Medallion No. 12


Image courtesy of Downies




Die Sinkers


Number Struck


Release Price 


Harold Higson

K. G. Luke & Sons, Melbourne

50 mm

100 Silver

200 Bronze

$6.75 Silver

$4.00 Bronze

Original Order Form for Cook Explorer Medallion



All medals are individually numbered. The three living Honorary Life Members at the time were each presented with a silver medal. Bronze medals were presented to the Museum of Arts & Science at Ultimo, NSW and to the Royal Numismatic Society of New Zealand. Two medals (a matching pair) were sold for $4.00 (the cost of packing and posting with insurance) to the Captain Cook Landing Place Museum Trust in NSW. Two reverse and one obverse trial strikes in lead were in our Archives. A Gilt piece and an Oxidised Silver (on bronze) came up in a Melbourne auction in 1993 although we have no record of issuing in these finishes.

From the 1996 edition of the Australian Numismatist:

It was decided in Council that a special series of medals be struck to honour noted feats of exploration. This series would not necessarily be commemorative, which proved to be an unfortunate mistake. The first medal issued was to honour Captain James Cook, and as this was issued in 1967, three years before the bicentenary of his discovery of the east coast, it had only a limited appeal. Consequently, when the bicentenary did come, we could not issue another medal on the same theme, “It would not be ethical”. We lost the opportunity to “cash in” on the big sales that various commercial firms and banks had. If we had done so, we would have made enough money to finance our future medal productions. In early 1969, the Council decided that the series should consist of twelve medals; only four were struck. This series was in a two inch diameter size instead of our usual inch and a half. With grand plans for this series, we had made a large number of lettered boxes to hold the medals, either as pairs or individual examples. We still have these boxes which are useless for any other purpose.