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Everything You Need to Know About Rare Challenge Coins

Are you looking to make your challenge coin display even more impressive?

Because of the recent health crisis, more people have taken up new hobbies to keep themselves occupied and help deal with stress. Cooking, gardening, and sewing have been the most popular ones for people who like instant results. For those looking to start and build a collection, collecting challenge coins piqued their interest.

Each challenge coin has a unique design, and collecting them is easy if you know where to look. For an impressive collection, though, you’ll want to look for rare challenge coins.

To know more about these rare coins and how to get them, read what’s below. See what the rarest coins are and add them to your collection soon!

What Is a Challenge Coin?

Challenge coins first started becoming popular in military circles during World War I. Each military branch had a coin minted with its logo and motto. Soldiers carried their coins around for morale and as a mark for camaraderie in their branch.

More designs eventually popped up during WWII. Designs now denoted which outfit or battalion the soldier was from. It’s around this time that soldiers started challenging others during their downtimes. 

A challenge would have everyone take out their coin and present it to the challenger. If someone didn’t have their coin, that person would buy everyone a round of drinks in the bar. If everyone had their coins, the person who made the challenge would treat everyone for a drink.

What Makes a Challenge Coin Rare?

Rare challenge coins are rare because of how the person gets them. There are thousands of coins in the military alone that denote where a soldier is from. The sheer volume of these coins makes them common and not worth much in terms of monetary value.

A challenge coin only becomes rare when one of two circumstances comes to pass. First, people can consider a challenge coin rare when production for those coins has ceased. This limits the supply, making it even more valuable.

Challenge coins also become rare when the circumstances to get them are difficult. A person with these coins often has quite the story to tell how they got it.

What Are the Rarest Challenge Coins Today?

Now that you know what makes a challenge coin rare, here is what people consider as the rarest of the bunch. Getting these for yourself would certainly raise your collection’s value.

Friday the 13th Challenge Coins

Becoming a chief petty officer is an impressive achievement in the navy. It’s among the highest ranks a non-commissioned officer can get, with it being the second-highest rank in the Australian navy. 

New chief petty officers celebrate their achievements along with other similarly ranked people in the chief petty mess hall. Often, they get a challenge coin in honor of the moment.

These coins by themselves are valuable, but the navy can hand out even more valuable coins. As the name suggests, this happens when one becomes a chief petty officer on Friday the 13th.

Because of how rare the 13th falls on a Friday, a coin minted with the date becomes more valuable. It becomes rarer when you consider such promotions are few and far between.

Presidential Challenge Coins

When a president becomes elected for a term, new challenge coins become minted in their honor. The president can then hand out these new coins to whoever they think deserves them. Because of this, you can imagine how difficult it would be to get one for yourself.

Often, these coins follow the traditional circular shape and markings, with only the name being different in each coin. However, the previous administration had a unique design. This sets it apart from the rest of the coins, making it a welcome addition to any collection.

Aggressive POW-MIA Coins

This coin serves as a remembrance for those who became prisoners of war. Its design consists of the National League of POW/MIA’s flag. Barbed wires surround the flag, symbolizing what the holder went through.

Crossed rifles also appear in the coin’s design. They symbolize the appeal made to have the prisoners sent back to their homes.

The Deep Sea Diver Coin

This is a special coin given to members of the military who’ve undergone deep-sea missions. Only a few could withstand the training involved, and even fewer could pull off the missions. To commemorate their achievements, the military issued special challenge coins.

The deep-sea diver coins have a unique look to them. Instead of the traditional shape, it follows the shape of the classic diving helmet. There are more helmet designs added to the back of the coin, each denoting an accomplishment made by the coin holder.

Many consider these to be the rarest challenge coins in existence. This is because deep-sea assignments themselves are rare. The danger present in these missions also factors into how rare these coins are.

Can You Get These Challenge Coins?

As you can see, the military issues most of the rarest coins. However, that doesn’t mean you need to be in the military to get one. You only need to do an act worthy of receiving one to have the coin bearer give the coin to you.

You can also join prestigious organizations for a chance of getting a rare coin. Organizations like those in law enforcement and fire protection give out their custom challenge coins to notable individuals.

Even the CIA has a coin with their motto engraved on the rims. You can check out examples of these designs on the Custom Challenge Coins website and shop.

Add More Rare Challenge Coins to Your Collection Today

Making your collection impressive isn’t an issue when you know what challenge coins to look for. Having a rare challenge coin to display means there’s an interesting story about how you got it. Impress everyone with the coin and the story that comes with it today!

Interested in learning more about rare challenge coins? Check out more of our posts and learn a thing or two today!

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