1897 Olten


Actual 45 mm size by Huguenin, Le Locle

Obverse.

Helvetia allegory of the Confederacy, dressed in a delicate elegant gown that leaves her in a state of nature of her beauteous back. Her alluring frock dances uninhibitedly with the gentle breeze, and she adorned a simple unornamented crown, helping to braid her mane. She is bare of feet, walking on soft pastures towards a uniformed soldier.

Of dignified stature, she does the schwurhand, solemn oath gesture in traditional depictions of the Rütlischwur, with her left hand pointing to the heavens, and her right places with lovingly grace onto the fore-stock chamber of the soldier’s rifle.

In gladsome acceptance of this most welcoming gesture, mirthful grin on his wrinkly bearded face, he strode on with a gratified disposition, having received the conduit of blessings from heavens through her. With renewed vigor, both staunch leather gloved hands grasps on his most faithful rifle. He glanced much obliged at her with a smile and received in return, a tenderly knowing look from her.

Over the peaceful yonder of grandeur River Aare, seen of the olden townhouses of Olten with its famed covered bridge. The spire of the Tower of Olten raises above all, and far distances the wooded mountain Wisenberg presides over the many years past and future, the township and along these heavily forested lands.

Inscriptions.

Herz und Hand Dem Vaterland – Heart and Hand for The Fatherland

Reverse.

Stylized rays brilliantly in all directions from the venerable Cross, allegory of the Confederacy, depicting the everlasting unity and brotherhood of man, and the most cherished virtues of independence and free liberties.

A couplet of heraldry blazons, of one representing the three Fir Trees of Olten and the other displaying the proud emblem colors of the canton of Solothurn. Laying upon a X-cross of sharpshooters’ guns, marked by the stock of past ages, the flintlock musket, and of present times, Perkussionsstutzer rifle.

Nestling by, a pair of lustrously ornate laurel branches of flora leaves for the champions of the shot, over the instruments of compete, and the heraldic shields of the venue.

Background.

At the end of the 3rd century, a fortification was built at the bridgeheads. This fortress was abandoned in the 4th century, and later replaced by a larger castle, comparable to late Roman fortresses protecting crossings of the Aar at Solothurn and Brugg.

The medieval settlement was built on the foundations of the Roman castle. It is first mentioned in 1201, as Oltun. It was in possession of the counts of Frohburg in the 13th century, passing to Kyburg in 1377 and to Habsburg in 1384. Olten passed under the administration of Basel in 1407, which invested in infrastructure, which was however destroyed in fires in 1411 and 1422. Basel lost interest in rebuilding the town again after the 1422 fire, and sold the settlement to Solothurn in 1426.

Throughout the medieval period, Olten was little more than a fortified bridgehead with some services (blacksmiths, taverns). Olten lost its city rights in 1653 as punishment for its support of the rebels in the Swiss Peasant War. This resulted in a lasting tradition of resistance against authority in Olten, and the town welcomed as liberators the French troops in the 1798 invasion. In 1814, Solothurn suppressed another rebellion of Olten patriots against the Swiss Restoration.

In celebration of the Schützenfest held in 1897 in the town of Olten in the Canton of Solothurn.

SCHWEIZ SCHÜTZENFEST

HISTORY OF SCHWEIZ SCHÜTZENFEST

SCHÜTZENFEST SCHÜTZENMEDAILLEN

  

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