Discovery of a third Emancipator of America medal featuring a portrait of George Washington and produced some time around 1801 was announced by Heritage of Dallas, Texas.
The bronze piece, which is described as being the best of the three and is graded AU-53 by Numismatic Guaranty Corp., will be sold by the firm at a special token and medal auction Sept. 28-29 in conjunction with the Long Beach Coin, Stamp and Collectibles Expo.
?Heritage is especially excited about this important discovery,? said Heritage President Greg Rohan.
?The 1801 Emancipator of America medal, Baker-83, is rarity-ranked as a low R.8. For decades, numismatic researchers have known of only two examples of the medal, which was struck circa 1801. The first of those resides permanently in the collection of the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the second was sold in 2004 in the John J. Ford Jr. sale,? Rohan explained.
?This previously unreported third piece was purchased through a private transaction with a numismatic firm in London, and has been impounded in the same collection since 1957. Once the Ford example was sold, collectors had virtually no hopes of obtaining one,? Rohan said.
Russell Rulau and George Fuld described this issue in their 1999 book, Medallic Portraits of Washington. Their illustration is the holed and gilt example from the John J. Ford Collection, which realized $11,500 when it sold in 2004.
The obverse features a right-facing bust of George Washington, while on the reverse the Angel of Fame blowing her trumpet flies above an olive and oak wreath containing EMANCIPATOR OF AMERICA.
?The bronze example Heritage will be offering,? concluded Rohan, ?is the nicest available, and is likely the finest known.?
The medal has a plain edge and is 44 millimeters in diameter.
It is described by the cataloger as having attractive surfaces with exceptional dark-chocolate-brown coloration.
The token sale is part of Heritage?s 61st official September Long Beach Signature Aucton.