You’d typically find military coins or challenge coins in an antique shop or a collectors shop. But, what are these coins? What are they for? Why some of these coins are so expensive?
Well, military coins have been used for ages. They have been used by military men around the world to challenge their fellow soldiers. These coins are carried by sailors, airmen, marines, and soldiers. There are many stories about how the use of challenge coins started. But, according to the legend, the use of these coins started in 1917 during the World War I. A wealthy soldier ordered a bunch of bronze medallions and asked the blacksmith to place his squadrons emblem and name on the coins. He then distributed these coins to the members of his squadron. Then, one pilot placed his coin in a pouch and place it around his neck. A few days later, his plane crashed and he landed on the enemy’s camp. He was then captured by the Germans.
The Germans took all his belongings, including his wallet and his identification cards. But, they did not take the pouch. He was taken to a small French town. Luckily, he was able to escape the his captors. He stumbled into a French outposts. There are many saboteurs in the area so the French soldiers thought that he is a saboteur. They are about to execute him when he showed them his coin. They then recognized that he is from US air force. The French soldiers contacted their American allies to confirm the identity of the soldier. When the Americans confirmed that the soldier is part of the US air force, the soldier was spared from execution and he was sent back to America. Because the coin saved the life of the young soldier, more and more soldiers started to carry their challenge coins with them.
The use of challenge coins became popular during the World War II. The 107th Infantry who was deployed to fight the Nazi in France decide to produce specialized coins to verify their soldiers’ identity. These coins contained the emblem of their squadron and the date the coins were produced. These coins help prevent infiltration because soldiers are asked to present their coin during meetings with spies and undercover soldiers.
In 1951, Colonel William Quinn, commonly known as Buffalo Bill, had some coins made for his 17th Infantry Regiment in 1951. Now, during these times, the coins are not just used to confirm identity. These coins are also used for establishing camaraderie amongst military men through challenging. In a bar, a soldier initiates a challenge by drawing his coin. If the person that he challenged did not bring his coin, he must buy the challenger a round of drinks. But, if the soldier challenged can present his military coin, then the challenger should buy him a round of drinks. This game is fun and it promotes brotherhood and camaraderie among military service men.
Uses of Military Coins
Challenge coins are typically used to honor military men and to commemorate special missions and assignments. But, these days, you can use these challenge coins for just about anything. You can use these coins as:
1. Fundraiser Tokens
If you’re a fundraiser, you can design and produce special coins that contain your organization’s logo and cause. You can distribute this to your donors, sponsors, and supporters during fundraising events.
2. Corporate Rewards
If you’re looking for ways to reward performing employees then you should try customized coins. You can use these coins to reward your top employees and encourage them to keep up their good work. You can even give away gold and silver coins to employees who have been working with your company for over ten years.
3. Boys Scouts and Girls Scouts
Scout masters usually use customized coins to reward the exceptional girl scouts and boy scouts. Scout coins come in different colors and designs. Some scouts trade their coins with other scouts for fun.
4. Promotional Tools
If you’re looking for new ways to promote your products and services, try challenge coins. You can place your product logo on these coins and give it away to potential customers. These coins are cheap yet classy, so using these coins as promotional tools will leave a lasting impression on potential clients and could potentially improve your company’s reputation and increase your sales.
Military coins bring strong feelings of pride among military men. But, these coins are not for soldiers anymore. You can use these coins as wedding favors, party favors, reward, or marketing tools. To learn more, visit ChallengeCoins4Less.com.