Obverse: Profile of President Warren G. Harding / “Inauguration March Fourth 1921”
Reverse: Female Figure with Fasces / “President Warren Gamaliel Harding” / “Vice President Calvin Coolidge” / “1921” / “1925”
Designer: Darrell Crain
Medallist: R. Harris and Company
Mintage: 3 (Gold) / ~10 (Silver) / ~60 (Bronze)
- The 1921 Medal was not sanctioned by the Inaugural Committee and is not considered an “official” inaugural medal.
- In the wake of a national depression following the First World War, President Harding eliminated many inaugural traditions, including the striking of an official inaugural medal.
- The Inaugural Committee was instructed to discontinue major planning operations in January 1921, cancelling the traditional ball and parade.
- An unofficial inaugural medal was struck by the R. Harris and Company in limited quantities and is considered to be the stand-in for an official 1921 Medal.
- It is estimated that no more than 3 gold, 10 silver and 60 bronze examples exist today.
- Commentators have speculated that the Inaugural Committee contracted with R. Harris and Company to produce the medals before being disbanded. The extant medals are likely the result of a transaction that never came to full fruition.
- The female figure on the reverse represents the campaign slogan “America First.”
- Although the 1921 Medal is dated 1921-1925, President Harding did not serve his full term, suffering a fatal heart attack in 1923.