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A Second Gold Sovereign Awarded Presented by the BSI

A Second Gold Sovereign Awarded Presented by the BSI

“… the highest of honours …”

– A Study in Scarleti (STUD)

Peter E. Blau, right, presents the Gold Sovereign Award to Michael F. Whelan at the 2017 BSI Dinner – Photo by Will Walsh

Minutes before the conclusion of this year’s Bakers Street Irregulars annual dinner on January 6, 2017, Peter E. Blau, the 13th Garrideb, stood up and proclaimed “Eminent Bodymaster, I claim urgency!” and approached the podium to make a special presentation to Michael F. Whelan.

In recognition of Whelan chairing his 20th dinner as the Wiggins (leader) of the Baker Street Irregulars, Blau presented him with the Gold Sovereign Award in honor of his service to the group over these many years.

BSI members receive a shilling coin as a symbol of their membership. Those BSI members who have done “extraordinary devotion to the cause beyond the call of duty,” have been awarded the Two Shilling Award (two of our fellow Garridebs – Blau and Robert S. Katz – have been honored with this award). A gold Sovereign is the equivalent of 20 shillings.

This is only the second time that the Gold Sovereign has been awarded by the BSI. The other occasion was at the 1973 dinner where Commissionaire Julian Wolff was the first to be so honored. Mr. Blau’s comments to approach the podium were the same words as BSI member Jim Iraldi proclaimed at the 1973 dinner. You can read (and listen to the presentation) HERE.

In conversation with Blau, I have learned that the sovereign presented to Whelan was dated 1888. This ties in nicely with A Scandal In Bohemia, which took place in 1888 and where Holmes was given a sovereign by The Woman.

Julian Wolff, A Silver Dollar and A Gold Sovereign

Julian Wolff, A Silver Dollar and A Gold Sovereign

“Do you know anything of the commissionaire?” – The Adventure of The Naval Treaty (NAVA) Julian Wolff, M.D. – BSI Commissionaire 1961 – 1986 There are several members of our group that had the pleasure of knowing Dr. Julian Wolff, the Commissionaire of the Baker Street Irregulars from 1961 until he stepped down in 1986. There… Continue Reading

The 2016 Silver Blaze (Southern Division) 2 Guinea Banknote

The 2016 Silver Blaze (Southern Division) 2 Guinea Banknote

“‘Then he paid up his two guineas…“ – The Hound of the Baskervilles (HOUN) In 1952, Thomas L. Stix, Sr. started the New York Silver Blaze at the Jamaica Raceway in honor of the story of the same title by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The race was an annual (well, almost) race at various tracks around… Continue Reading

Sherlockian Appointed to Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee

Sherlockian Appointed to Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee

“What do you think of such a commission as that?” – The Advenuture of the Engineer’s Thumb (ENGR) A rather famous Sherlockian (more noted for his previous career) was recently appointed to fill a vacancy on the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC). From the U.S.Mint’s January 19, 2017 press release: The United States Mint is pleased… Continue Reading

The 1949 Inaugural Medal of BSI Member Harry S Truman

The 1949 Inaugural Medal of BSI Member Harry S Truman

“The leader alone retained his stern, impressive expression.” – A Study In Scarlet (STUD) The polls indicated that a Presidential candidate would win the general election handily. However, when the votes were tabulated, the other candidate was victorious. Are we talking about the recent 2016 Presidential election? No, we are referring to the 1948 Presidential… Continue Reading

Meet the Garridebs: William Pavey Meskan

Meet the Garridebs: William Pavey Meskan

“A little later the chief constable sent for me.” – The Adventure of the Golden Pince-Nez (GOLD) It’s been just over a year since we last published one of our “Meet the Garridebs” features. Let’s take this opportunity to meet the 12th Garrideb, William Pavey Meskan, aka Beau. One of our founding charter members (Syracusean,… Continue Reading

The Presidential Inaugural Medals of BSI Member Franklin D. Roosevelt

The Presidential Inaugural Medals of BSI Member Franklin D. Roosevelt

“… whose massive head and resolute expression marked him as leader. “ – A Study In Scarlet (STUD) We have discussed before how President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was awarded an honorary membership in the Baker Street Irregulars in 1942, which can be read HERE. With the 2017 President Inauguration a few days away, this seems like a… Continue Reading