I received a letter that included a photo copy of an old b&w photo of this medallion or sign with no explanation of what it is or what it was used.
I understand it is something that was originally from Sigriswil Switzerland near Interlaken. I have no idea if it still exists and I do not know the dimensions or coloring (if any) of the original object. Also, I cannot tell why many bands cross the outer ring of the object to connect to the outer chain, which may help someone date it.
I have a strong belief that across the top is the family name "Sauser", and they are known to have been present in the community and had been for hundreds of years. The community name of Sigriswil Switzerland is shown across the bottom.
I understand the grape ring is symbolic of the wine production for the area. I have read that clovers may be a reference to the Christianizing of the area by Irish monks (Beatus of Lungern). In a Sauser family origins story I have seen the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungrau mountains referred to at least once.
I searched for some of the keywords and crests, medallions, and coats of arms, but I have not found anything similar looking yet. I have a high degree of skepticism that a family would have a coat of arms or symbol unless they had a practical purpose for one.
One theory proposed to me, besides it potentially just being a family crest, is that it was a military unit symbol for a local militia or mercenary group, but at face value it does not appear to me to be that old, but I could be wrong.
My question is the following:
What would the purpose of such a medallion or symbol (i.e. military mymbol, brand even?), and what is the symbolism of the shield and the "1" or "7" depicted?