October 19, 2017 – Laura Cardin Fraser (1889-1996) was the first woman ever to design a medal for the US Treasury. She became so famous for her creations – sculptures, fountains, coins, and medals – that the private Medallic Art Company decided to make a film, which at the time was still a quite young medium, about the artist.
In 1929/1930, the film ‘The Medal Maker’ was produced. It features the artist working on the details of a model for a new medal, and the viewers witness the entire production process up until the medal is finally finished.
This film was presumed lost after 1937. It was rediscovered as late as 1997, and incorporated in a new videocassette. Visual artist and former US Mint Chief Engraver Elizabeth Jones provided the comment to this silent film. After the Medallic Art Company digitized the film in 2009, it is now available to watch for everyone. It’s a fascinating glimpse into early 20th century medal making!