This webpage discusses the Rowe-Barr Collection of Texas Currency at the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University.
Found via News & Notes from the Society of Paper Money Collectors (Volume VIII, Number 41, March 28, 2023).
The Rowe-Barr Collection of Texas Currency at the DeGolyer Library is the most comprehensive in the United States, representing thousands of notes, scrip, bonds, and other financial obligations, issued in Texas between the 1820s and 1935.
Holdings and Highlights
John N. Rowe III and B.B. Barr are brothers-in-law, business partners, and advocates for historical preservation. Both men enjoy collecting and sharing the fruits of their collecting with others. Mr. Rowe, one of the leading numismatic dealers in the United States, started collecting bank notes as a boy. His hobby soon turned into a full-time profession. His special interest is Texas currency through the Civil War. Mr. Barr devoted much of his effort to collecting notes from the post-Civil War period. The men gave their collection to SMU in 2003, so it would be preserved and made accessible to others. This digital collection includes currency from significant historical eras, including the Republic of Texas (1836-1845), early statehood (1845-1861), the Confederacy (1861-1865), and the National Bank Era (1863-1913).
The Rowe-Barr currency collection offers an interesting avenue of access to life in Texas from the early days of its independence from Mexico through the years of the Great Depression. Issued by more than 100 counties, as well as banks, merchants, and private individuals, these notes were most often redeemable for cash, but sometimes for land or shares of stock.
Among the more famous signatures are those of Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, David G. Burnet, Asa Brigham, Francis R. Lubbock, John Wyatt Moody, and Green DeWitt. Designs on the notes range from simple to quite elaborate and decorative.
About the Currency Collection
Known to collectors as "obsolete" notes, the Rowe-Barr Collection of Texas Currency is useful in a variety of ways for historical research.
Many of the currency notes are unique, and help to identify the issuing organizations that would otherwise be lost to history. By studying how notes were used, both within Texas and in exchange with merchants and governments elsewhere, scholars can learn much about the true basis and workings of the Texas economy.
In addition, currency notes are often beautiful objects in themselves and can be studied as examples of the art of engraving and printing. The imagery associated with the notes -- from classical goddesses to bison to railroads to cotton bolls -- tells us something about the culture and its aspirations and ideals.
To read the complete article, see:
Rowe-Barr Collection of Texas Currency
Wayne Homren, Editor
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.
To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor
at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 1998 - 2023 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.
NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster