1854 -1864. A bronze medal, from the Sydney Exhibition demonstrating products of New South Wales, Sydney [Australia], in 1854. With a note from Frances Merewether to "P. Hewar, Q." (?) on Merewether's departure from "Cole (???) Rectory."
One side of the medal has the text "Products of New South Wales, Sydney, 1854 L.C.W." with images of harvesting, rural activities and of ships at the entrance to Port Jackson. The verso has an allegorical figure of New South Wales with a kangaroo, being introduced by Brittania to France, who is seated on a throne. On this side is the text: HIC LAURI DULCIOR USUS / L.C. WYON F / MDCCCLV.
Francis Lewis Shaw Merewether (18 March 1811 - 27 December 1899) was an English-born Australian politician. Merewether served as the Chancellor of the University of Sydney between 1862 and 1865. He was a non-elective member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 1851 to 1856, during which time he served as Postmaster-General (1851-52) and Auditor-General (1852-56), as well as acting Colonial Treasurer (1854-56). He served in the re-constituted Council from 1856 to 1861 and from 1861 to 1865, when he retired.
The accompanying note reads: "The enclosed Medal brought from Sydney" "This beautiful Medal and pleasing remembrance of past associations and parting kindness - presented by Frances Merewether Esq to P. [Hewar] Q on Saturday the 10th day of December 1864 - being the day Mr. Merewether left Cole [?] Rectory."
The success of this Exhibition in Sydney in 1854 led to its transfer to Paris in the following year, as the design of this medal demonstrates. In 1851, the Great Exhibition opened at the Crystal Palace, London, and ushered in an era which could well be termed "A Century of Exhibitions". Their popularity arose from their capacity to entertain and educate vast masses of people with exhibits gathered from all parts of the world; to spread industrial, manufacturing and scientific technologies, and to advertise the trading resources of the countries represented. Throughout the world, governments vied with each other in staging their exhibitions, and inviting exhibitors to participate in them. [excerpt from collection.maas.museum/object/301265]
Bronze medal, 2 7/8" diameter, 5/8" deep, house in a black leather covered wooden box with green velvet padding and hook latch. Box is 3 ¾ x 3 ¾", domed top, leather "spine" split, rubbed. Manuscript note has original folds, small splits at fold lines, 7 x 4.5".
The medal is held at the Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, NSW. [MAAS] as Object No. N1948. Item #26484