Code Talkers Recognition Congressional Medals Program: White Mountain Apache Tribe (Arizona)
The Code Talkers Recognition Act of 2008 requires the Secretary of the Treasury to strike Congressional Medals in recognition of the dedication and valor of Native American code talkers to the U.S. Armed Services during World War I and World War II. “Code talkers” refers to those Native Americans who used their tribal languages as a means of secret communication during wartime.
Under the Act, unique gold medals are struck for each Native American tribe that had a member who served as a code talker. Silver duplicate medals are presented to the specific code talkers, their next of kin, or other personal representatives. In addition, bronze duplicates are available for sale to the public.
The Navajo Nation was awarded Congressional Gold Medals in 2001 under Public Law 106-554.
The obverse design features code talkers behind sand bags. The code talker in the foreground is using a field phone to deliver a message, while the one in the background writes the coded message.
The reverse design features a variation of the White Mountain Apache Tribe seal. The seal depicts a rainbow rising against the sky over a landscape with an elk standing by a river near a wikiup, or traditional dwelling. Snow-capped mountains are in the distance, while nearer, at the base of the seal, is a pine forest. An earthen Apache vase, in the foreground, is flanked by two feathers and a pair of lightning bolts near the outer edge of the seal.
- WHITE MOUNTAIN APACHE TRIBE
- CODE TALKERS
- WORLD WAR II
- ACT OF CONGRESS 2008