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Military Trophies

Custom Military Trophies, Awards & Military Plaques Produced from Premium Materials

Recognize your favorite U.S. Military Staff Members with a beautiful award or trophy. EDCO offers awards for Military Appreciation, Military Retirement Awards, Officer Promotion as well as custom awards programs designed to recognize your team for perpetual monthly and quarterly performance. Our Military Awards include wall plaques and free standing bookshelf designs constructed from crystal, American hardwood, acrylic as well as statues cast from resin. EDCO can also help you with challenge coins and custom cast medallions.

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Featured Blog Posts
The Evolution of Retirement Awards
The Evolution of Retirement Awards

Considering the history and the fact our modern understanding of retirement has been a very recent phenomenon, you may be inclined to believe that there hasn’t been much of an evolution in retirement awards but you’d be wrong. Rewards have existed for as long as the idea of what retirement was has existed and they’ve changed along with it.

Retirement celebration award

It took a while for society to recognize the benefits of retirement awards, along with any other award in a good employee recognition program, but that doesn’t mean that these benefits could soon become obsolete. If anything, awards like these are even more important in today’s world considering few people stay with the same company for most of their working lives. Turnover rate has increased by a staggering 88% every year since 2010 and this low talent retention rate is proving to be costly, making it all the more important to honor retiring employees who’ve been with the company a long time.

So, what has the evolution of retirement awards looked like? Read on and find out!

Sheriff retirement award

The First Retirement Award

The first instance of an “award” for retirement dates all the way back to ancient Rome when Emperor Caesar Augustus offered certain legionaries in the empire’s army a retirement package. The package was about 13 times a soldier’s annual salary, and this monetary compensation can be considered the first retirement award in recorded history. It was available to soldiers who had completed 20 years of service in the Roman legion alongside five in the military reserves. This idea was first implemented in 13 BC and was initially funded by general revenue but eight years later in 5 BC Caesar Augustus established a special fund to award retired legionaries their compensation.

Unlike the retirement awards given out today, which are meant to honor an employee’s hard work, dedication, loyalty and show appreciation, this financial compensation was awarded for entirely different reasons. Caesar Augustus awarded his legionnaires money not out of appreciation for their service but to keep them from revolting against the Roman Empire. It was an incentive that aimed to keep retired soldiers loyal. In addition to this, some soldiers were awarded a parcel of land, but it remains unclear if all soldiers were given both land and money or a choice between the two.

Today, we understand that keeping employees happy with their work and loyal to their employers shouldn’t be done after the fact, but this just goes to show how much retirement awards have evolved over the years.

Monetary compensation in the form of pensions would again be used as an award for retired soldiers, this time almost 1600 years after the Roman Empire awarded their legionnaires money upon their retirement. In sessions between 1592 and 1593 the British Parliament made a pension for soldiers that had put themselves in grave danger, lost limbs, or became disabled from injuries sustained in combat. Lieutenants could get up to 20 English pounds while privates could get up to 10.

Crystal retirement award

Retirement Awards For the Modern Era

For the next few hundred years in human history, retirement plans would become available to more and more people across the world, but monetary compensation remained the norm for retirement awards. It wasn’t until 1935, with the enactment of the Social Security Act and later amendments to it, that retirement became a real possibility for millions of Americans. Following this act is when retirement awards as we think of them today – trophies, plaques, vases, and more – came into being. Since more people were eligible for financial compensation in retirement, something special was needed to celebrate and honor those who had been with the same company for a long time and retirement awards as we know them today were born.

Find Modern Retirement Awards at EDCO

When you’re looking for the perfect award that truly communicates how much you and the company appreciate the dedicated work and loyalty of a retiring employee there’s nowhere better than EDCO – the nations leading supplier of recognition. Shop our vast selection of or create a custom award today!

5 Examples of Successful Retirement Awards
5 Examples of Successful Retirement Awards
Employee recognition programs are vital to boosting company morale and creating an engaging, competitive, and productive workplace and no employee recognition program is complete without a retirement award. The award publicly honors those who’ve provided the company with quality, meaningful work over the years and gives them a physical token of your appreciation. Retirement awards also show that your workspace is one that cares about and invests in its talent.
The History of Retirement Awards
The History of Retirement Awards

While the concept of retirement has been around for thousands of years, retirement as we know it today has only been around for 90 years. To better understand it, why it’s worth celebrating, and recognition in the workplace in general it helps to look at early examples and track how the idea of retirement has changed over time. Such an understanding will only enrich your current employee recognition program and make celebrating the retirement of a co-worker or employee even more meaningful.


The first example of retirement dates all the way back to 13 BC when the Emperor of Rome Caesar Augustus offered his legionnaires a retirement package which was roughly 13 times their annual salary. Soldiers became eligible after 20 years of service in the legion and five in the military reserves. Caesar Augustus intended this to be an incentive for soldiers not to rise up against the empire they once served and overthrow the government. Eight years later in 5 BC Caesar Augustus doubled down on this idea, establishing a special fund to pay retired legionnaires rather than taking money from the empire’s general revenue.


The next major example of retirement also involved establishing a pension fund for soldiers, but almost 1600 years after Caesar Augustus was the first to do so and this time in England. In sessions between 1592-93, English Parliament established a pension for soldiers who lost limbs, became disabled, or otherwise put themselves sin great danger. Private soldiers could get up to 10 English pounds while lieutenants could get up to 20.
1684 saw the first nonmilitary members become eligible to receive a pension, as London Port Authorities became the first public servants to qualify for pension. Throughout the 18th century more and more members of the military became eligible for retirement and pension funds, as the US congress established pensions for naval forces, the Army, officers who stayed in service after the Revolutionary War, and more.


In 1857 New York became the first state to establish a retirement plan for police officers and by 1917 85% of US cities with populations over 100,000 provided some form of pension plan for their police forces.
The first retirement plan for private-sector workers in America was introduced by American Express in 1875. American Express employees who had worked for the company for over 20 years and had reached the age of 60 and been recommended for retirement by a manager could receive up to half their salary annually. By 1919 there were over 300 private-sector plans in existence.


Retirement as we know it today came to be with the Social Security Act in 1935, largely influenced by the effects of the Great Depression and the Industrial Revolution. The act created a federal safety net for Americans who were elderly, disabled, or otherwise disadvantaged. Over the next several decades the act would be amended to allow more people to qualify for retirement benefits and for the number of benefits to be expanded. BY 1983, 40 million Americans were covered by private-sector pensions. Today, 84% of retirees collect social security and 44% collect other benefits like 401(k)s.

Crystal Pyramid Retirement Award


Considering what retirement looked like prior to the turn of the 21st century, and how few would have even been eligible for retirement benefits back then, celebrating retirement is all the more meaningful. Celebrating it is not just about honoring past accomplishments but also celebrating the fact that we live in a time where so many can have fulfilling, enjoyable lives after their careers have run their course. And what better way to commemorate retirement that with a beautiful award? At EDCO, we’re the nation’s leader in recognition and have a wide selection of retirement awards that are all perfect for showing your employees how much you appreciate their continued hard work over the years. Shop our selection today!

How To Celebrate Your Employees In a Work-From-Home Environment
How To Celebrate Your Employees In a Work-From-Home Environment

The severity of the global COVID19 pandemic prompted quite a bit of change in practically every aspect of life, but particularly in the business sector. Abrupt closures of thousands of businesses meant offices and other workspaces were abandoned as a new era of remote work was ushered in for millions across the entire nation. The abrupt change, coupled with the uncertainty of the pandemic, meant that as employers scrambled to transition their operations online as best they could some elements were lost in the process. Unfortunately, this resulted in many employee recognition programs falling to the wayside or put being put on hold.

In the year since the onset of the pandemic, many companies have learned how to successfully digitize much of what they do, and many now offer more digital services, but regardless of the reliance on in-person or remote work a good employee recognition program is still important. In some ways, it’s even more vital to company success in a remote, work-from-home environment.

The specifics and frequency of awards will vary from company to company, but all should enjoy the same benefits. By celebrating and honoring the accomplishments and hard work of their employees, businesses can motivate their employees to be more productive, work more efficiently.

Use recognition awards to motivate our remote employees

Continue the Tradition of Employee Recognition

Maintaining a good employee recognition program will also boost employee morale and contribute to more supportive culture that lowers retention rates. It’s simple – if employees feel as though their hard work and dedication is not just appreciated, but publicly recognized they’ll want to work harder and have less interest in searching for employment elsewhere. This acknowledgement is especially important when facing a work-from-home environment, as you won’t have the opportunities to show your appreciation through words and actions in person in the office.

Considering the importance of employee recognition awards in a work-from-home environments, you’ll want to give a lot of thought into the type of award you’re bestowing. Such awards should be meaningful, public, and personalized so they truly convey how appreciative you are of your employee’s hard work. To create a meaningful award, incorporate some work from home element in the name or physical trophy itself. If some of your employees work in office and others are remote, perhaps give out a remote employee of the month award in addition to an in-office employee of the month.

Remote employee recognition awards are powerful for team building in a remote environment.

Embrace the Changing Environment by Recognizing New Achievements

We all know that working remote comes with its fair share of technical difficulties, so perhaps give out an award to those who persevered despite having a bad internet connection or other technical issues. Even if you can’t physically present the award, make sure the recipient is brought up in a company meeting or in some other way where all can see. Lastly, you don’t want to get something generic without the company logo or recipient’s name engraved because it’ll make it seem like you didn’t put any thought into the award.

Regardless of how you decide to celebrate the accomplishments of your employees during a work-from-home environment, EDCO has such a massive selection of trophies, plaques, crystal awards, and more that you’re guaranteed to find an award that meets your needs. Shop our selection today!

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