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Eisenhower in Acapulco: An American-Mexican Numismatic Memento

Eisenhower in Acapulco: An American-Mexican Numismatic Memento Featured in Stack's Bowers February Colelctors Choice Online Auction

By Jeremy BostwickSenior Numismatist & Cataloger, Stack’s Bowers ……
The post-World War II period saw an increase in American influence in global affairs, with President Dwight D. Eisenhower at the helm during his two terms in office. Having played a vital role in the allied victory in Europe the decade prior, Eisenhower provided a steady hand in this era when technology brought together a world that had so recently been severely fractured. Further advancements in aviation made visiting other world leaders faster, easier, and more reliable; as a bit of trivia of the era, the call sign “Air Force One” was first utilized at the beginning of Eisenhower’s presidency in 1953.

These factors, by the later years of Eisenhower’s second term, resulted in what was billed as the “Flight to Peace” goodwill tour–an 11-nation, 19-day whirlwind of diplomacy that covered some 22,000 miles. In all, Eisenhower would make 16 international trips during his eight years as president. One such trip that likely carried a bit less fanfare was a visit with Adolfo López Mateos, the recently inaugurated president of Mexico, in February 1959.

Based in Acapulco, the meeting between the two presidents involved conversations about the cotton trade, the vast disparity in the standards of living between the two nations, the rapidly growing population of Mexico, and economic investments in Mexico by American businesses. Though various photos mark this conference, an item in our February Collectors Choice Online (CCO) auction celebrates the event in a numismatic context and is quite likely unique in its manufacture.

Utilizing the massive gold 50 Pesos as its host, this engraved memento commemorates the state visit of President Eisenhower with his Mexican counterpart. Though the reverse retains its normal eagle motif, the obverse has been completely shaved down, presenting a blank canvas to the engraver who skillfully etched the following in four lines:


Dwight Eisenhower

A Mateos

II – 19 – 59

The top line, curving in a semi-circular arrangement around the upper border, indicates the location of the meeting–the Hotel Pierre Marques in Acapulco, Guerrero–while the bottom line, similarly curving around the lower border, relates the timing of the event.

What is even more remarkable is the manner in which each president’s signature is rendered, with the engraver mimicking the exact penmanship of the leaders in the two central lines reading horizontally.

For additional use in wearing, a clasp was added at the top. Given the numerous collecting interests for an item like the present piece (collectors of the 50 Pesos series, aficionados of presidential memorabilia, and those who seek out engraved coin art), this memento from the final year of the 1950s should evoke a great deal of fanfare.

To view our upcoming auction schedule and future offerings, please visit StacksBowers.com where you may register and participate in this and other forthcoming sales.

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We are always seeking coins, medals, and paper money for our future auctions, and are currently accepting submissions for our June Collector’s Choice Online (CCO) auction as well as our Official Auction of the ANA World’s Fair of Money in August. If you would like to learn more about consigning, whether a singular item or an entire collection, please contact one of our consignment directors today and we will assist you in achieving the best possible return on your material.

Stack's Bowers
Stack's Bowershttps://stacksbowers.com/
Stack's Bowers Galleries conducts live, internet, and specialized auctions of rare U.S. and world coins and currency and ancient coins, as well as direct sales through retail and wholesale channels. The company's 90-year legacy includes the cataloging and sale of many of the most valuable United States coin and currency collections to ever cross an auction block — The D. Brent Pogue Collection, The John J. Ford, Jr. Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, The Joel R. Anderson Collection, The Norweb Collection, The Cardinal Collection, The Sydney F. Martin Collection, and The Battle Born Collection — to name just a few. World coin and currency collections include The Pinnacle Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection of World Gold Coins, The Kroisos Collection, The Alicia and Sidney Belzberg Collection, The Salton Collection, The Wa She Wong Collection, and The Thos. H. Law Collection. The company is headquartered in Costa Mesa, California with galleries in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia. Offices are also located in New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia, Hong Kong, Paris, and Vancouver.

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