Only a few times in AINA’s history have extraordinary historic events inspired AINA to authorize the issuance of commemorative medals—Levi Eshkol and the Six-Day War (1967, the year of AINA’s birth), America’s Bicentennial (1976), and the 100th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration and the 50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Jerusalem (2017). Plus there were a couple of other occasions that gave birth to AINA medals—Rabbi David De Sola Pool (1970) and AINA’s 10th Anniversary (1977).
1967-8, Six-Day War. Obverse: Levi Eshkol, Prime Minister of Israel. Reverse: Map of Israel and the territories occupied during the war, the text "The Six-Day War 5-10 June 1967" above a Jewish candelabrum. Designed by Ralph Menconi. Bronze medal: Size 51 mm, weight 63 gm. Silver medal: Size?, weight 30 gm; 59mm 81gm Pure Silver 999. Gold medal: 28mm, 18.6 gm, 916 fine; 35mm, 30.6 gm of 0.9166 fine gold. Platinum medal: 23 mm, 9 gm. Some medals were made by Medallic Art Company, others by S.Kretschmer in Israel.
1970-1, David Da Sola Pool (1885-1970) served as Rabbi of "Shearith Israel", the Sephardic Congregation in New York. Obverse:. On the right, the de Sola Coat of Arms. On the rim, in large English letters: "David de Sola Pool", and in smaller letters: "Given reverently by Edna Feurth Lemle". Reverse: Above, a Hebrew inscription: "And I shall summon faithful witnesses". In the centre, the emblem of Shearith Israel Congregation, which was founded in 1654. The emblem shows three pillars which are "Justice, Righteousness and Truth", and an inscription "The world stands on" (the three pillars). Below, the date: "5414-1654" and an English inscription: "The Congregation Shearith Israel in the City of New York". Designed by Karen Worth. Bronze, 59mm, 100gm, 648 made. Silver, 59mm, 117gm, .935 fine, 285 made.
1976, American Bicentennial. Obverse: Bust of Washington to left, signature G WASHINGTON below. Around TO BIGOTRY NO SANCTION / TO PERSECUTION NO ASSISTANCE. Designed after bust by Houdon. Reverse: Logo of the American Israel Numismatic Association AINA, featuring a First Revolt Shekel, 1776 to left and 1976 to right. AMERICAN REVOLUTION above and BICENTENNIAL below. AINA logo designed by Nat Sobel. Bronze, 37.8 mm.
1977, Tenth Anniversary of the American Israel Numismatic Association. Obverse: Below and around the left rim, an ancient oil lamp. Its light symbolizes scholarship. In the center, an inscription in English: "10th Anniversary 1967-1977". On the rim to the right, an English inscription: "American-Israel Numismatic Association". Reverse: The A.I.N.A. seal (designed by Nat Sobel) surrounded by rushing waves, symbolizing feverish activity. Designed by Nathan Karp. Bronze, 59mm, 98gm, 2,496 made; 35mm, 23 gm, 150 made (presented to AINA Study Tour participants). Silver, 45mm, 48gm, .935 fine, 997 made. Gold, 45mm, 60gm, .917 fine, 1 made.
2017, 100th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, 50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Jerusalem, and 50th Anniversary of AINA. Obverse: Portrait of the United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour and the historic text from his letter sent on November 2, 1917 to Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild, a leader of the British Jewish community, for transmission to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland: “His Majesty’s Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national homeland for the Jewish people.” Reverse: Israeli Defense Forces liberating the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City on June 7th, 1967. Triumphant Brigadier General Shlomo Goren, later to become the Chief Rabbi of Israel, is shown holding a Torah and sounding the shofar (ram’s horn), as Israeli soldiers honor their comrades killed in combat. Rabbi Goren then recited “Le-shana HA-ZOT be-Yerushalayim ha-b’nuya, be-yerushalayim ha-atika!”—a portion of which is featured on the medal: “THIS YEAR IN A REBUILT JERUSALEM-5727.” The legend also includes: “REUNIFICATION OF JERUSALEM JUNE 7, 1967.” Edge: “AINA 50th ANNIVERSARY 1967-2017.” Designed by Mel Wacks and Heidi Wastweet, sculpted by Heidi Wastweet. Bronze, 2 ½”, 121 made; silver, 2 ½”, 4 oz., .999 fine, 52 made; gold-plated pure silver, 2 ½”, 4 oz., 12 made.