Searching for sterling Wittnauer presidential medals

Discussion in 'Bullion Investing' started by gsalexan, Dec 3, 2013.

  1. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    This seems like a good place to post a scavenger hunt I've been on for a few years. A little background:

    In 1972, the Wittnauer Mint tried a collaboration with American Bank Note Company. Wittnauer produced 36 sterling silver medals commemorating all the U.S. presidents to date. ABNC printed engraved presidential portraits as counterparts. A hole was die-cut in the paper below the portrait for the medal and the set was combined in a Lucite holder.

    Fig.2.JQ Adams set.jpg

    The high-relief medals -- both a little more than a troy ounce – had a pewter-like matte finish. Wittnauer also issued a gold-plated proof-like version, but only the matte-finish medals were used for the ABNC pairing.

    These show up periodically on eBay as bullion, but often the medals were broken out of the case, which was tossed. I've been able to find 32 intact, out of the 36, but I'm missing presidents Tyler, Polk, Lincoln, and Andrew Johnson. I'm actually more interested in the engravings.

    Has anyone come across these? If you have a complete set (or just the four I mentioned), I'd like to see photos or scans, in order to document which engravings were used.

    Thanks for any help you can provide!
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  3. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    Anyone? ... anyone? ... Bueller?
  4. skbrooks1369

    skbrooks1369 Active Member

    I haven't seen anything before on these. I'll keep an eye out, though.

  5. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

  6. havepresidents

    havepresidents New Member

    My daughter came upon this forum while researching the collection I have. I don't know if you're still interested, but I have the full set of presidents, all intact, in the wooden box, also with the brochures that originally came with them.
  7. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    Hi - Thanks for responding. I will send you a private message regarding this.
  8. Bonnie Sue Hurley

    Bonnie Sue Hurley New Member

    *****I have a complete set, still in the holders, in the wooden case they came in. edited Bonnie
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2014
  9. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    Great! I'm still trying to get clear images of those four presidents - Lincoln, Polk, Tyler and Andrew Johnson. Specifically the engraved portraits above the medals. If you have a scanner or a good camera I'd love to get hi-res images. Feel free to send me a private message.
  10. Duner

    Duner New Member

    I have a gold plated set. Want to move them. In wood case. The gold is not very good shape. Most are damaged. They may not be desireable as collection. What are they worth as bullion?
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2014
  11. Duner

    Duner New Member


    So who did the engravings for the gold plated set?
  12. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    Whoa! You just shifted my paradigm. I was under the mistaken impression that the gold-plated set was not issued with engravings, just the medals alone. The engravings were all done by the American Bank Note Co. You can see their imprint at the bottom if you use a magnifier.

    Would you mind posting Polk, Tyler, and Andrew Johnson?

    I would guess bullion value is around $1 over spot per medal. But definitely try selling them as a set before you break it up. I've seen how the plating starts to come off over time -- they didn't do a very good job. But that shouldn't affect melt value.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  13. Irishjr

    Irishjr New Member

    I only have the gold version of Lincoln, Polk and Tyler. Are you sure there was a Andrew Johnson? I do have an Andrew Jackson.
  14. Irishjr

    Irishjr New Member

    I have the gold set. Have Tyler, Polk, Lincoln but not Andrew Johnson. Are you sure it is not Andrew Jackson?
  15. Irishjr

    Irishjr New Member

    I have the gold set. Have all you mentioned except Johnson. Are you sure it is not Jackson?
  16. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    President Andrew Johnson (1865-68) succeeded Lincoln. There was also a president Andrew Jackson (1829-37) but I'm not looking for that one. :) Would you mind posting scans of the engravings of Polk and Tyler?

    I'll send you a private message -- check your inbox.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2015
  17. vbullinger

    vbullinger New Member

    I have the complete set, in sterling silver, in extremely good condition, in their frames, in the original box. How much is it worth and where can I sell it for a reasonable price? I'd be happy to post pictures.
  18. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    I'm not personally looking for the full set. At this point, all I'd really like to see are good quality scans of three of the engravings (not the medals, just the engravings): Polk, Tyler, and Andrew Johnson. I have never seen those particular images and this has been a long term research project I'd like to wrap up. If you could post those three that would be a great help!

    As far as value, I'd have to say these typically don't sell for much above bullion prices, at least on ebay. I would guess maybe $2 over spot, per medal, so right now roughly $19+$2=$21. Since you have the original box and the full set of 36, you might be able to get close to $800, if you're lucky. A dealer would likely price the set at $1500, but unless you own a coin store you probably won't get full retail. Another option would be to take the set to a major coin show and shop it around.
    vbullinger likes this.
  19. vbullinger

    vbullinger New Member

    $800 would be nice. Anything over $500 sounds like a win, to be honest. But I'll take a look at coin shows.
  20. gsalexan

    gsalexan Intaglio aficionado

    But before you sell it, would you mind posting scans of those three engravings -- Polk, Tyler, and Andrew Johnson? :D Or just a sharp photo would suffice.
  21. Gloria S.

    Gloria S. New Member

    We are looking for two 1972 Wittnauer Presidential Signature Coins 24K over Sterling. The two we are looking for is James Madison and Richard Nixon. Does anybody have these 2 or know of anyone who would like to sell them?
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