Medal of Benjamin Pike Jr

Benjamin Pike Jr. (1809–1864), an instrument maker and dealer who had recently opened a shop at 294 Broadway, won this silver medal at the American Institute Fair held in New York City in 1844. The obverse is marked "Awarded to Benjamin Pike, Jr. For Superior Air Pumps. 1844." The reverse is marked "AMERICAN INSTITUTE, NEW YORK. R. LOVETT." Pike knew his market well. Americans at that time were establishing numerous schools and colleges and equipping them with instruments for scientific demonstrations. In his Illustrated Descriptive Catalogue of Optical, Mathematical and Philosophical Instruments (1848), designed to attract customers around the country, Pike offered seven different air pumps and many devices to use with them.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Date made
Pike, Jr., Benjamin
Physical Description
silver (overall material)
overall: 2 in; 5.08 cm
Place Made
United States: New York
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Coins, Currency and Medals
American Institute Fair of 1844
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Additional Media

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