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It's Mokie's Blog

06 Aug 2020

A Love Story

Medals | It's Mokie

It is often said that immigrants have the deepest love for their place of immigration because they have seen the alternative and they more fully embrace the wonderfulness of their new home. Many of you who have read my blogs over the last couple of years have probably picked up on my love of Pittsburgh PA. I was not born there; I have only spent about 1/3 of my life there but it is home and it is someplace I love with a fierceness that even surprises me at times.

Pittsburgh is an old city, it was built on the bones of an older French fort (Fort Duquesne) on the Forkes of the Ohio (as it used to be described). It is a city that provided the iron and steel for massive cannons in every war from the Civil War to Vietnam. It is a city that was devastated by the collapse of the steel industry in the 1970's with a diaspora of citizenry which included my family. It is the reason why there are hordes of Pittsburgh Steeler fans through the south and the west. But it is a city that has reinvented itself and become a mecca for technology and medicine. It is where Dr. Jonas Salk cured Polio, it is where Dr. Bennet Omalu did his groundbreaking work on the effect of continued concussions on the athlete's brain. It is where the tallest building which used to be called the U.S. Steel building is now called the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) building. A changing of the economy reflected in one massive building.

Today I would like to display my Pittsburgh Bicentennial Medal, it was struck by the Medallic Art Company in 1958 (the year of my birth) to commemorate 200 years of history. Pittsburgh and I are both a lot older now, but we are happy to live with each other, in the State I Love.

Diameter - 3 inches

Sculptor - Ralph J. Menconi

Comments

Rock Hound

Level 4

Good story and awesome medal. I was born in 2009 one day before Lincolns bicentennial birth and when I got into coins I decided to collect Lincolns and to me they are the most beautiful coins in my opinion.

Doug S.

Level 4

Thats a beautiful medal. Great story!! Thanks for sharing. Doug

user_80021

Level 2

Lived here 42yrs now and was excited to visit my first coin show and it be in my hometown. It is ironic I had the time because of the virus and it is cancelled because of the same. On the bright side I am able to get a more in depth education on collecting as I did not realize how extensive this hobby can be explored when I started it a year and a half ago. Happy Collecting to All from Pittsburgh, PA!!

It's Mokie

Level 6

Are you familiar with the Western Pennsylvania Numismatic Society? We are always looking for new members.

Long Beard

Level 5

Contrarily, I was born just south of Pittsburgh and have called it home for fifty-three years. I remember the many Steeler games with my uncles in the mid-seventies through early eighties, the Pirate games with my dad and living on Mexican War Street a few years while attending the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. This is not to forget all the concerts at A.J. Polumbo, the Stanley, Soldiers and Sailors or the Civic Arena (Which I still refer to it as such). I find myself in Oakland quite often these days, the museum with my niece or Jerry's Records with my nephew looking to score a treasure or two. I have a few tokens and medals somewhere relating to the area, now if I could only remember where they are?

It's Mokie

Level 6

Don't forget the excellent acoustics at the Syria Mosque. I saw Springsteen there during his Born to Run tour, still the best concert I ever attended.

I. R. Bama

Level 5

Yeah, I have a coin dog. Freckles gets very interested when the coins come out and he wants to look at them too, He likes to be involved with what I'm doing. I call him my boon companion.

"SUN"

Level 6

Very attractive medal. I like bronze medals.

Longstrider

Level 6

Great passion filled blog. It's interesting to read each others history. I thought we were going to meat this year bit it didn't work out. Be even more fun when when we do. I knew this blog was written by you as soon as soon as I saw the cat hair on the medal. Thanks CUZ.

It's Mokie

Level 6

Cuz, you nailed it, Shaggy was walking all over my table setup and my attempts to gently shoo her away were not happening. She finally got distracted by Lisa (she always runs to Lisa) so I snapped away. Did not notice the hair until the picture was posted. Oh well, that's life with two cats. At least Tessa has no interest in coins.

World_Coin_Nut

Level 5

Great blog Mokie. Thanks for sharing your passion with us. I found it quite inspirational.

coinsbygary

Level 5

This is a neat medal featuring a fascinating city. I have only visited Pittsburg briefly and I definitely want to go back at some point in the future. Perhaps when the ANA meanders its way through there for the Worlds Fair of Money as they promised. 1958 was a very good year and like yours, the year of my birth. I am fascinated by your family history there. It reminds me of my ancestral German heritage in the state I live , Wisconsin. It is our destiny to meet each other sometime soon!

It's Mokie

Level 6

We'll have to find a show halfway between. That would be fun, get as many of us as possible at the same show.

Mike

Level 7

One of the inspirational blogs I have read. I as most of you know was also born overseas. Ireland. Despite living in this great country I still have a deep love of my original home. Great blog and story and of course a beautiful medal. Thanks for bringing up my memories.

A great medal from a great home. I was deeply disappointed when i couldn't travel there this year. It has so much to offer, and the World's fair of money was a sweet bonus. Lovely medal!

Golfer

Level 5

Beautuful medal. Pittsburgh has a great history and is a great city. Thanks for sharing your medal and history.

I. R. Bama

Level 5

Thanks for sharing your story Mokie, it's nice to have an opportunity to get to know you better

I. R. Bama

Level 5

A great story and a beautiful medal! Where did you all move to and when did you go back? Was your dad in the steel industry?

It's Mokie

Level 6

My Dad was in the Army, that's why I was born in Japan, when he retired in 1963, we moved to Pittsburgh because his parents were also in Pennsylvania, and he had also been born in Pennsylvania. We lived in Pennsylvania until 1978 then My Dad retired from the Federal Civil Service and we moved to California so we would be closer to our Japanese relatives My Wife, Daughter, and I moved back in 2013. I always wanted to return and it is everything I remembered, just a charming and wonderful place to spend my retirement years.

Oobie

Level 4

Beautiful story, Mokie. I love stories like this because they bring out the best of the hobby. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!

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