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Jonas Coolidge Hills


Born and died in Hartford, Connecticut. Educated by private tutors and because of ill health did not attend college. Married Elsie M. Sessions, daughter of William Sessions, in 1896. He was at one time employed by a hardware firm but was not generally engaged in business.

Assembled a collection of war medals and coins decribed as the finest of its kind in the world. He was member number 518 of the ANA, a member of the ANS and of the New York Numismatic Club. He was a member of the Sons of the American Revolution, a 32nd degree Mason and a Shriner.

An auction of items from his collection was conducted February 12-14, 1884. A Libertas Americana medal in silver realized $27. A silver proof of the George F. Robinson medal realized $16.50. A "Smith" cent of 1793 realized $10.

His will left the collection of war medals and relics to the Wadsworth Atheneum of Hartford with the provision that they be exhibited for at least six months each year. The collection included medals issued for service in the Civil War. It also included relics such as tattered pieces of the flag that flew at Fort Sumter. He had a fine representation of Indian Peace medals.

His will left his collection of stamps to a nephew, William Ellery Hills. His coin collection went to his nephew and a niece, Gertrude W. Thompson. His collection was sold at auction by Lyman Low in his last two sales in 1923 and 1924.

bio: NCAB 16 (photo); NUM 26 Dec 1913 pages 621-632

photo: NUM 27 Jan 1914 page 7

Source credit: Pete Smith, American Numismatic Biographies


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