A large, heavy participant medal is a glorious and lasting piece of history made to commemorate the 1926 World Figure Skating Championships, held in Berlin, Germany, for men and pairs. The 1926 Championships featured many of the greats who helped to shape and advance the sport: men’s world champion Willy Böckl and pairs world champions Andrée Joly and Pierre Brunet to name just a few. And in the not-well-known facts category, Sonja Henie placed fifth in the pairs event with partner Arne Lie. The medal, likely given only to competitors and event officials, has weathered remarkably well over the past 94 years, looking nearly as bright and lustrous today as it must have all those years ago in Berlin.
The exceptional design and production value of the medal are evidenced in the detail. A central male figure skater in a classic pose commands attention on the outdoor ice surface, skating with apparent unbridled abandon. A mountain range in the distance adds perspective to the scene. One can almost imagine the crisp, wintry day it might have been and how the skater would have savored the freedom of skating in the open air.
A central male figure skater in a classic pose commands attention on the outdoor ice surface, skating with apparent unbridled abandon.
Above the skater is an illustration of the club pin of Berliner Schlittschuh Club, host of the 1926 World Championships. To the left and right of the club name is ornamental foliage enclosed in a shape that follows the contour of the pin illustration. Below the skater, in a unique, of-the-era typestyle, are the event name, date, and location: “Weltmeisterschaft, 12-14 Febr. 1926, Berlin.” Ornamental foliage also adorns the bottom of the medal. With a graceful arc at the top, the impressive medal is approximately 2-3/8″ x 3-3/4″ in size (6 cm x 9.5 cm) and would have been made in a limited number.
The medal shown here is from the estate of Walter and Ludowika (née Eilers) Jakobsson, Olympic champions in 1920, Olympic silver medalists in 1924, and three times World Champions (1911, 1914, and 1923). Walter Jakobsson served as a judge at the 1926 World Championships. Other pieces having belonged to the Jakobssons are detailed in these blog posts: 1910 World Championships, 1912 World Championships, 1928 European Championships, 1932 World Championships, 1938 European Championships, and 1952 European Championships.
Enjoy At the Berliner Eispalast. 1926.
1926 World Championships Gallery
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