Day, as it was known then, and also its Sixtieth or Diamond Jubilee. It was a huge nationwide celebration to recognize sixty years of Confederation. Ten years earlier, in 1917, Canada and many of the countries around the globe were mired in World War I so celebration of our fiftieth anniversary went by with little fanfare which made this Jubilee such a great celebration of Canada. The Canadian government commissioned a few medals to recognize the country’s sixtieth Jubilee and a gold example of one, courtesy of in Ottawa, is pictured here.

A smaller bronze medal of similar design was produced in large numbers to be distributed to schoolchildren who participated in celebration events across the country. They were originally handed out in small envelopes and examples of these will sell for a few dollars for an average medal to perhaps $20 for a nice original piece with its envelope. The example pictured is a 22 karat gold medal, 36 millimetres in diameter and weighs over 46 grams. It features jugate portraits of King George V and Queen Mary with CONFEDERATION above and CANADA below, with the dates 1867 to the left and 1927 to the right. The reverse shows the Canadian coat of arms with “A MARI USQUE AD MARE” (From sea to sea) on a scroll below. The medal is a superb example of great rarity! They produced this also in bronze and silver and they were presented in a light blue case with darker blue velvet interior. The mintage of the bronze medal was 1840 while 600 of the silver medals were made. The number of gold examples is unknown but certainly less than 100 and the consensus is that fewer than 20 are thought to exist and only a handful have been in auctions in the last two decades.

  Bronzes generally bring between $75 and $150 depending on the condition and the original case. A silver example would fetch $250-350 and the gold, which was recently purchased by Jacob Lipson is listed for $4500 with great photos and descriptions of the medal and case. I have just learned that it may already be sold. Stay safe and healthy and Happy Hunting.