Samuel Appleton Medal for the Massachusetts Horticultural Society

Collection Type

  • Jewelry






This bronze medal shows a bas-relief profile of an older man with sideburns on the recto side, surrounded by an inscription and a date in Roman numerals.


Descriptive Terms

bronze (metal)
Medal, Prize
Unidentified Metal
Medal, Prize


Samuel Appleton gave $1,000 to the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 1845 to "be invested in a permanent fund." They invested his gift in the Hospital Life Insurance Company, "the income of which will be dispensed in Gold and Silver Medals, to be denominated the Appleton Medals." Appleton replied that "this disposition of the money, were it less flattering, would meet with my entire approbation, and as it is, the Society will please to accept my best thanks for perpetuating my name in Medals of Gold and Silver."-The New-England Farmer, (1846, Vol. 24: 323). The Horticultural Society rewarded gold, silver and (later) bronze medals to their members for achievements from 1846 until the voted to discontinue the medals in 1924. Francis N. Mitchell, who was working as a medalist, engraver, and die sinker in Boston from the 1840s to the 1870s received the commission for Samuel Appleton's profile. For his work on the Appleton medal he charged the Horticultural Society $125.00 in August, 1848. He was awarded the highest honor in medal making by the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association in 1848.


Heads: "Samuel Appleton/MDCCCXLV", Mitchell F" under the left shoulder of Appleton bust. Tails: "Massachusetts Horticulture Society". (embossed, part of cast design)
"Mitchell F" (embossed, part of cast design)
"Massachusetts Horticultural Society" (embossed, part of cast design)


Mitchell, Francis N. (Sculptor)

Credit Line

Gift of William Sumner Appleton

Accession Number



1845 (original design date)