Historical and Commemorative Medals
Collection of Benjamin Weiss

  THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION: BENJAMIN FRANKLIN    (SANSOM MEDAL)

REICH, John (Jacob): USA, 1776, Bronze, 41 mm
Obv: Bust of Benjamin Franklin    LIGHTNING AVERTED TYRANNY REPELL'D
Rev: American beaver gnawing at trunk of British oak
Exergue:  1776
Signed:
R under truncation
Ref: Betts 246/546; Julian 232/CM-8
;  Weiss BW188

This medal, commemorating the American Revolution, was executed by John Reich at the request of Philadelphia merchant Joseph Sansom. Although the medal is dated 1776, it was struck at the United States Mint in the early 1800s. The device of the beaver (which symbolized the perseverance and industriousness of America), gnawing the oak tree (the emblem of Great Britain), was used on the Continental money. Sansom described the reverse of this medal as follows: "The American Beaver nibbling at the Overshadowing Oak of the British Power on the Western Continent. Dateľ1776".
This medal apparently is a mule as the reverse was also paired with jugate busts of Franklin and Washington (Betts 248/549).

LINK to the American Revolution (from The History Place)

LINK to Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (from earlyamerica.com)

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