Over the years we have offered several examples of Karl Goetz’s beautifully executed table medal, which commemorates the voyage of the LZ-126 from Germany to the USA.
As a part of the WW I’s reparations, Germany was obligated to turn over a zeppelin to the U. S. government. This all took place in 1924. Hugo Eckner was the company’s head. Like old Graf von Zeppelin himself, he was a real salesman and promoter. He knew if he was to save his company, he had to convince the world that zeppelins had potential not only as military tools, but as ultimate travel conveyances between countries. This was particularly true when crossing large bodies of water was involved. Ultimately, zeppelins made frequent trans-Atlantic voyages to the U.S., South America, and even Japan. The good doctor himself personally flew the LZ-126 to Boston, New York and finally, Lakehurst, NJ (scene of the destruction of the LZ-129 Hindenburg in May 1937), where it was handed over to American authorities and renamed the U. S. S. Los Angeles. Eckner went on to design and build the highly successful LZ-127 Graf Zeppelin and the LZ-129 Hindenburg.
The table medal is quite unusual. All of the previous table medals I have seen commemorating the event were made of silver, nickel, or even aluminum. This example is gold-toned and is made of either brass or bronze, possibly. All of its other details are identical with the other medals. The obverse shows Hugo Eckner. The reverse shows the LZ-126 flying across the Atlantic. Below that are details of the flight. At the table medal’s very top somebody has neatly drilled a small hole so that it might have had a ring installed for supporting a ribbon, or for some other similar purpose.