Monday, May 3, 2010

Update about a Collection Item

Last week we featured this item, found in the Museum in 2008:

A reader wrote in with some information about the artifact, sending us a short article from The Financier, New York edition, from May 19, 1917:

Liberty Loan Buttons Arrive in NY

“Button! Button! Who's got the Button?” This is the game that every man woman and child in the United States is expected to play for the next two weeks. On the seriousness with which all the players regard the game will depend to a large extent America's success in the World War.

The button is the Libery Loan badge which will be given to every subscriber to a Liberty bond. The game will be to see how many persons wear the button on June 15.

The first installment of thirty thousand of these buttons out of the two hundred and fifty thousand which the Treasury Department has alloted [sic] to the Second Federal Reserve District, in which New York City is located, arrived from Washington this morning. The headquarters of the Liberty Loan Committee have received strict orders from the Federal authorities to exercise the greatest care to prevent these badges being worn by any but bona fide subscribers to the loan.

The Liberty Loan button is blue with a red circle in the center. From a distance it appears not unlike a campaign button, except that instead of the face of the candidate, there is inscribed the head and shoulders of the Statue of Liberty with her flaming torch On the outer border of blue there is written in white letters, “Get Behind the Government.” The red center contains the inscription “The Liberty Loan of 1917.” The man or woman who wears the button has enrolled his name on the loan for Liberty's Roll of Honor. Get a button.

So, it appears someone in 97 Orchard Street - or a friend or family member - purchased a Liberty Loan in June, 1917.

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