On today’s date in 1985, the Canadian Numismatic Association (now the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association, or RCNA) closed its 32nd annual convention, which began in Regina, Sask., earlier that week.
The medal’s reverse design marked on the 100th anniversary of the 1885 Battle of Batoche, specifically “Northcote at Batoche 9 May 1885,” which was the date when the steamer Northcote – carrying some of General Frederick Middleton’s troops – was spotted by a Métis defensive line adjacent to the town.
Middleton’s plan was to encircle the enemy on May 9, as his main contingent advanced directly against the Métis. The Northcote was to steam by the Métis and unload 50 men at the opposite end of the town to complete the encirclement; however, while the armoured steamer fared well against the Métis’ small arms, it eventually lost its masts and smokestack after hitting the town’s ferry cable.
The Northcote drifted out of battle and down the South Saskatchewan River, but despite the setback, Middleton’s force eventually overcame the Métis after a four-day battle.
In 1985, two convention medals – one in bronze and another in silver – were issued by the Canadian Numismatic Association. With a weight of about 31.2 grams and a diameter of 38.9 millimetres, the medals had mintages of 375 pieces (bronze) and 175 pieces (silver).
A ROYAL HISTORY
The Canadian Numismatic Association was founded in 1950 by a group of Ottawa coin collectors.
Soon after, it began publishing The Canadian Numismatic Bulletin; however, this was replaced by its current publication, The Canadian Numismatic Journal, in 1956.
Two years earlier, the association hosted its first annual convention in Toronto.
Finally, in 2008, the Canadian Numismatic Association received its “Royal” designation to become the RCNA.