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Opening of Crystal Palace, Sydenham 1854

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1854 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Adams, George Gammon, born 1821 - died 1898 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silvered electrotype under glass cover

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This roundel (silvered electrotype) is cast of the obverse of a commemorative medal, and is made by George Gammon Adams. It commemorates the Opening of Crystal Palace, Sydenham 1854.
After its removal from Hyde Park, the great glass building was recreated at Sydenham. It was enlarged, divided into courts and a barrel roof added. There was also additionally a concert hall and menageries. The Queen opened the building on 10 June 1854 in the presence of some 40,000 people.

George Gammon Adams (b. 1821-1898) was a portrait sculptor and medallist. He designed and exhibited prize medals for the Great Exhibition. In 1852 he was chosen to model the death mask of Wellington. One of his public monuments is the 'Napier' statue in Trafalgar square.

The roundel was among the items given to the Museum by I. D. Adams, the daughter of George Gammon Adams, in 1980. In total, 196 items were included in the Adams gift, which consisted of many models for medals as well as the busts and figurative sculpture. In most instances it is not possible to date conclusively the many models included in this gift.

Physical description

Conjoined heads of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert to left, he bareheaded, she crowned. Inscribed.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1854 (made)


Adams, George Gammon, born 1821 - died 1898 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Silvered electrotype under glass cover

Marks and inscriptions



Diameter: 6.4 cm

Object history note

Given by Miss I.D. Adams, daughter of George Gammon Adams in 1980.

Descriptive line

Roundel, silvered electrotype, commemorating the Opening of Crystal Palace, Sydenham 1854, Heads of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, by George Gammon Adams, England 1854

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Forrer, L. Biographical Dictionary of Medallists, I, London, 1904, p. 23
Brown, Lawrence. British Historical Medals 1837-1901 - Vol II, The Reign of Queen Victoria. London: 1987, cat.no. 2545


Coins & Medals; Sculpture; Royalty; Portraits


Sculpture Collection

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