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Chicago Century of Progress 1933 Expo - Italian

I'm in the process of collecting medals from the exposition ever since I visited downtown Chicago and it's waterfront this year (2011). Some of the original sites remain (including the planetarium). Attached is a photo of an Italian Exhibit SCD I purchased (HK-471A) from one of the SCD book authors. It's a great medal with an amazing high-relief 3D design. It reminds me of the 2009 US Mint High Relief Gold offering.

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  • HK-471A.jpeg

As an update, I ran across this recently -- a medal that commemorates the flight of General Italo Balbo to the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago, Illinois from Italy. On July 1, 1933, General Italo Balbo, Minister of Air under Mussolini led a fleet of 25 Savoia-Marchetti SM.55X flying boats in a mass formation flight to the Chicago's World Fair. In an aerial spectacle aimed at demonstrating Italian technological might under fascist rule. Balbo's 100 crewmen practiced precision formation flying and water landings for months before taking off from Orbetello seaplane base for the first leg of the round trip transatlantic flight. Despite the loss of a plane and crewman in Amsterdam, 24 aircraft landed safely on Lake Michigan, having flown 6,065 miles in just under 49 hours flying time. Following celebrations in Chicago and New York, the fleet took off for Rome on July 25. A crash in the Azores took the life of a second crewman, but Balbo's remaining 23 flying boats arrived home to a patriotic welcome on August 12, still flying in formation. The medal is bronze (2 5/16 inch diameter) and the medalist was R. Morbiducci. If you have plenty of money, feel free to purchase it 🙂 --

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  • 1933-Italian-Air-Armada-COP-Medal-1.jpeg

rjesinger - this is a great update, and finally explains the airplane motif on that coin! Well done!! I would think that your medal should also be included in the index. What is it's diameter?

I love the art-deco style of the Balbo medal! The story of the planes probably explains the ones shown on the sky on the reverse of #471A.

Here's the other medal HK-471.  As an aside, I was recently able to purchase one of the Balbo medals (2 5/16 inch) in an auction.  I've only seen a few over the years... losing out on the last auction on one about 5 years ago.  They don't seem high priced but do seem scarce.

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  • HK-471.jpeg