Dr. Glenn Stephen Murray, president of the Association of Friends of the Segovia Mint
Dating of the building: 16th century.
Applicant: Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Segovia.
Reason for the award :
For the exceptional work carried out for over twenty years by Dr. Murray to save the Segovia Mint and finally turning it up into an important museum.
Stephen Murray’s initiative is unmatched in modern conservation history. Mr. Murray, an American doctor who is an expert in Modern Age mints, managed with constant determination and dedication to promote the recovery of the Segovia Mint, the most important of its kind in the 16th century.
Dr. Glenn Murray, born in the city of Los Angeles, California, in 1952, moved to Spain in 1987 to study the Segovia Mint, abandoned and in ruins. Murray received grants from the American Numismatic Association and the National Mint and Stamp Factory to research the Simancas Archives and the National Historic Site. As a result of these investigations, he presented his Doctoral Thesis on the Segovia Mint in 2004 at the University of Valladolid.
In his studies on the subject, Murray has shown that the hydraulic coin factory, built by Philip II in 1583 with the help of Tyrolean engineers, is the oldest, most advanced, and complete for its mechanical serial production of identical pieces preserved in the world. Much earlier, in 1988, he had already presented a project for its recovery under the name of Segovia ‘92, with its scheduled inauguration in 1992 coinciding with the celebration of the V Centenary of the discovery of America. There were delays, and, in 1993, he founded the Friends of the Segovia Mint Association to support the rehabilitation. The Association managed to get recognition as an Asset of Cultural Interest of the complex in 2000, which led to the completion of stabilization works, as well as the integration of the monument in the European project EuroMint (2000-2002). In 2003, the City Council commissioned Murray with the Museum Director Project requested by the architect of the rehabilitation project. In 2005 the local, regional and national administrations signed the agreement for it. During all this time, the Association offered visits to the monument in ruins, and in 2005 it acquired a hammer-minting press, to educate the public about the importance of the recovery of the Segovia Mint. The work finally began in 2007 and concluded in 2011, twenty-four years after Murray launched his awareness campaign.