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Assistance with medal - Variant of H-30-280 ? (LARGE IMAGES)

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I'm looking for any information related to this medal which I recently acquired.


At first glance, I thought it was a variant of the 1904 "America Welcomes The World" medal from the St. Louis World's Fair, listed as H-30-280 in the Hendershott reference. It has the same obverse (but in very sharp relief), however, the reverse is completely different. There is not text, and it only shows a wreath design. Overall, the strike is very sharp, with a mirror-like surface to the fields. The images, captured with my iPhone don't do it justice. I'd be tempted to refer to it as a proof-type strike with almost a cameo appearance.


With the medal in hand, I noticed that it has a Paris mint edge marking of a bee, and the work Cuivre (copper) stamped into the edge. What's confusing me is that the bee edge marking was used between ~1860 - 1880. In other words, well before the 1904 World's Fair.


Could this have been some type of early strike of this medal by the designer (DePaulis)? Does anyone know of a reference to his works which might shed some light on when this design was originally created, and what it was intended for?


Any help would be greatly appreciated!








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