George IV, City of London, Lord Mayor and Sheriff’s Committee, 1828 engraved gilt silver members’ badge.
67mm x 52mm, 30.1g, hallmarked 1826 with markers mark of C. Reilly.
Obverse with arms of the city and dated 10th November 1828. The reverse is engraved 'The Right Honorable - William Thompson M.P - Lord Mayor - Felix Booth Esqr - and - William Taylor Copeland Esqrs - Sheriff's'.
Extremely rare and a fascinating piece of history with both City of London and Artic exploration connections.
A similar example realised a hammer price of £3,000 in a DNW auction dated 24/06/2009 (lot 2077).
William Thompson (1792-1854) was an English businessman who was Lord Mayor of London and Member of Parliament.
Sir Felix Booth, 1st Baronet, FRS (1780-1850) was a wealthy British gin distiller and promoter of Arctic exploration, with various places in Nunavut, Canada, being named after him. With energy and drive, Felix expanded the family gin business by building a second distillery at Brentford on the River Thames just six miles from Hyde Park Corner and purchasing the neighbouring brewery of Hazard and Company, which he renamed as the Red Lion Brewery. By establishing a distillery at Edinburgh in Scotland, Felix Booth could then boast that he was the owner of the biggest distilling business in Great Britain. In 1828, now aged 48, he was elected a Sheriff of The City of London and of the County of Middlesex. Felix had now accumulated considerable wealth and decided to use his money to privately fund a voyage of exploration to the Arctic Seas, financing Captain Ross and his twenty two companions, equipped with stores and supplies to last several years, on a voyage on the paddle-steamer "Victory". They departed from Woolwich Reach on 23 May 1829 and returned to Hull, Yorkshire on 18 October 1833, having survived many exploratory experiences. Whilst Captain Ross had failed to open up a North-West passage, he had dramatically narrowed the field for future expeditions by mapping an area of over half-million square miles. He provided £17,000 for the expenses of the expedition, to which Captain Ross had added £3,000, and the result was an immense stride in the progress of geographical science. The grateful commander bestowed the name of his patron upon several of his discoveries on land and sea – Gulf of Boothia, Isthmus of Boothia, Continent of Boothia Felix, Felix Harbor, Cape Felix, and Sheriff's Harbor: the district with the islands, rivers, lakes, &c., extending to 74° N. latitude along the north-eastern portion of North America. The discovery most important to geographical science was that of the magnetic pole at 96° 46' 45" W. longitude, and 70° 5' 17". For Felix Booth's financial contribution to such an effort, he was knighted by the King and created a baronet "as a reward for his patriotism in fitting out at his sole cost an expedition in the endeavour to discover a North-West Passage".
William Copeland (1797-1868) was a British businessman and politician who served as Lord Mayor of London and a member of Parliament. He was elected alderman for Bishopsgate ward in 1828, served as Sheriff of London and Middlesex in 1828–29 and in 1835 was elected Lord Mayor of London (the third youngest man to hold that office) for 1835–36.