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Columbia and Lady Washington Medal

Origin: America, Massachusetts, Boston & Newburyport
Diam: 40mm
Museum Purchase, The Lasser Family
Acc. No. 2010-112
Label:In 1787 the ships Columbia and Lady Washington left Boston and sailed around Cape Horn to North America's Pacific Coast. There the crews sought furs to trade in China for silks, porcelain, and tea, all to be resold in Boston upon the vessels' return. In preparation for the venture, medals like the one illustrated here were struck on copper discs likely prepared by Paul Revere. Intended for trade with Native Americans, these were the first medals struck in the new United States.