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Mellon, Carnegie make ANA medal

Two philanthropists largely responsible for the growth and identity of the city of Pittsburgh will be featured on the official medal for the American Numismatic Association’s inaugural fall National Money Show.

Andrew Carnegie, a businessman who revolutionized the steel industry and made Pittsburgh the “Steel City,” and Andrew Mellon, a former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury and a pioneer in the aluminum industry, will be featured on the medal’s obverse. The reverse depicts a foundry ladle pouring molten steel, an image that not only ties itself to Carnegie but to the city’s overall identity.

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Jamie Franki, an art professor at the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, is the first artist to bring these two men together on one medal. The portraits are derived from multiple photographs and paintings and include the signatures of both men.

As industrial businessmen they amassed great fortunes, but these benefactors are more widely remembered for the money they gave away. Carnegie and Mellon supported culture, education, science, medicine and the arts. Foundations and institutions bearing their names carry on their philanthropic visions.

Franki, a former master designer in the U.S. Mint’s Artistic Infusion Program, was commissioned by the Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists to design and sculpt the official 2011 ANA Pittsburgh National Money Show medal.

In 2005, Franki’s American Bison nickel reverse design was selected for a six-month minting and received the “Coin of the Year” award for Most Popular Coin by World Coin News magazine, sister publication of Numismatic News. Since 2006, his Jefferson 1800 nickel obverse design has been featured on the forward-facing circulating coin. Franki designed medals for the 2007 ANA National Money Show and the 2008, 2010 and 2011 ANA World’s Fairs of Money. He also designed the perpetual medal of honor for Team USA Olympic Coaches, the Order of Ikkos medal.

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Pittsburgh National Money Show medals were available for purchase at the show, which ran Oct. 13-15, but they can still be ordered by contacting Tom Uram with the Pennsylvania Association of Numismatists at (412) 418-0783. Cost for the two-medal set, silver and bronze, is $160. The 2-3/4-inch bronze medal is $65.

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