|Title:||Past Sachem medal|
|Description:||Tammany Society (Democratic) Past Sachem medal with ribbon and disk with picture of Chief Tammany.|
|Condition:||ribbon is crudely sewn to top medal but is in good condition. The pin is intact and workable. Back on disk is tarnished - front picture is clear and quite nice. Considering the apparant age the condition is admirable.|
|Origin:||Found in my grandmother's keepsake "stuff" along with Democratic campaign buttons ranging from1880 (Hancock & English) to 1916 (Hughes & Fairbanks...staunch Democrats one and all. There was even a stickpin (with pin missing) of Horace Greely. All were from Indiana, in and around Laurel, Indianapolis and later Richmond, Indiana|
|Appraised By:||Judith Katz-Schwartz|
|Appraiser Comments:||The Tammany Party was organized in 1789 as the Society of St. Tammany. It was named after a legendary Delaware Indian chief. Eventually it developed a close association with the Democratic party. Tammany Hall became a political powerhouse in New York City, under the leadership of Boss Tweed, and is still remembered for its corruption.
Webster's Dictionary defines "sachem" as "A chief of a Native American tribe or confederation, especially an Algonquian chief." or "A high official of the Tammany Society, a political organization in New York City." So, this badge once was used to designate a former high party official.
The last patent date on the back of your ribbon is 1893 (these celluloid badges were not yet in use in 1793), so this item most likely dates somewhere from that point until 1901, when Seth Low became mayor of New York, and temporarily quashed Tammany.
Although the condition of your badge is not perfect, it is remarkable for a celluloid piece of its age. It is a desirable piece for political memorabilia collectors, and especially those from New York. It is also an attractive collectible for collectors of Native American memorabilia.
Since I am unable to examine this item in person, it is assumed for the purpose of this appraisal to be a late 19th century Tammany Hall Past Sachem badge in good condition, with no flaws aside from the re-sewn ribbon and the tarnish on the back. The values given below are based on these assumptions.
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