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SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)

SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)
SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)
SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)
SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)
SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)SA Union: Kruger Statue Removal & Unveiling (Afrikaans Version)
Form: Circular. Some of the silver medals and all of the bronzed base metal medals have an attached lug for a wire hanger.
By: Otto Schultz (adapted) / South African Mint
Date: 1954
Ref:  AM: 176; Hern: 398; Laidlaw: 0074a;
Variations:
SizeMetalMassValue
32.3 mm9ct Gold (proof-like)17.2 gm$390
32.2 mmSterling Silver (proof-like)16.0 gm$40
32.2 mmBronze (matt)15.1 gm$12
32,3 mmSilver (with lug)16.7 gm$15
32.2 mmBronzed Base Metal (with lug) 14.8 gm$8

Edge: Plain

Obverse: Bust of Paul Kruger, left (same as Z.A.R. coinage). Legend above: “STEPHANUS JOHANNES PAULUS KRUGER”, and below between stops: “1825-1904”

Reverse: Across: “KERKPLEIN / PRETORIA / (Protea flower with leaves) / ONTHULLING / 11.10.54 (Church Square Pretoria unveiling)”. Legend: “KRUGERSTANDBEELDVERSKUIWING (Kruger statue removal)”. At the bottom a small laurel wreath. The gold medal stamped: “S.A.M.” and: “9CT” and the silver medal: “S.A.M” and “STG”.

Notes: The gold, silver and bronze medals, without the lugs, issued as a set of three inside a oblong blue case from the SA Mint.

A similar medal (Laidlaw 0074b) was issued with English wording on the reverse.

The Kruger statue was a gift to the city of Pretoria from the Jewish financier Sammy Marks. It was sculpted by Anton van Wouw in 1898 and cast in bronze in Europe for a cost of ten thousand pounds sterling. The intention was to mount the statue in Church Square and a plinth had been constructed there for that purpose. Unfortunately, because of the war, the arrival of the statue was delayed and a fountain was constructed on the plinth instead. When the statue finally arrived it was positioned in front of Princes Park. Later it was moved to Pretoria’s railway station when that building was constructed in 1910. Finally, fifty years after Kruger’s death, it was moved to its originally intended location in Church Square. Prime Minister D.F. Malan unveiled the statue on 11th October 1954.

Sammy Marks is better known among numismatists for the striking of one of South Africa’s rarer coins. the 1898 ZAR gold tickey, or threepence. Perhaps the donation of a statue in Kruger’s honour went some way towards influencing Kruger to permit Marks the run of the Pretoria Mint for a day to produce these coins.