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Pierre_Henri

Extremely Rare 1914 Norwegian Medal: DURBAN (Natal): WHY was it struck?

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Pierre_Henri
Posted (edited)

The Constitution of Norway was first adopted on 16 May 1814 and subsequently signed and dated on 17 May 1814 by the Norwegian Constituent Assembly.

 

With the centenary celebrations in 1914 some medals were struck e.g. the Grimstad medal, the Grunnlovens Fader medal, the Crown Prince Olav medal and then the strangest of them all the Durban (Natal) medal.

 

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The only reference that I can find on this medal is a catalogue in the Norwegian language that is not that difficult to follow

 

1914 DURBAN Laget til Den norske Forening i Durban, Natalprovinsen, Sør Afrika. Motiv advers: CHRISTIAN FREDERIK HAAKON VII, portrett av kongene mot venstre. Motiv revers: ENIG OG TRO TIL DOVRE FALDER, FALSEN, CHRISTIE portretter, Eidsvoldsbygningen. DURBAN under. Gravør: Ivar Throndsen. Signatur: THRONDSEN.F. på Haakons ordensbånd. Diameter: 31mm. Referanser: Frogn 54 - 54a, Støren og Holst 398, JA 61A

 

It catalogs the silver issue at 8000 krone (900 Euros) and the bronze issue at 4000 krone (450 Euros)

 

Why on earth where these medals issued what is the connection with Durban?

Edited by Pierre_Henri

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deonfourie

The medal is to commemorate the centenary of the Norwegian constitution.

Why Durban? Simple - Durban and the southern Natal coast had just about the largest Norwegian community in South Africa. Settlers, seafarers, Lutheran missionaries, a big seamen's mission, and the whole community came together to celebrate national occasions. 34 families emigrated to Natal from Norway in 1882, another 90 in the 1890s, and by 1900 Durban had its own Norwegian-language newspapers, Norwegian school, church and community hall.

 

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