Navy Challenge Coin: History and Meaning behind Navy Coins


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Serving in the military, one has a lot to dedicate, and the experiences that an individual gains are always remembered and cherished for years. And there is a lot of ways to commemorate those rich experiences that you gain as a member of the military. One of the ways is through a Navy challenge coin.

Navy honor coins are valuable items holding deep significance to both the presenter and the receiver. Many people who receive challenge coins preserve them carefully with them and pass it on to other family members later on.

So, what are Navy challenge coins, and why are they so important? Let’s find out.

What is a Navy Challenge Coin?

Navy challenge coins are specially designed coins to be used in the Navy for some type of recognition. It’s equivalent to a military challenge coin but for the Navy. Usually, they are presented to individuals to signify that they belong to a group. They are also presented on special occasions to recognize an individual for his or her contributions and achievements.

Navy challenge coins are a bit larger than the currency coin and are specially designed and quite detailed with images and information about the event that it is presented on. However, they are always small enough to fit in the palm or slip into the pocket of the recipient.

Most of the time Navy challenge coins are round, but these days, they can be made of any shape and size. The imagery displayed is often Navy insignia with sometimes including the name of a unit or base or mascot.

They are mostly made of metals like bronze and brass. Though sometimes they can also be made of gold or silver.

History of Navy Challenge Coins

The exact origin of navy challenge coins can’t be traced which makes it all the more interesting. No one is sure when was the first Navy coin used but everyone agrees that they had been in the Navy for fifty to a hundred years. There are no written records about the beginning of this tradition in the Navy.

However, there are different stories and they suggest different beginnings. One of them links the use of challenge coins to WWI, but others think that they started as late as the Vietnam war. Some others still suggest that Navy coins were passed around during the US civil war.

Regardless of its history, the significance that it holds, make Navy challenge coins extremely precious items. The awarding of a challenge coin can really build morale and a sense of brotherhood among the members, and they give the Navy members something to look forward to in difficult situations.

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Collecting Navy Challenge Coins

If collecting Navy challenge coins is of interest to you, there are several ways that you can start collecting. One way is if you are a Navy official. If you serve in the Navy, getting a coin won’t be that hard. Through hard work and dedication, you could earn a coin for yourself.

Another way is to have a lookout for them and become a collector. Many veterans and civilians spend time collecting these valuable pieces. You can also find some older coins at the auction. But given the increase in popularity that it has got over the years as a hobby, the chances of finding or affording them at auctions have become less. Still another way of collecting Navy honor coins is to design your own. Many companies design these coins for non-military purposes. The best part would be that the coin you will build will be unique and you can utilize them to signify something and

Raushan Kumar
A Cook, Software analyst & Blogger.


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