Continuing on with the theme of guidelines of issue of US Medals:
Another of the more popular encountered manufacturers are Lordship Industries of New York. Formerly named “His Lordship Industries Inc”, and changed later to His Lordship Products (HLP) was founded in 1948 gaining its Government contract in 1959 manufacturing cap badges for the Women’s US Navy Service. Awarded the Medal of Honor contract 1963 and by 1969 had produced some 600 for all 3 services. HLP made the original Republic of Vietnam Service Medal, the Commendation medals for all services, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Service Medals for all services, the Air Force Cross, Navy Cross and the Purple Heart plus other service medals. HLP started stamping their hallmark on the suspender brooch circa 1967 and by the time they lost their contract in 1996 were using the hallmark LIGI as they had changed their company name to Lordship Industries circa 1974.
I have yet to find a medal manufactured during the time period of Lordship Industries from 1958 to 1996 with a hallmarked code number?
Marks are: (Please note the following dates are approximate):
HLP 1964-67. HLP-GI 8/1967-4/1975. LI-GI 1/1975-1/1986. LIGI circa 1986 to 1996.(Lordship industries lost their government contract circa 1996).H.L.P. has been seen stamped on the rim of the medal and HLP-GI on the suspender.
Rim marked Vietnam Service medal H.L.P. Lordship Industries 1965-67 and right Naval Reserve Service crimp marked HLP-GI 67-75.
12mm crimp suspender marked LI-GI for Lordship Industries on the Army Achievement Medal. This medal was awarded from 1981 onwards. Medals made by Lordship Industries marked LI-GI were dated from circa 1975 to 1986 so this dates the medal circa 1981-1986.
Also seen on the internet are medal brooches marked Lordship NY-GI seen on a Joint Service Achievement Medal (established circa 1983) with a 9mm brooch? This isn’t one I’ve seen before so not sure of its authenticity?
9mm crimp suspender marked LIGI circa 1986-1996.
Current issue Southwest Asia Service for Gulf War marked LIGI. (Actual manufacture June 1991). 9mm crimp. The same medal is also available on a 12mm crimp.
Some single medals and sets can also be mounted on a clutch back fitting.
The current medals issued also have an Anodized or Shellac finish which makes them look like they have a varnished appearance which can also be seen on medals manufactured during the 1970s to 80s but not as dark an appearance around the high points or lettering as the more modern issued ones. Older issue medals pre 1960s will have a non-varnish type appearance an example being this WW2 Asiatic Pacific Service medal.
This Coast Guard medal dates to circa 1970s to 1980’s issue and has a varnished finish. Other medals available which can have a varnished finish are the USAF Combat Readiness, Meritorious Service, Navy Expeditionary and Coast Guard Arctic medal.
Modern Issue Prisoner of war medal marked G27 for Graco Industries. Note the dark edge to the lettering which is common on most recent issued medals especially service medals due to the manufacturing process.
European, Middle East and Africa Campaign Medal (EMEA) both with crimp suspenders. Top one is 9mm, bottom is 12mm which is the older of the two. Same medals showing the planchet (side) of the medal and note the thickness of the stamp. The “thicker” medal can sometimes denote a US Mint issued medal. The Top medal above is Graco GI manufacture and is thicker than the lower which is possibly Medallic Art Co, NYC.
Two Navy Expert Rifleman Medals by unknown manufacturers. Notice the difference in the ribbon Green stripe thickness and the stamping anomaly in the lower medal made circa 1972.
Another example of difference in manufacture in these two Vietnam service medals. Top medal is by HLP circa 1965-67, bottom is Williams and Anderson circa 1969-70. (Vietnam service medal awarded from 1965).