The Jewish-American Hall of Fame is inducting Superman’s Jewish creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster in November.
To honor the induction, a Jerry Siegel (1914-1996) and Joe Shuster (1914-1992) medal has been struck by the Highland Mint. Limited quantities will be available of 85 in bronze, 52 in pure silver, and 28 in gold-plated silver.
The front of the medal features Siegel and Shuster at work and the back features a “Fist and POW!” as they are seen “punching through the Jewish-American Hall of Fame.”
Siegel and Shuster were both born in 1914 to parents who had immigrated from Europe, with Siegel’s family settling in Cleveland, Ohio and Shuster’s family living in Toronto, Canada but later moving to Cleveland where he met Siegel in high school.
After creating the comic strip character Superman, the pair began a six-year odyssey to find an interested publisher. They eventually sold their idea to DC comics for the small sum of $130, where they were employed creating Superman comics. Superman began life in an anthology titled Action Comics #1 in June 1938, with Shuster drawing Superman lifting a car over his head. The Superman character was so popular with readers that he was soon given his own comic book. In 2021, a near mint copy of Action Comics #1 sold for $3.25 million.
“One of the reasons for the early success of Superman was how Siegel wrote about real issues that affected everyday people,” said the Hall of Fame in a statement. “As time passed, Hitler’s rise in Europe with his anti-Semitic words and the negative stereotypes of Jewish people, pushed Siegel and Shuster to make a hero that defended the weak, and to tell stories that would cheer Americans on as things looked grave in the war.”
The induction ceremony will take place on November 14 on Zoom and is open to the public.