Firefighter's Medal with Case

Firefighter's Medal with Case

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A blank version of the James Gordon Bennett Medal in a leather case originally presented to a deserving firefighter of the city of New York through the Board of Trustees - T. Bailey Mason and others. The obverse of medal shows Neptune coming out of the sea on a shell, pulled by a horse, handing a key to a female figure (possibly Fame) holding a speaking trumpet and standing on a cliff edge. Her feet are surrounded by a fire hose, a bucket, a hook, and a ladder. With her left hand, which holds the trumpet, she gestures toward a steam engine pulled by horses in the far right background. Steam and/or smoke borders the right edge of the medal. A winged figure representing Fire, who holds a torch in each hand, is vanquished at the bottom below the cliffs.
The reverse of the medal is inscribed on the outer border: "ENDOWED BY A FUND CONTRIBUTED BY JAMES GORDON BENNETT." Inside this inscription is a wreath of leaves, with a crossed axe and trumpet with ribbon at the bottom. Inside is the inscription: "PRESENTED / to / [blank space] / IN APPRECIATION OF / MERITOUS PERFORMANCE / OF DUTY AS A FIREMAN / [blank space] / TRUSTEES" There are two spaces left blank for further engraving of the name of the individual to whom this medal would be presented.
The medal is in original case, made of leather and lined with green velvet. The exterior of the case is brown, and inscribed in the top in gold lettering is: "T. Bailey Meyrs. / Trustee of the Bennett Medal" A decorative gold medal band is painted around the exterior of the box.
Currently not on view (case)
Object Name
date made
ca 1866
Tiffany & Co.
place made
United States: New York, New York City
Physical Description
velvet (part: case material)
leather (part: case material)
cardboard (part: case material)
bronze (part: medal material)
part: case: 3 in x 3 in x 1/2 in; 7.62 cm x 7.62 cm x 1.27 cm
part: medal: 1 1/2 in; x 3.81 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Estate of Cassie Mason Myers Julian-James
Fire Fighting
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Fire Fighting and Law Enforcement
Always Ready: Fighting Fire in the 19th Century
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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