Although more difficult these days considering all the fakes out there, browsing on eBay can still yield some great finds at even better prices!

I love putting in random search terms and digging through the results. Let's face it... a lot of people out there don't do homework on the items they list... As such, items are often misrepresented. While the majority of the time vendors think they have holy grail items and demand top dollar, SOMETIMES you find gems hidden in the rough!

A few weeks ago, I found myself bored at my computer and window shopping on eBay. I love local history, so I searched for terms specific to New York and my home town, Poughkeepsie, followed by "WWII" and or other wartime terms, such as the dates, "Army, Navy, USMC", etc.

Eventually, I stumbled upon a few "State of New York Aid to Civil Authorities" medals that I had never seen before! I clicked on a few of the listings and browsed through the photos. In general, I found these medals to be very attractive. What really caught my eye was that one example listed had a wartime "slot brooch" and a "Poughkeepsie 1945" bar! I decided then and there that I had to have it and was lucky in that the vendor was uneducated about the medal and accepted my LOW offer!

Initially, I thought this medal would have been issued en masse to Office of Civil Defense members... The thousands of plane spotters, black out and air raid wardens, fire fighters, etc... Considering the bar, I figured this medal would be available to any OCD member who lived in the city of Poughkeepsie, NY.

In actuality, I discovered that these medals were only available to New York National Guardsmen who were mobilized by civil authorities to handle riots, natural disasters, strikes, etc. Beyond that, these medal were not authorized until 1922 and initially they were private purchase from the Dieges & Clust Company after being approved by the state Adjutant General. As such, not all Guardsmen who qualified for these medals actually received them.

I also found out that the Poughkeepsie 1945 variant of this medal represents service during the interment of President Roosevelt at Hyde Park and was only authorized to be worn by Co's K and L of the 2nd Regiment of the New York National Guard!

In general, I am so thrilled with the medal itself and how I went about obtaining it. I got an amazing and rare piece of local and world history for only a few dollars!

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