1915 Arkansas So Called Dollar HK403 Medal

This medal has almost uncirculated details, but it is pretty beat up around the edges. There are numerous rim dings and gouges.

The obverse shows the state seal of Arkansas. This seal is divided into 2 rings: outer ring of the seal contains the legend “Great Seal of the State of Arkansas”. The inner seal shows the Angel of Mercy on one side, the Sword of Justice on the other, and the Goddess of Liberty at the top, with a bald eagle in the center. The eagle’s beak holds a scroll inscribed with the state motto “Regnant Populus”  (Latin for ‘The People Rule’). The eagle’s chest is covered with a shield decorated with symbols of Arkansas’ agricultural wealth, including a steamboat, a plow, a beehive, and a sheaf of wheat.

This so-called dollar adds an additional ring to the state seal. In the outermost ring is the legend “Panama Pacific International Exposition * San Francisco, 1915”. The Panama Pacific Expo is often referred to simply as the PanPac World’s Fair.

1915 Arkansas State So Called Dollar HK403 Obverse

1915 Arkansas State So Called Dollar HK403 Obverse

The reverse shows a large building, presumably the Arkansas pavilion from the World’s Fair. The building is 2 stories, with two towers on either end that have their own peaked roofs. The legend reads “Arkansas Building” (in a cartouche). Below that, the sub-legend reads “Arkansas Supplies the World With Aluminum“.  At the top of the medal, from 9:00 to 3:00 is the legend “*** Arkansas Exposition Fund ***.  At the bottom, from 8:00 to 4:00 is the legend “The Land of Plenty”. The mint is identified in tiny letters at the very bottom “W & H Co. Newark N J“. This stands for Whitehead & Hoag Company of New Jersey.

1915 Arkansas State So Called Dollar HK403 Reverse

1915 Arkansas State So Called Dollar HK403 Reverse

Identification code: HK-403

Date: 1915

Mintage: Approximately 500-1,000 were produced. Fewer than 100 have been graded in any condition.

Composition: Aluminum

Size: 38 mm

Weight: unknown

Other details: Up until the early twentieth century, Aluminum was a precious metal somewhere in value between gold and platinum. Did you know that the capstone on the Washington Monument is made out of aluminum?

Arkansas produced more than 90% of the nation’s bauxite ore (which is refined with large amounts of electricity to produce aluminum). Also, the likeness for the Arkansas State Building seems very well executed:

Arkansas Pavilion at the 1915 World's Fair
Arkansas Pavilion at the 1915 World’s Fair

Estimated Value: $20-40 in this beat up condition. In MS-61, it sells for $200+

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *