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Certificate of Merit Medal, miniature
[US365]
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Certificate of Merit Medal, miniature
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Miniature circular gilt bronze medal with loop for ribbon suspension; the face with an eagle centrally, its wings partly spread, its head facing left, circumscribed ‘VIRTUTIS ET AUDACIAE MONUMENTUM ET PRAEMIUM’ (Bravery and Daring are their own Monument and Reward); the reverse inscribed ‘FOR / MERIT’ centrally within a wreath of oak, circumscribed above ‘UNITED STATES ARMY’, thirteen five-pointed stars around the lower edge; diameter 16.12mm (0.63 inch); on replaced correct ribbon. The Medal had its origins in the Certificate of Merit instituted by Act of Congress on 3 March 1847 to be awarded for qualifying service in the war with Mexico of 1846 to 1848 and reinstituted on 22 June 1974. The Medal was authorised by War Department General Orders on 11 January 1905 for all those holding Certificate of Merit and rescinded by act of Congress on 9 July 1918, being superseded by the Distinguished Service Medal. The Certificate of Merit - and thus the Medal - was awarded for gallantry in action during the Mexican War of 1846 to 1848 ‘to any private soldier who has distinguished himself by gallantry performed in the presence of the enemy’, from 1874 to 1892 ‘for extraordinary gallantry by private soldiers in the presence of the enemy’ and from 1892 to 1918 to enlisted members of the Army ‘for distinguished service whether in action or otherwise, of valuable character to the United States, as, for example, extraordinary exertion in the preservation of human life, or in the preservation of public property, or rescuing public property from destruction by fire or other-wise, or any hazardous service by which the Government is saved loss in men and material’. The medal is rare.

 
Certificate of Merit Medal, miniature
Click to enlarge
Certificate of Merit Medal, miniature
Click to enlarge
Certificate of Merit Medal, miniature
Click to enlarge
     
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