Sir Anthony Musgrave, Governor of Jamaica 1877-1883, founded the Institute of Jamaica in 1879. After his death, it was decided by the Institute to commission a medal in his honor. The medals were designed by notable British sculptor, Alfred Toft, and were first given in 1897 as prizes to persons who displayed outstanding merit in art and crafts competitions hosted by the Institute.
The Musgrave Medals in Gold, Silver, Bronze and Musgrave Youth are awarded to those persons who have been recognized for their notable contributions to Literature, Science and Art in Jamaica and the rest of the West Indies. A Gold medal is awarded for distinguished eminence in Literature, Science or the Arts. A Silver medal is awarded for outstanding merit in the literary, scientific or artistic fields. A Bronze medal may be awarded for merit in the three aforementioned fields.
The Musgrave Youth Medal—created in 2001—may be awarded to young people between the ages of 15 and 30 who have shown excellent and outstanding creativity and discipline in the fields of Science, Literature and the Arts.
Evaluation of a potential Musgrave awardee is dependent on how his/her life work has impacted greatly on the quality of life in Jamaica, further contributing to its natural development. Evaluation is also dependent on how his/her life work has inspired others to achieve excellence.
(Information provided by the Institute of Jamaica)