The art of the medal was explored in a fascinating way during the first quarter of the 20th century. Most of them were produced for purely artistic reasons while others were released as popular award medals during international expositions.
Three exceptional examples were recently offered at recent auctions highlighting the beauty of these functional medals. A 1901 Pan-American Exposition Medal, graded Choice About Uncirculated was sold for $2,115 by Stack’s Bowers Galleries at Baltimore auction in March 2017.
Hermon Atkins MacNeil designed a stunning award medal for the 1901 Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York before designing the Standing Liberty quarter dollar in 1916. MacNeil was popular for his Native American themes. The obverse of this medal features a nude Liberty walking with an American bison. The reverse features two Native Americans, the left one representing South America and the right one representing North America, holding a peace pipe together.
American photographer Arthur Hewett got his silver medal as an award. He was the official photographer of the exhibition and his name is inscribed on the obverse. Gorham Manufacturing Company of Boston produced the medal.