Published: November 17, 2020
SANTA ANA, CALIF. – Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ November 11-13 sale featured the Larry Ness collection of Indian peace medals, a collection of 36 silver medals awarded to Native Americans, along with extensive offerings of bronze issues, including the rare ovals from the later series, as well as representative collections of French, Canadian and, most notably, British medals. Beyond collectors of coins and medals, these medals are little known, but they served as important markers of diplomacy between the various Euro-American governments and the Native American nations encountered during the Westward Expansion. Many people have seen them in period photographs, worn about the necks of various chiefs who sat for the cameras of early photographers, but without realization of what they were or that they were official government medals and much more than simple adornments.
Leading the charge at $55,000 was a first size 1865 Andrew Johnson medal with provenance to the original recipient and a distinctive official engraving. The medal was prized by its recipient and passed down with care. Carefully inscribed on the upper reverse is “Brother, I Am Pleased With You!”
A more extensive recap of this sale will follow.
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