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Mr. Tlee,

It would help, identification if you posted a picture of the other (obverse?) side.

Also coin catalogues will help. (the library should have a copy).

SLAG.

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It would also help if you put your general location in your profile, old coins found in the UK are generally different than ones from Australia, The US, the Middle East etc. It looks like some sort of commemorative coin to me. Wonder if it is an earlier version of the Alabama Forge Council? Like the Alabama Blacksmith Association.

Here is an interesting Wikipedia article about Blacksmith Tokens (mostly from Canada) I remember hearing about them a long time ago but can't recall where. Thanks for posting this.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blacksmith_token

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Did you contact Birmingham Alabama, USA and ask what went on in 1912?   There is a huge statue of Vulcan displayed at the 1904 Worlds Fair from Birmingham Alabama that is used as a symbol of the city.

A.B.A.: American Bar Association, Alabama Bar Association, American Booksellers Association (founded 1900),...

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IDFCW:  So all those items sold in Arkansas with a razorback on them are just for a meat packers association?

I know that the American Bladesmiths Association wasn't founded back them.  I might check "Practical Blacksmithing"  to see if they mention a smithing group back then; but I don't think they would go to the trouble of striking commemoratives for a get together.

TLEE1971; I'm sure there are people up on the history of Birmingham Alabama that might be able to help; I notice both a Birmingham Historical Society and a Jefferson County Historical Commission listed.  Have you checked with them?

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What does the reverse look like?  Blank or some other lettering or symbol?  The blacksmith on the coin may refer to Birmingham's steel industry.  We also don't know if this refers to Birmingham, AL or Birmingham, England.  It could be either.

Also, because it is not money I believe the correct numismatic term is a "token." 

The Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association was held in Milwaukee, WI in 1912.  So, one less candidate for ABA.  Some research in the Birmingham, AL newspapers of 1912 might show who was in town then.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand." 

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Just because there is a blacksmith on it doesn't mean it had anything to do with blacksmiths so asking for help identifying it on a blacksmith forum isn't the place to look. 

It's a coin, token, medallion, etc. Were I trying to identify it I'd ask on a numismatist (coin collectors) forum. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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It has same thing on both sides.. Well since my grandfather worked in the industry I assumed it would be something a blacksmith forum would know, and it never hurts to get others opinions I've talked with several " coin collectors " that have no idea what it could be and refer me back to blacksmiths...   Thanks for the info.

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Dear Tlee,

A  couple more thoughts:  It may be something that was struck and handed out to various groups congregating in Birmingham and the dies were changed for the group and year.  I would try to chase down Birmingham history in 1912 of what groups were meeting there and see if you can find one with the initials ABA.  The B could even be for Birmingham.  It could even be something like Amalgamated Birmingham Associations.  I'd check with the Birmingham Historical Society (or whatever name they use) and ask them.  I would specifically ask about the use of the image of a blacksmith to represent the City of Birmingham.

BTW, can you tell what sort of metal it is struck in?  If it is heavy it may be pewter or lead.  If it is light it may be some sort of white or pot metal.  It's black color is probably oxidation that indicates that it was originally silvery colored.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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It's heavy for sure.  I can't tell if it is silver looking or more copper. I've emailed the historical societies and I am still awaiting on a reply. I've read all 1912 history for every Birmingham everywhere..still no luck..  I'll let everyone know what it is, if and when,  I find out.. thank you 

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Are you familiar with the history of military challenge coins? It could be a similar... type of thing?

Basically, a physical identification of a good standing in a club, group or community of sort... would be given in recognition of deeds or reputation, and used as proof thereof.

19044571.jpg

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First: check it with a magnet!   Birmingham was famous, (both in US and UK), for their iron/steel industry.  (The Vulcan statue in Birmingham Alabama weighs over 100000 pounds of cast iron for instance.)

Anybody at the University of Alabama at Birmingham's history department have any suggestions of who to ask?

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Magnet don't stick.  I'm still waiting on a reply from the history's societies.. I've heard of the military challenge coins and I do think its some kind of comemorative coin whether as group or individual is the question.. i wish I could get a really good picture of it so you can see that it almost looks like copper under the patina .

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Copper is definitely a possibility as it's easy to strike and fairly cheap. 

I note that a number of Universities in Birmingham Alabama have collections of local news papers that include the year 1912.  Are you ever in that area?   I believe the Library of Congress in Washington DC also has a few on microfilm if that is closer to you.

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