Featured Karl Goetz Medals, Post Yours

Discussion in 'World Coins' started by Chris B, Jul 23, 2018.

  1. Chris B

    Chris B Supporter! Supporter

    Part of this is a duplicate of a former post but it was suggested that I start a new post on Goetz medals. Let's see what happens and please share yours.

    My collection of world medals increased by one a few weeks ago. Karl Goetz was a controversial man due to his political beliefs but his numismatic accomplishments shouldn't be over looked. In addition to his medal output, he designed a number of German coins after WWI. Goetz191901.jpg

    This medal depicts "The Bismarck Mausoleum (Bismarck Grabhaus)", Cast Bronze Medal, 356.00g., 105mm, by Karl Goetz, 1919. As you can see it is a big medal measuring over 4" in diameter.

    Obverse: Bismarck in the heavens, defiantly clenching his fists with clouds swirling around him.

    Legend: Was ich mit Hulfe des deutschen Volkes schuf in grosser Zeit - das hat der Wahn eines einzelnen zerstort • Das deutsche Volk hat sich durtch Unterzeichnung des Friedens von Versailles selbst aus der Reihe der Grossmächte gestrichen • War es fruher gehasst.so wird es jetzt mit Recht verachtet • Es muss sich sogarselbst verachten bis diese Schmach mit dem Blute unserer Feinde abgewaschen wird?" (What I created with the help of the German people over a long period of time - which has been destroyed by the delusion of a single individual. The German people have struck themselves from the list of great powers by subscribing to the Peace of Versailles. It (Germany) was formerly hated, it is now justifiably despised. It must, therefore, despise itself so much until this disgrace will be cleansed with the blood of our enemies).

    Reverse: Bismarck's burial place in the Saxon Forest.

    Legend: "Deutschlands Ehre, Grosse und Gluck begraben im Sachsenwalde" (Germany's Honor, Greatness and Good Fortune lie buried in the Saxon Forest).

    Dated: April 1, 1899, (Kienast 230)

    Bismarck died in 1898 when the German empire he was instrumental in founding was still an ascendant power. This medal struck in the climate of despair and national shame following Germany's defeat in the Great War depicts a Bismarck angered by the failure of the German people, scolding them from the grave.

    Goetz Lusitania 04.JPG Goetz Lusitania 05.JPG

    Above is the "Sinking of the Lusitania" medal in the wrong date variety. It actually sank on the 7th. Geotz fixed this for later castings. This is a 57mm cast iron example. Kienast 156.RMS Lusitania was launched by the Cunard Line in 1906, at a time of fierce competition for the North Atlantic trade. In 1915, during the first World War, she was torpedoed by a German U-Boat off the coast of Ireland. Of the 1,962 passengers and crew aboard Lusitania at the time of the sinking, 1,191 of the people aboard the ship lost their lives on that afternoon of May 7, 1915. The sinking turned public opinion in many countries against Germany and contributed to the American entry into the War.

    Obverse: The Lusitania slipping beneath the waves stern first (opposite to what really happened) and with obvious war contraband on her deck: cannon, warplanes, armaments.

    Obverse Legend Translation: The liner Lusitania sunk by a German submarine May 5, 1915.

    Reverse: A skeleton (representing death) sells passage at the Cunard Line ticket office.

    Reverse Legend Translation: Business Above All

    Karl Goetz privately struck a run of medals as a satirical attack on the Cunard Line for trying to continue business as usual during wartime. Goetz blamed both the British government and the Cunard Line for allowing the Lusitania to sail despite the German embassy warnings that it was unsafe to do so. One side of the medal shows the gun-laden Lusitania sinking, with the motto "KEINE BANNWARE!" ("NO CONTRABAND!"), while the reverse shows a skeleton selling Cunard tickets with the motto "Geschäft Über Alles" ("Business Above All"). Goetz had put an incorrect date for the sinking on the medal: instead of 7 May he had put 5 May - two days before the actual sinking. Not realizing his error, Goetz made copies of the medal and sold them in Munich and also to some numismatic dealers with whom he conducted business. The Goetz medal attracted so much attention that the British Lord Newton, who was in charge of Propaganda at the Foreign Office in 1916, decided to develop the anti-German feelings aroused by it for propaganda purposes, and arranged for the medal to be reproduced. The so-called British replica medals were sold for a shilling apiece and came with a propaganda leaflet which strongly denounced the Germans and used the medal's incorrect date (5 May) to claim that the sinking of the Lusitania was premeditated, rather than just being incident to Germany's larger plan to sink any ship in a combat zone without warning. Proceeds from the sale of the medals benefited blinded soldiers and sailors. This is one of the British reproductions. The accompanying paperwork indicates that this medal was issued by the Lusitania Souvenir Medal Committee of Manchester Square.

    GerBav191313.jpg GerBav191314.jpg

    Goetz created patterns for most German coin denominations in circulation after WWI and these are widely collected. Above is a pattern 2 Mark.

    Gunter Keinast wrote the standard reference book on Karl Goetz medals and typically they are described using his numbering system.

    With the number of people that collect Goetz medals, I'm sure there are more that can be posted. So let's see them. Hopefully, the subject matter of some of these medals doesn't violate any CT rules.
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  3. Bart9349

    Bart9349 Junior Member

    I don't have any Goetz medals.

    About five years ago, however, Heritage coins had a great auction of Goetz medal dies.

    Somehow, these guy wondered into my possession (not my picture). It was a great gift to a family member who had an interest in World War I:

    German medal.jpg

    Austro-German Alliance Medal Hub by Karl Goetz 1914, Kienast 135 - Reverse Hub, 45mm striking surface, "I once had a comrade, you cannot find a better one."
  4. wcg

    wcg Well-Known Member

  5. chrisild

    chrisild Coin Collector

    Most of what Goetz designed are political propaganda "cartoons", except they were not printed on paper but turned into medals. :) He did do a few coin designs too, but even though he had a few produced, none of his proposals ever became a coin.

    Santinidollar likes this.
  6. Dale Krueger

    Dale Krueger New Member

    In addition to the satirical/"political" medals, Goetz did hundreds of commemorative/historical medals and many portrait medals. I'm sure, like most people he had opinions..we must not let the scourge of "political correctness" overshadow his great body of work.
    Santinidollar likes this.
  7. chrisild

    chrisild Coin Collector

    Of course he had his opinions. Now whether he designed such medals with racist designs or propaganda themes because that was what he preferred, or because that was where he saw market opportunities, I don't know. And of course everybody is free to collect his medals or not collect them.

    Santinidollar likes this.
  8. desertgem

    desertgem Senior Errer Collecktor Supporter

    So this is a transfer die I gather. Jim
  9. dadams

    dadams Well-Known Member

    Here is one I picked-up a few years ago which honestly I don't know much about:

    Goetz, Karl. 1933. Germany. ‘Ora Et Labora’ - Lead. 36 mm., 17g. Kienast 486.
    Obverse: Ora Et Labora (Pray and work) God, the Father, in clouds above two naked men, one praying, the other sowing.
    Reverse: "Sator Arepo Tenet Opera Rotas." Known as a SATOR Square. Roman numerals in periphery MDCCCCXXXIII (1933)
  10. TheFinn

    TheFinn Well-Known Member

    It's a hub.
  11. Al Kowsky

    Al Kowsky Well-Known Member

    I don't think any discussion on the medals of Karl Goetz would be complete without mentioning Gunter W. Kienast, the man who authored the two iconic books on his medals, THE MEDALS of KARL GOETZ & GOETZ II, A Supplement to The Medals of Karl Goetz. Mr. Kienast passed away on October 21, 2017, at the age of 94. I was a personal friend of Mr. Kienast, an acknowledged contributor to his 2nd book, & a distributor of both of his books in the 1980s when I had a coin business in Rochester, NY. Without the these books we would know virtually nothing about Karl Goetz.
    IMG_8153 (2).JPG IMG_8160.JPG
  12. Jaelus

    Jaelus The Hungarian Antiquarian Supporter

    Karl Goetz K-79
    Austria 1914 Copper Krone Probe
    NGC MS63 RB - KM-PN74 Pattern


    I don't really collect Goetz medals, but this one (and the silver version which I'm still missing) fit nicely with my Austrian Coronae set.

    My cell phone pics don't do this one justice. The toning is really quite stunning.
  13. Hus.thaler

    Hus.thaler Well-Known Member

    Not really a Goetz collector here, but I do collect Reformation items and Goetz produced a bunch of relevant stuff for my collection. I particularly like the three at the bottom left with Luther/John the Steadfast and Coburg Castle on the reverse.

    20190221_212316.jpg 20190221_212355.jpg
  14. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    Here’s my new Karl Goetz — The Sower of Revenge. Description from Stack’s Bowers

    F4D13561-FB0A-4B9C-B836-553E632EC237.jpeg BFBD0B86-0F0F-4B1A-B2E1-1E07F75EAFBD.jpeg
    KARL GOETZ MEDALS. France - Germany. The Sower of Revenge Cast Bronze Medal, 1914. Munich Mint. CHOICE MINT STATE. Kienast-136. 57mm. By Karl Goetz. Obverse: Marianne advancing left, sowing a field of vipers; in background, rising sun comprised of swords on the horizon; Reverse: The French cockerel standing left, defecating upon a scroll inscribed GENFER/KONVENTIONEN (Geneva Conventions); dumdum bullets to right. A rather bold and engaging design, this piece presents rich brown surfaces with an alluring glossy nature.The 'dumdum' or expanding bullet was first produced by the British at the Dum Dum Arsenal near Calcutta, India in the late 19th century. These bullets were designed to expand outward upon hitting their target, looking similar to a mushroom. In so doing, their damage to their intended target would be quicker and more severe. Owing to their destructive nature, they were banned under the Geneva Conventions. On this medal, Goetz alleges French use of the weapon in clear violation of the Conventions.

    From the Richard Jewell Collection
  15. Chris B

    Chris B Supporter! Supporter

    Very nice. Congratulations on a great addition. As you know, I got shut out at this sale. That's ok though.
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  16. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    I bid on three and won one. They were popular.
  17. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    Here is a Karl Goetz satirical medal from World War I. In “Entente Loans to Russia,” he pokes fun at the British and French who lost huge amounts of money when the Bolsheviks repudiated loans to the czarist government in 1918.
  18. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    Here’s the slab for the above medal

  19. Chris B

    Chris B Supporter! Supporter

    Here's the slab for the medal in the OP. It is larger than the oversized slab. I think they call it a Mega Slab. Part of me wishes I hadn't slabbed it, because of the cost, but I do have piece of mind that I can show it off without worry.

    For the life of me I can't find any tooling on the reverse and if there is it may something Goetz did in his shop.

  20. Santinidollar

    Santinidollar Supporter! Supporter

    Those slabs would need nitro to break them open.
  21. Gallienus

    Gallienus coinsandhistory.com

    So when was the sale? I googled and there was a Richard Jewell collection in March 2020 but they had no Karl Goetz medals. The sower one is very interesting. Karl certainly had a talent for picking interesting themes.
    Santinidollar likes this.
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