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Original U.S. WWII United States Merchant Marine Medal Lot - (2) Items

Regular price $295.00

Item Description

Original Items: Only One Lot of 2 Available. This is a fantastic pair of US Merchant Marine medals. The tradition of awarding medals to America's military men and women dates to the American Revolution. On Aug. 7, 1782, Gen. George Washington established the first authorized US military decoration—the Badge of Military Merit, which eventually transformed into the Purple Heart medal we are familiar with today.

The United States Merchant Marine is an organization composed of United States civilian mariners and U.S. civilian and federally owned merchant vessels. Both the civilian mariners and the merchant vessels are managed by a combination of the government and private sectors, and engage in commerce or transportation of goods and services in and out of the navigable waters of the United States. The Merchant Marine primarily transports domestic and international cargo and passengers during peacetime, and operate and maintain deep-sea merchant ships, tugboats, towboats, ferries, dredges, excursion vessels, charter boats and other waterborne craft on the oceans, the Great Lakes, rivers, canals, harbors, and other waterways. In times of war, the Merchant Marine can be an auxiliary to the United States Navy, and can be called upon to deliver military personnel and materiel for the military.

The Medals in This Lot:

- Merchant Marine World War II Victory Medal: The Merchant Marine World War II Victory Medal is a decoration of the United States Merchant Marine established by an Act of Congress on August 8, 1946.

The decoration is awarded to officers and men of the U.S. Merchant Marine who served aboard American-flagged merchant ships for at least 30 days between December 7, 1941, and September 2, 1945.

The medal is a bronze disc suspended from a ribbon with wide red edges and a red center flanked by narrow stripes of yellow, green, blue, and white. The front of the medal shows a woman standing on the ocean's surface holding a trident in her right hand and an olive branch in her left hand. To the left of the woman is the word "WORLD" and to the right of her is "WAR II". The reverse side shows an anchor inside a rope circle, around which is wound a ribbon marked "FIRMITAS", "ADVERSARIA", and "SUPERAT" (Latin for "The strength to overcome an adversary"). In a circle around the edge of the reverse side are the words "UNITED STATES MERCHANT MARINE 1941-1945".

- Merchant Marine Mariners Medal: The Merchant Marine Mariners Medal is a decoration of the United States Merchant Marine. Because the Merchant Marine was not considered a branch of the U.S. Armed Forces, the Purple Heart was not available to Merchant Mariners; as such, the Mariner's Medal was established by an Act of Congress on 10 May 1943 to solve this dilemma.

Awarded only to members of the United States Merchant Marine, the Mariner's Medal recognizes seamen who were killed or wounded as a direct result of conflict against an opposing armed force; in specific, it was awarded to any seaman who while serving in a ship during a war period is wounded, suffers physical injury, or suffers through dangerous exposure as a result of an act of enemy of the United States.

Designed by Paul Manship, subsequent awards of the medal are represented by 5/16th inch gold stars affixed to both the suspension ribbon and the ribbon bar.

The cases supplied with the medal were also used for the Merchant Marine Distinguished Service Medal and the Merchant Marine Meritorious Service Medal.

On original Second World War issues of the Mariner's Medal, a small triangle separates "United" and "States"; re-issues have a small dot. Also on originals, the designer's initials "P.M." (Paul Manship), are below the wreath, to either side of the cuff; subsequent re-issues of the medal lack these devices.

A wonderful pair of medals that come more than ready for further research and display.

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