Medals of 1898 Trans Mississippi & International Exposition of Omaha

The award medals at the 1898 Trans-Mississippi & International Exposition in Omaha, Nebraska were produced in several medal variants: bronze, silver, and gold being the main ones. Also there were medals for Highest Award and Honorable Mention.

Below is a copy of Bureau of Awards Report of the General Secretary of the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition in 1899 summary the count of the medals issued during the Omaha exposition.


Hon. James M. Woolworth, Omaha, Chairman.
John E. Utt, Commissioner Commercial Club, Omaha, Asst. Chairman.

This bureau was ably conducted and the awards made upon reports of jurors were eminently satisfactory to the army of exhibitors. A jury of 3 persons examined, tested, and formulated a report, giving points of merit of each exhibit entered for competitive award. This report was examined and approved by the Bureau of Awards, assisted by the man- ager of the department. About 100 persons served the Exposition as members of the many juries, and the list comprised names of men, experts in their lines, from all parts of the United States and Canada. Medals and Diplomas were awarded as follows:

Medals issued at the  Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition
Medals issued at the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition

Despite the differences in the numbers produced, all medal variants are highly sought after by collectors due to their historical significance and artistic merit. Below we have examples of the bronze and gold medals. If you have an example of the silver award medal you would share please send for us to include here.

1898 award medal Trans Mississippi exposition in Omaha

Bronze Award Medal


by S.D. CHILDS & CO. ENGRAVERS CHICAGO. nice chocolate color. 2.5 inches diameter.

bronze award medal 1898 expo

Bronze Award Medal


Unawarded medal. Reverse: honor wreath

1898 Gold Medal Omaha

Gold Award Medal 1898 Omaha – 582 Issued


Nice gold plated award medal with the same design as bronze. Reads TRANS – MISSISSIPPI AND INTERNATIONAL EXPOSITION with 1898 at center bottom. U.S.A. just above the date.

Gold award medal 1898 exposition

Gold Award Medal 1898


Nicely engraved with Gold Medal….. Awarded To…….
Reverse: honor wreath with S.D. CHILDS & CO. ENGRAVERS, CHICAGO below, engraved within “Gold Medal / FOR , Awarded to

At the very bottom: S.D. CHILDS & CO. ENGRAVERS CHICAGO

The Trans Mississippi International Exposition of 1898 and the concurrent Indian Congress were held in Omaha, Nebraska from June 1, 1898 through November 1, 1898. The Exposition showcased the developed West from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Coast. Business and community leaders from the 24 states and territories lying west of the Mississippi River envisioned the Trans Mississippi Exposition as a way to revitalize the regional economy and to show that the West had recovered from the financial panic of 1893.

During the four months of the Exposition, over 2,600,000 people came to view it’s 4,062 exhibits. The exhibits feature social achievements, economic productivity, and community growth of the western region. The Exposition stretched from 24th Street east to Sherman Avenue and from Pinkney Street north to Ames Avenue. Overall, it covered about 108 city blocks. The grand buildings of the Exposition no longer exist because of the poor quality of the construction materials. Most of the structures were built using green wood and plaster in order to keep the cost of these immense buildings down.