Numismatics of Massachusetts by Malcolm Storer
Other | Humanities
Numismatics of Massachusetts
Quarterman Pubns (June 1, 1981)
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While this list of the medals of Massachusetts is of necessity far from complete, it represents what is, as far as I know, the first attempt to collate them that has been made. Primarily it is a catalogue of the pieces in the collection of the Massachusetts Historical Society, although I have included descriptions of other pieces, taken from many sources. These descriptions of pieces not in the collection are, of course, in many cases incomplete and incorrect. In old catalogues I have sometimes found what was probably the same piece described in half a dozen different ways.
It will be noted that I have made no attempt to subdivide the pieces into storecards, hard-times tokens, medals, etc., as do most numismatists, which only leads to endless confusion; but have grouped everything, except the personal medals, under the respective towns or cities, in the first place alphabetically and then, in the case of the dated pieces, chronologically. This system seems to be more suitable to a catalogue not compiled primarily for experts. A full index will guide those who consult the list.
A few words about the collection of the Society may be of interest. Since its foundation medals have been presented to it from time to time, but in 1905 William Sumner Appleton left it his remarkable collection of Americana, numbering 3456 pieces, among them a very large number of excessively rare specimens. The Appleton collection is especially rich in medals of Washington, Franklin, Lafayette, and colonial medals. Mr. Appleton's activity in numismatics is attested by the many valuable papers he read before the Society on the subject.
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