Medal, "Virginia "Happy While United" Indian Peace Medal"

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  • Maker: Robert Scot
  • Virginia, Richmond or Williamsburg
  • 1780
  • Bronze (cast)
  • Purchase partially underwritten by the Lasser Family Fund of the Jewish Communal Fund
  • 2009-6

Unique in the history of colonial Amer-Indian relations is the "Happy While United" peace medal produced in Virginia in 1780. Based on designs by noted artist Pierre Eugene du Simitiere and New York silversmith Daniel Christian Feuter, these large cast brass medals were produced somewhere between Richmond and Williamsburg in late 1780 at the behest of Governor Thomas Jefferson. In fact, an example identical to Colonial Williamsburg's was recorded as a gift from Isaac Zane, of Marlboro Iron Works fame, to du Simitiere some time before May of 1781.

Using the peace pipe scene from an earlier medal made in New York City, the Virginia example uses the fledgling state's first seal. With the goddess Virtue trampling what is no doubt George III, the legend reads Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God.

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