Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medal

This sterling silver medal is part of the 60 piece Longines Symphonette Great American Events Medal set. It shows the clipper SS Flying Cloud, with all of her sails set. The Flying Cloud set the world record for the fastest sailing passage between New York and San Francisco (the journey took 89 days and 8 hours). She held this record from 1854 until 1989 when her record was finally broken by the Thursday’s Child.

Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medallion Obverse

Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medallion Obverse

The reverse is covered in boring font, apparently written by someone who was unaware that their caps lock key was stuck. It reads “Clipperships were grand examples of the shipwright’s art and their speed and grace aptly symbolized American expansion in the nineteenth century.” Below that, there’s a dyspeptic eagle at 6:00 on the medal, with an olive branch in its talons and its wings raised over its body.

Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medallion Reverse

Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medallion Reverse

Identification code: unknown

Date: 1972

Mint Mark: n/a

Mintage: 5,000 (this one is from set P #4,224, which is stamped on the edge)

Country of origin: United States of America

Composition: Sterling Silver (92.5% silver)

Size: 39 mm – it is slightly larger than a Morgan silver dollar, but this is not a coin.

Weight: 34 grams (1.109 ounces of ASW)

Other details: Longines is a watchmaker that sponsored a classical orchestra radio show in the 1940s called the Longines Symphonette. There were several different collections of silver medals made in the 1970’s to cross-promote the radio show and the Longines watch brand – this collection was produced along with Wittnauer Precious Metals Guild.

This medal comes from the Great American Triumphs series of 60 medals. These were sold in complete sets, or in little red boxes that held two medals each. The boxes were labeled “The Wittnauer Precious Metal Guild / Symphonette Square, Larchmont, N.Y. 10538 / Makers of Fine Medallic Art”.

These medals were produced in 92.5% silver and 99.99% silver. The edge of each medal is labeled with the composition (inscribed after “Longines Symphonette”). This one is labeled “Sterling”.

I recently purchased 48 of these medals, but have compiled a list of the full set with links to the medals that I own:

1775: Battle of Concord Bridge

(1775 – no date): Patrick Henry: “Give Me Liberty, or Give Me Death” Speech

1775: Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride

1775: Founding Of Boonesborough, Kentucky

1776: Declaration Of Independence

1776: Betsy Ross

1783: Washington’s Farewell

1785-1851: James Audubon

1779: John Paul Jones – I Have Not Yet Begun To Fight

1794: Eli Whitney And His Cotton Gin

1803: Lewis & Clark Expedition

1807: Fulton’s Folly

1811-1825: Overland Trail (one that I do not have)

1812: Old Ironsides

1814: Star Spangled Banner Francis Scott Key

1815: Battle Of New Orleans

1819-1892: Walt Whitman (one that I do not have)

1835-1910: Mark Twain

1836: The Alamo

1836: Samuel B. Morse, Telegraph

1846: Fifty-Four Forty or Fight (one that I do not have)

1847: Brigham Young

1848: Gold At Sutter’s Mill

1851: Clipper Ship Flying Cloud

1851: “Go West, Young Man” (one that I do not have)

1860: Pony Express

(undated: 1961-1909): Frederic Remington (one that I do not have)

1862: Robert E. Lee

1863: Gettysburg Address

1863: The Flight of the Nez Perce (one that I do not have)

1869: Transcontinental Railroad

1872: National Parks Yellowstone

1876: Telephone – AG Bell

1876: Little Big Horn (one that I do not have – and, well, I guess it was a ‘Great American Triumph’ for the Native Americans)

1879-1935: Will Rogers

1879-1955: Albert Einstein (one that I do not have)

1886: Statue Of Liberty

1886: Samuel Gompers – AFL

1895-1948: Babe Ruth

1895-1972: J. Edgar Hoover (one that I do not have)

1898: Battle Of San Juan Hill

1898-1937: George Gershwin

1898-1961: Ernest Hemingway (one that I do not have)

(undated: 1899): Log Float (one that I do not have)

1901: Walter Reed

1909: Model T Ford

1903: The First Flight

1904: Panama Canal

1909: Perry Finds North Pole

1918: The Doughboys

1920: Women’s Suffrage

1927: Lindbergh Flies the Atlantic (one that I do not have)

1929-1968: Reverend Martin Luther King (one that I do not have)

1931-1933: The Macon & Akron

1933: Inauguration Of President Roosevelt

1935: Flight of the China Clipper Seaplane

1941: Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms

1945: V.J. Day (one that I do not have)

1954: Salk Polio Vaccine

1959: Dawn Of The Jet Age

1961: Kennedy’s Inauguration (one that I do not have)

1909: Purchase Of Alaska

1976: 2 Centuries of Liberty, Peace, and Progress (one that I do not have)

Estimated Value: Approximately $45-55 with silver at $42/ounce

4 responses to “Clipper Ship Flying Cloud Silver Medal

  1. Joseph C. LaRocca

    i have 5 commemorative wittnauer mint coins all are made of pewter all are in excellent condition with 4 of them are incased with 2 coins in each, one of them is in red box thats labled wittnauer mint this one is the one (Man’s walk on the moon 1969) in excellent condition, (Purchase of Alaska 1867) (Clipper Ship Flying Cloud 1851) (Samuel Gompers- A.F.L. 1886) what is the estimated worth to you for all the coins please let me know asap
    Thank You

  2. Mr. LaRocca –

    The pewter medals don’t have much value – I have seen them sell for $5-10 on eBay, but pewter is not a precious metal, so there is no premium due to their metal content. You will probably be lucky to find a buyer for all 4 for <$10.

    Are you sure that they are the pewter versions? Check the edge lettering – if they are silver, they will have the word "STERLING" or the fineness "0.999" depending on which type of silver medal they are.

    -Yours,
    George

  3. The pewter medals seem to sell for about $5 apiece on eBay. Some of the prettier ones (like the Clipper ship) occasionally command a premium ($10 or so?).

  4. Thanks for your extremely well done website. I’ve only recently become interested in collecting coin style medallions, and frankly still don’t have much of a clue about the history or details of this type of collecting. I’m particularly interested in the Longines Wittnauer silver medals (approximate silver dollar size). I have a fairly extensive collection of Morgans, Commemoratives and other U.S. minted coins, but think collecting these will generate a new and exciting dimension of collecting interest for me. (About four months ago, I was diagosed with cancer which will limit my ability to participate in activities that I used to be involved with and required a higher level of stamina. So, coin collecting has become a renewed focus and passion [from my childhood years] that works well with the requirements of current life style changes.) Again, I thank you for sharing your impressive knowledge, which will enable neophites like me to acquire more knowledge in this more specialized venue of collecting.

    Warm regards,
    Tom

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