Past, Present, & Future! All About Challenge Coins

Posted on Mar 16, 2021 by Jesse Daugherty

Past, Present, & Future! All About Challenge Coins

Challenge coins have a long and storied history in the military. While many of us have seen challenge coins, very few have gotten an explanation of what they are. Challenge coins are custom-made coins that commemorate everything from being on a team, being in the armed forces, and much more. What started as a tradition has evolved into something very different. These days challenge coins are used as a form of marketing as well, becoming a valuable tool for brands and companies of all sorts. Having a challenge coin is a special honor, and they often become unique keepsakes for recipients. Traditionally, they are small and round, boasting distinctive artwork that showcases what the coin is for. Some feature text such as mottos or slogans, while others include logos, emblems, and other insignia.

While no one knows the exact origins of challenge coins, some say that the tradition dates back to ancient Rome. It's said that if Roman soldiers or units excelled in battle, they would receive their normal day's wage with a uniquely minted coin along with it. These coins even included the soldier's legion and were held on to instead of being spent.

Fast forward to modern times, and we get a popular original story from World War I. A wealthy battalion leader provided each of his men with bronze medallions with their flying squadron printed on them. One of the pilots was shot down over Germany and subsequently captured by German soldiers. He was stripped of his belongings except for a small pouch that carried his medallion. The soldier escaped and fled to France, where he was again captured and taken as a spy. However, after showing his coin to French troops, they recognized the coin, and the pilot was returned to his unit. From there, challenge coins have been a staple of military life, used across all branches as an honorable way to acknowledge the bravery, dedication, and loyalty.

These days challenge coins are commonplace in the service, used to commemorate particular events, promotions, and other notable moments. They are also being presented to public officials as a way to honor their service. Challenge coins can be given to anyone to commemorate any sort of extraordinary achievement. At, we specialize in custom challenge coins, but we can produce custom coins for any event, celebration, or honor. Custom coins are an excellent gift to give to loved ones to remember something they've done. You don't have to be a war hero or a member of the armed forces to get a challenge coin.

Designing and creating custom challenge coins has never been easier. We have created a wide variety of coins for military members, police, firefighters, and more. The process is quite simple, and our team is always willing to help. Simply provide us with a few key details such as personal details, the size, and the shape of your coin, and we will get started creating something exceptional. With a selection of options, including metal style, plating, and artwork, we can help you truly create something outstanding.

Challenge coins are reserved for notable moments and people who have achieved something remarkable. They are ideal for honoring service, but they are also good for a birthday, graduation, or retirement. No matter why you want to create a custom challenge coin, we've got the experience and the team to bring your idea to life. Now that you know the history of challenge coins and their meaning let's get started with your own challenge coin. Get a free quote or email us. We'd be honored to help!

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