13th Anniversary, the Bar Mitzvah Year (1961); Bar & Bat Mitzvah
In 1961, in honor of the 13th Anniversary of Israel’s creation as a state (after almost 2000 years in exile since the Roman destruction of the prior Jewish state), numerous memorabilia were created.
A series of State Medals known as the Bar-Mitzvah Medals, was issued by the Israel Government Coins and Medals Corporation (the “IGCMC”) in bronze, silver and gold. These medals were struck in various sizes as follows:
Bronze: 59 mm.* Diameter
Silver: 59mm., 35mm, 19mm**
Gold: 27mm., 22mm, 19mm
* The reverse of the 59mm bronze medal exists in two varieties: Large tribes (the same as all other 1961 medals); and small tribes. The large tribes on the 59mm bronze medal is the rarer variety.
** The 19mm silver medal exists in three varieties:
(a) without mintmark on obverse.
(b) with mintmark letter 'kaf on obverse, at base of lectern.
(c) mounted on a keychain.
Since the original issues of these medals were sold out due to their popularity and suitability as Bar-Mitzvah gifts, the IGCMC re-issued the medal with large tribes in 1971 in 45mm bronze and silver with unlimited mintage.
History: See: www.theshekel.org/article_barmitzva_medal.html