In my recent (November 10, 2013) numismatic diary, I mentioned that Dave Bowers showed me a new purchase of his at the Whitman Baltimore coin show. His latest Coin World column highlights the piece, a rare National Bank Note from the Colorado Territory.
One thing about numismatics is that there is always something new to be discovered.
Our hobby combines coins, tokens, medals and paper money as the basics. If you have enjoyed coins, have you investigated tokens, medals and paper money yet? Coins are a great way to begin, but rare coins can be expensive, as can be common coins in ultra-high grades.
In contrast, in these noncoin series grading is important but is not a prime focus. Prices by comparison are often incredible bargains, grade for grade.
For paper money, for many varieties the finest known example may be only Good or Very Good. And yet, such are in tremendous demand. Ditto for Colonial coins. Just two 1714 Gloucester (Virginia) shillings are known, both of which are well worn and have part of the inscriptions missing. The Guide Book (see page 48) estimates the value as $120,000.
The point of this week’s column is that although high grade is always desirable, thousands of varieties of tokens and currency notes exist only in lower grades — and with many enthusiasts eagerly chasing them.
I illustrate a note I purchased from Tom Denly for $5,500 at the recent Whitman Coins & Collectibles Expo in Baltimore. I suggest that it grades Good 4. It is from the First National Bank of Central City, Colorado Territory, a Wild West rip-roaring gold mining town.
It is the only known federal $1 bill of its type from this bank, a brand new discovery, according to expert Tom Denly (though $1 notes are known from other Colorado Territorial national banks). I am not sure what I will do with it, but I had to buy it as I had never seen or heard of such before.
What do you think?
Well, I think it's a great find. I've collected obsolete currency for years, and indeed, passing up an opportunity to purchase a rare note because of its poor condition is often a mistake. As Dave notes, it may well be the only surviving example and you'll never find another in a million years.
To read the complete article, see:
Always something new
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
WAYNE'S NUMISMATIC DIARY: NOVEMBER 10, 2013
Wayne Homren, Editor
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