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Feb 16
Medal Metals: Bronze, Silver, and Gold

​Below is a post from The Archivist's Pencil, the blog of the Archives of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto. 

The Olympics are here again! During this time, 2,952 athletes from around the world are competing for bronze, silver, and gold medals in 102 events in 15 disciplines such as curling, figure skating, and ski jumping. 

Olympians have been receiving medals since the first modern Olympics in 1896, but the bronze, silver, and gold tradition started in 1904. The top competitors in the ancient Olympic games received an olive wreath. 

Thinking about the different medal metals made us wonder what we had in the archives made of the three. Turns out there were some interesting finds!

Let's start with third place bronze: 

This cross and chain came from the estate of Cardinal Carter. Not too much is known about it other than the fact that it has been corroding. We hope that storage in a climate-controlled environment will mitigate the damage!

Now for second place silver:

Two silver trowels presented to Cardinal McGuigan for laying cornerstones for St. Joseph's High School in Etobicoke in 1947 and St. Michael's College in 1935.

And in first place, gold!

A pair of 10k gold Birks cufflinks belonging to Archbishop Pocock with his coat of arms.

For a wider selection of images from the archives, please check out the original blog post at


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