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1883 Ute Indian Captives Rescue Congress Medal

Image Information

Type Medal
Title 1883 Ute Indian Captives Rescue Congress Medal
Country United States
Side reverse
Composition silver
Diameter 36 mm rim to rim, exclusive of hanger
Weight 18 gm
Description Alan V. Weinberg comments: An 1866 Canadian Fenian Raid military medal planchet, w/original integral hanger, effaced/rim ground-down & re-engraved by masterful hand. Awarded by 1884 Congressional Act for heroism to a mixed-blood Indian scout McCann for rescuing white captives from the Ute Indians who dominated the Colorado and Utah plains. Reportedly mixed blood scouts did not warrant officially U.S. Mint-struck, Congressionally-authorized lifesaving or Medal of Honor medals due to pervasive racial feelings of the period. The Ute Indians apparently specialized in capturing white prisoners for bargaining as there is at least another incident of an Act of Congress medal to another different McCann (diff initials & obviously related to this recipient) Indian Scout for rescuing two "white children" from the Ute Indians a few yrs earlier. I chased this medal for 20 yrs when it initially sold elsewhere & ended up in an Oregon collector's estate from which I acquired this as a result of visiting a local historical bottle show & hearing of it-I immed recognized it for the medal I missed 20 yrs earlier. Images by master numismatic photographer Tom Mulvaney, email

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Image Collection Alan V. Weinberg Collection (Western Americana)
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