Lenin Prize Medal, #1874, with award document issued to
Ekaterina Sukhanova in 1965.
The medallion is in solid 23 K gold; measures 27.1 mm in
width; weighs 20.4 grams without suspension and connecting
link; overall weight with suspension is 27.8 g. Beautifully
detailed bas-relief of Lenin in high tri-dimensional profile
to the obverse. The reverse has a stamped serial number. The
suspension is in silver gilt, measures 23.9 mm wide.
The medal is in outstanding, excellent condition. The
obverse is literally pristine, free of any wear visible to
the naked eye. Even under 10x magnification, we could find
no more than a few microscopic contact marks to the raised
edge. The details of the bas-relief are perfect and
exceptionally crisp. The reverse has a couple of miniscule
ding to the field and a couple of similarly tiny, nearly
unnoticeable dings to the raised edge, otherwise as pristine
as the obverse of the medal. The stippling is perfectly
preserved on both sides.
The suspension is likewise essentially perfect, with intact
gilt accentuated by nice patina to silver but not obscured
by it. The old ribbon appears to be original to the medal.
The connecting link is original and has not been cut.
The document is a Lenin Prize Winner's ID (aka "Small
Certificate" for the Lenin Prize) was filled-out on 21 April
1965. Similar in format to the ID of a Hero of the Soviet
Union, it is bound in nice maroon leather with gold
inscription "Laureate of the Lenin Prize" on the front
cover. The document contains a photo of the recipient and
specifies that the award was bestowed upon her on 21 April
1965 by a decision of the Lenin Prize Committee for the
Field of Science and Technology. Note that the serial number
of the certificate does not match the number of the medal,
as is practically always the case (the numbers were not
supposed to match). The document number 1836 is however
extremely close to the award serial number 1874. The medal
and document were originally acquired as a set long time
ago, and in all likelihood, the two were indeed issued to
the same person.
The document is in excellent condition. There is very little
wear to the cover; the leather is healthy, with attractive
gloss. The internal pages are clean.
The recipient, Ekaterina Sukhanova, was a prominent Soviet
geological scientist who had made a key contribution to
discovering and mapping exceptionally rich copper and nickel
deposits in the Krasnoyarsk region of Siberia, not far from
the northern mining city of Norilsk. Her discovery, made in
1960 in cooperation with three other geologists (all of them
men), was of tremendous importance for the economy of the
Soviet Union. Even now, after more than half a century of
active exploration, this area called Talnakhskoe Field is
estimated to contain as much as 23% of all nickel ore
deposits of Russia and over 11% of all of her copper. The
filed also proved an important source of platinum,
palladium, gold, cobalt and selenium.