American Institute Medal
diameter: 2 in. ( 5.1 cm )
Silver struck medal with obverse showing figure of Liberty holding laurel wreath and pole surmounted by Phrygian cap; at left are tools of agriculture and sailing ship in the background; at right -- symbols of American state and cornucopia; legend above: "AMERICAN INSTITUTE"; inscription in exergue: "NEW YORK." Reverse has space for engraving at center, surrounded by laurel wreath, with legend: "AWARDED TO" and engraved inscription: "JOHN ROGERS/THE MEDAL OF TASTE/for/Groups of Statuary/1890."
The American Institute was founded in NY in 1827 as a national organization dedicated to supporting the industrial and agrarian arts. Its annual fairs were in the words of Luther Bradish, 10th President of the N-YHS, "extensive and brilliant displays of the most valuable specimens of domestic skill and industry." John Rogers (1829-1904) created statuary groups in plaster, an affordable alternative to popular marble models. He focused on everyday as well as Civil War and equestrian subjects.
Harkness, Andrew. "The American Institute - Catalyst for the American Greatness." TAMS (Token and Medal Society) Journal 29, no. 4 (August 1989): 123-135.
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.