PMG-certified 1865 Note in the Spotlight at Stack's Bowers Sale

Posted on 11/10/2019

The extremely rare $500 note also has an intriguing background: Apparently, someone tried to redeem it a second time.

Paper Money Guaranty® (PMG®) has certified 29 of the top 30 lots of the Stack’s Bowers November 2019 sale of vintage US currency in Baltimore, including an extremely rare Civil War-era note. The auction concludes on Nov. 14.

The top lot is an 1865 $500 Interest Bearing Note, Fr. 212f, graded PMG 25 Very Fine. It has an estimate of $300,000 to $500,000 and a mysterious story.

This 1865 $500 Interest Bearing Note, Fr. 212f, is graded PMG 25 Very Fine. It has an estimate of $300,000 to $500,000 and a mysterious back story.
Click image to enlarge.

The note had its serial number altered and the payee’s name removed after it was redeemed, apparently in an attempt to redeem it again. It also shows signs that Treasury Department officials discovered the plot, writing the correct serial number by hand on the note and punch-canceling it repeatedly.

On the back also is a hand-written note: “Writing has evidently been removed from the payee mark on this note SMC June 26/68.” This inscription likely was added by Spencer Clark, head of the National Currency Bureau at the time, according to the auction house.

The note, submitted to PMG through its CrossOver service, was part of the well-known numismatist Joel R. Anderson’s collection and is the only $500 note of its kind from 1865 in the PMG Population Report.

The auction also features a 1902 $10, Fr. 613, graded PMG 30 Very Fine with an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000. The note is the only one known to exist that was issued by the Farmers National Bank of Kingfisher in the Oklahoma Territory. It has been held by the family of the man who organized the bank, which operated from 1903 to 1905.

Other PMG-graded highlights of the sale include:

All estimates are by the auction house.

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