Ginger Rapsus writes:
Regarding the bank tellers accepting $20 gold coins, this just shows how people who deal with money are unfamiliar with real U.S. coins. I once drafted a brochure to be given to bank employees and others who handle a great amount of change. The brochure was a general overview of U.S. coins.
I heard of someone who tried to deposit some Eisenhower dollars at his bank, and the teller called the police, thinking the coins were phony. I myself had words with a bus driver who would not accept dollar coins.
Those who handle a lot of money should have some kind of reference, so this kind of thing doesn't happen. Paper money may be included, too. People who get silver certificates or National Currency with the different colored seals think the money is phony.
Numismatic education is an age-old problem made worse in times when there are a plethora of new coin types. Perhaps a National Coin Week project could be to develop and distribute posters (not unlike the old Fractional Currency Shields) depicting the many varieties of U.S. coins and paper money one might encounter in circulation or over the counter at a bank. -Editor
A poster is an excellent idea! I have a copy of a Fractional Currency shield hanging in my home office. I wonder how this could be developed? It's more visual, and more user-friendly, than some brochure that could just be stuffed in a drawer. Customers could check out the photos on the poster too.
Here's another idea (here I go again making suggestions for someone else's budget and business plan) - perhaps a numismatic publisher could strike a deal with the U.S. Treasury, Federal Reserve or some group of large banks to commission, publish and distribute useful little booklets and/or posters depicting and describing coins and paper money. -Editor
Bob Neale writes:
As counter to the story to which Gar refers, here's one that probably shows up with some frequency, but perhaps rarely turns out like this. As a result of a longer and very interesting background story, a gentleman stepped up to a teller at a Bank of America branch where I live and offered two $1000 1928 Federal Reserve Notes on behalf of his mother for deposit - at face value. The teller suggested that the customer wait a bit and she would contact someone (me) who might be willing to pay more than face for the notes, as she obviously was aware of their semi-rarity.
Well, I met with the customer at a nearby coffeehouse, did indeed pay him well over face, and he returned home to a very pleased mother. The teller refused a small thank you I offered for the reference, saying it would be inappropriate.
Now that's honesty and character that I hope is found many places besides here in the southeast. If the double eagle teller should be prosecuted, then mine ought to get positive recognition. But among people like that, doing the right thing appears to be sufficient reward.
THE BOOK BAZARRE DAVID F. FANNING NUMISMATIC LITERATURE
will be conducting its second mail-bid auction, closing June 4. Highlights include a 1709 Act of Queen Anne, regulating the value of coins in America. For more information, go to www.fanningbooks.com
Wayne Homren, Editor
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