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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 75, Lot: 1250. Estimate $150. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 23 May 2007. 
Sold For $180. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

GERMANY. Gilt AR Medal (33mm, 13.96 g, 12h). Delivery of the Zeppelin LZ-126 to the United States. Dated 1924. Facing bust of Dr. Hugo Eckener / AMERIKAFAHRT DES LZ 126 (ZR III), the airship LZ 126 flying left; travel log in seven lines below. Cf. Kaiser 451. EF, silver plated, with underlying metal (bronze) showing in a few places.

The LZ-126 was built by Germany in 1923-1924, and was given to the United States as partial payment of war reparations for World War I. Dr. Hugo Eckener, director of the Graf Zeppelin airship company, piloted the ship from the factory in Friedrichshafen to Lakehurst, New Jersey. The reverse of this medal records the voyage in October of 1924, listing the dates and times of locations passed during the journey. The airship was given to the US Navy and rechristened as the USS Los Angeles (ZR-III). The Los Angeles was the only German-built airship to serve in the United States, and the only US airship not to suffer a catastrophic accident (the US-built airships, USS Shenandoah, USS Akron, and USS Macon, all crashed). It was decommissioned and dismantled in 1939.