Login

Mr_Norris_LKNS's Blog

28 Sep 2020

US Mint CGM Replica Prices Quadruple

Medals | Mr_Norris_LKNS

I enjoy history, particularly WW2 history. I am not a frequent shopper of United States Mint products... not that I find anything wrong with them, but I've never been a mint set subscriber or anything. I'd more likely buy a numismatic item I wanted at a coin shop or coin show. But I have seen some of the Mint's commemorative medals, and some of them I like; especially some of the WW2 related ones, and a few Presidential ones. When I read the news from Coin World Magazine that there was a tremendous price hike in the works, I thought I'd better investigate.The United States Mint creates the Congressional Gold Medals as they become authorized by Congress. Typically these recognize an individual or a group, and the reason or occasion for Congress awarding them the medal. Medals have been awarded to military personnel (not to be confused with the Medal of Honor and other medals for valor), pioneers in medicine, science, aviation and space exploration, humanitarians, even entertainers and athletes. US citizenship is not a requirement for recipients, you just have to be appreciated for some notable reason by the US Congress. The Congressional Gold Medal has about the same level of prestige as the Presidential Medal of Freedom; however, far fewer CGM's have been awarded in spite of having been authorized for much longer. The PMF has been awarded to over 500 recipients since its inception in 1963 during President Kennedy's term (with 102 awarded by President Reagan and 123 by President Obama). By comparison, the CGM has only been awarded 163 times (as of April 2019) even though it has been around nearly 200 years longer, since the Second Continental Congress authorized it and first awarded it in 1776 to then-General George Washington! It must take a great deal more cooperation to get two-thirds of Congress and their respective committees to agree on granting such an award, than for the President to decide you deserve recognition. The CGM is not the kind of medal you wear around your neck or pinned to your jacket; it's more of a trophy type medal that you would display on your desk or in a prominent display case.I can't confirm it but I've heard that the Mint uses the sales of CGM replicas made in silver and bronze to fund the production of gold medals. That is what you are getting when you buy the 1-5/16" or 3" bronze or silver medals from the US Mint. Congress does occasionally authorize actual Congressional Silver Medals and Congressional Bronze Medals to be awarded to individuals or groups. Congressional Silver and Bronze Medals are rare, and are not the same thing as the replica CGMs made in silver or bronze that you can buy from the Mint. Typically the Congressional Silver and Bronze Medals are awarded as part of an award of a Congressional Gold Medal, whereas the main person leading a group effort might get the gold, his chief assistants or officers would get the silver, and the rest of the crew would get the bronze. This recognizes everyone's participation in the event commemorated at different levels of responsibility, activity, etc.; not to mention awarding gold medals to every individual in a large crew would be very expensive. Everyone who receives a silver or bronze Congressional Medal still played a part in Congress's recognition that the event deserved commemorating by awarding the CGM., and their silver or bronze medal is proof of that.As of this writing, 1-5/16" bronze CGM replicas are being sold for $6.95 plus shipping, and 3" replicas are being sold for $39.95 plus shipping. $40+ for a bronze replica isn't hateful if you really like the topic, and $7+ for a smaller replica would make collecting them an affordable hobby. Of the two, of course, the larger one is what I'd want. I was hesitant to order, though, at that price, simply because it wasn't as high a priority as some other things. Then Coin World Magazine announced in a Facebook post that the price of the 3" medals was going up.A lot.Afte r January 1, 2021, the price of the 3" CGM replicas in bronze are supposedly going from $39.95 to $160.What?! Whoa!!Supposedly the Mint loses money on these things; and that's driving the price increase. So now I wonder, how much have they been losing, and for how long?? because that's a pretty steep price hike.So I finally jumped and ordered my favorite WW2 design, just in case the price hike story is really true (and if Coin World reports it, I have no reason to doubt them).My favorite of the ones they have available is the Doolittle Raiders CGM replica. First reason is, it's WW2 history and I am fascinated with the story. Second reason, I live within driving distance of the original Wright Field (now Wright Patterson AFB) where Jimmy Doolittle spent some time before his famous raid (you can see photos of him with a Wright Field patch on his flight jacket); Dayton was also the hometown of his co-pilot, Dick Cole. Thirdly, my son and I have actually attended Doolittle Raider events at the National Museum of the US Air Force there, with Mr. Cole present. If you haven't seen a flight of 17-odd B-25's flying in formation and heard the collective rumble of their twin radial engines in flight, you've missed out.So the Doolittle Raider CGM replica is a natural selection for me, and someday my son will probably have it. If for some reason he doesn't want it, the price jacking happening this January will make $40 look like a bargain, and there shouldn't be any trouble selling it. Unless, of course, the price hike has the unintentional consequence of killing the CGM replica sales program and none sell for $160. I guess then, if Congress wants to issue a gold medal, we'll just pay for it in our taxes instead of by adding to our collections.Maybe I can convince somebody to buy me my favorite Presidential 3" medals before Christmas. :-)

READ MORE
04 Sep 2020

After Action Report: the "Better Late Than Never" LKNS Auction

Club Exchange | Mr_Norris_LKNS

On Monday, August 31, the Legacy Knights Numismatic Society held its annual Student Members Only Year End Auction for our 2019-2020 school year members.Normally the auction would have happened in May towards the end of the school year, after the students had earned a school-year's worth of Knights Payment Certificates, or KPC, for their participation, to use for bidding in the auction. However, the pandemic threw a wrench in that when the school closed its doors for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year. Fortunately I was able to stay in touch with our members and parents through email, Facebook, the school e-newsletter, telephone, and the US Postal Service. Our student members were given a summer extension to complete projects normally due in May, which allowed several to earn LKNS medals as well as additional KPC for the auction. Activities were logged and KPC awarded, and auction items were catalogued so the students could plan their bidding.

READ MORE
We use cookies to provide users the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your cookie settings, we'll assume that you agree to receive all cookies on money.org. You may disable cookies at any time using your internet browser configuration. By continuing to use this website, you agree to our privacy policy and terms of use. To learn more about how we use cookies and to review our privacy policy, click here.