A trio of medals from the Nor Cal Division’s 1952/1953 season won by Fran Carter.  A silver medal for Women’s Intermediate Foil and gold in Women’s Intermediate Foil Team and Women’s Handicap Foil.  I’m not sure how they ran their handicap tournaments back then, whether it was a scoring handicap for more advanced fencers or limited target area.  Could have been any number of things.  But this was pre-electric foil so the trick of wearing a t-shirt over a lamé with smaller or larger holes cut out, depending on the experience of the wearer, wouldn’t work.  And can I just say, sometimes getting these medals to pose for a nice portrait is just impossible.  You’d think they’d be happy for the attention, but no.  Leaning over all crazy, won’t stay in one place.  Have they been day drinking?  Uncooperative little monsters.  They are shiny though.  I’ll give them that.

I also got out the magnifier to read the stamps at the bottom of the silver medal, assuming them to be a maker’s mark.  Sure enough, the upper stamp reads, “Van Wormer/Rodrigues” and the lower, “Sterling”.  A little internet sleuthing ensued and I learned that Van Wormer & Rodrigues were jewelry makers in San Francisco who incorporated in 1929 and dissolved in 1977.  What was the per unit cost on these?  It couldn’t have been outrageous, as the division changed the medal design every season.  So did the SoCal division.  When is that going to come back into fashion?

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