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PMG Announces Second-Generation Holder

The next generation  PMG label and holder is scheduled for release on Jan. 3, 2011.

PMG will begin use of a new generation holder on January 3, 2011. All notes encapsulated after that date by PMG will automatically be placed in the new holder. Additionally, the new holder will be used for on-site grading during the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) convention in January. This holder marks the first design iteration of the PMG holder since the company launched in 2005. The second-generation PMG holder is made from the same high-quality inert materials and is very similar in shape and overall aesthetics; however, it features new, highly sophisticated anti-counterfeiting and tampering-prevention technologies.

While PMG has not had any reported instances of holder tampering or counterfeiting, the company’s mandate requires periodic reviews of the security of its products. PMG was able to take advantage of advances and technologies used by other Certified Collectibles Group companies, including NGC, in their own certification holders. Ultimately, the holder was upgraded to maintain PMG’s leadership role and the strong preference for its certification holder among currency collectors.

“Our newest label and holder fully satisfies PMG’s combined objectives of exceptional visual display, security and long-term preservation,” comments PMG Grader Richard Stelzer.

Some of the changes will be almost invisible. For example, the label in the second-generation PMG holder includes a conservation-grade UV fiber paper, as did the previous version, but also includes a new UV watermark. These features are not visible under normal light, but when viewed under ultraviolet light these features help confirm the authenticity of PMG product.

Additionally, spot metallic-foil and holographic patterns have been added to the label design and borders. A state-of-the-art hologram is also now fused directly to the label paper. All of these features combine to make the PMG label virtually impossible to reproduce.

The outside holder itself has also undergone important changes. The holder’s sealed edges now include an embossed pattern. The custom design relies on a unique safe-sealing method pioneered by Certified Collectibles Group. The complex repeating texture includes the PMG logo and other elements within the seal that also confirm the quality and thoroughness of the holder seal.

For more information or to have your notes encapsulated in the newest PMG holder, contact PMG customer service at 1-877-PMG-5570 or service@PMGnotes.com.

Useless Money: Production “Error” to Cause Delay in New $100 Bill Debut

The US government said it is still trying to identify the source of the production glitch that forced it to postpone introducing the new $100 bill and could force it to shred hundreds of millions of error-ridden bills. The issue stems from what officials called a “problem with sporadic creasing of the paper during printing” that resulted in blanks spots on some of the newly redesigned bills.

Officials at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing are working with Crane & Co., the Massachusetts company which has supplied the government with paper for currency for more than 130 years, to identify what caused the errors, but it’s unclear if the problem was caused by Crane’s paper or some other element of the printing process.

A person familiar with the situation said that at the height of the printing process, as many as 30 percent of the bills rolling off the printing press included the flaw, leading to the production shut down.

The government said it believes most of the 1.1 billion bills already printed can be salvaged, but any of the bills that were misprinted will have to be shredded.

According to a source familiar with the matter, the bills are the most costly ever produced, with a per-note cost of about 12 cents—twice the cost of a conventional bill. That means the government spent about $120 million to produce bills it can’t use. On top of that, it is not yet clear how much more it will cost to sort the existing horde of hundred dollar bills.

Sorting such a huge quantity of bills by hand, the officials estimate, could take between 20 and 30 years. Using a mechanized system, they think they could sort the massive pile of bills in about one year. (more…)

1861 $10 Demand Note, only known, to headline Heritage FUN Auction in Tampa

First Heritage Currency auction of 2011, Jan. 6-8, at Tampa FUN Convention

Heritage Auctions, the official auctioneer of the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) Show, will present a substantial number of rare and exceptional notes as part of its Signature® Currency Auction. The auction will consist of three floor sessions, held Jan. 6-8, 2011 in Tampa, FL and one online-only session that will take place Jan. 10, 2011 in Dallas, TX.

Among the scarce items is a newly discovered Fr. 10a $10 1861 Demand Note, the only known example. The recently released 19th edition of Paper Money of the United States listed examples of that Friedberg number as “unknown.” Clerks signed the notes on behalf of the Treasurer of the United States and the secretary of the Treasury and included the handwritten notation “for the.” The process proved to be too cumbersome and the plates were changed to include that wording. All of the handwritten “for the” examples are rare today, with a St. Louis example unknown until now.

A number of exceptional Large Size Legal Tender notes are being offered, including a Fr. 127 $20 1869 Legal Tender graded by PCGS as Gem New 65PPQ. That note is among a large number of outstanding notes being offered as part of The Menlo Park Collection. A Fr. 1072a $100 1914 Red Seal Federal Reserve Note graded PCGS Gem New 65PPQ is also being auctioned as part of the collection.

Also among the Legal Tender offerings is a Fr. 158 $50 1880 Legal Tender graded by PCGS Choice About New 55. A rare note, it is one of only nine examples known. The $50 is new to the census and is being offered publicly for the first time.

Several exceedingly rare replacement notes will be presented, including a Fr. 303* $10 1908 Silver Certificate, one of only three replacement notes known for the type, graded Very Good 10 Net by PMG. The note is new to the census and is being offered to the collecting community for the first time. (more…)

William Pannier Collection of Historic, Rare California Bank Notes Offered By Goldbergs

More than 100 Orange County California bank notes from the collection of the late William (“Willie”) Pannier will be among the highlights of the pre-Long Beach Expo auction to be conducted by Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins and Collectibles in Beverly Hills, California, January 31 – February 2, 2011.

“These historic, Southern California large and small-size notes have been off the market for decades in his collection. There are several unique and serial number one examples,” said Larry Goldberg, partner with his cousin, Ira, in the auction firm.


Photo Caption: The First National Bank of Santa Ana, 1902 $10 Red Seal, PCGS Currency VG10, unique, the only known Red Seal from Orange County California, is one of the highlights of the William Pannier Collection to be offered in an auction by Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles, January 31 – February 2, 2011. Photo credit: Lyle Engelson for Ira & Larry Goldberg Coins & Collectibles

Pannier, who died in August at the age of 66, was the long-time owner of Fullerton Coin & Stamp Company, the oldest coin and stamp store in Orange County California. Well-known collector and real estate developer Dwight Manley worked at the shop on weekends as a teenager, and considers Pannier a beloved numismatic mentor.

Pannier began collecting silver certificate notes in the late 1960s and then became interested in Orange County currency, according to his brother David.
“We were second generation Orange County residents. Orange County was in our roots. Some of the notes were displayed at the store, but he kept the more pricey things at home. He always tried to upgrade the notes or get a lower serial number for his collection,” David Pannier recalled.

Highlights of the Orange County California bank notes in the Goldberg’s auction include:

  • The First National Bank of Fullerton, 1882 $10 Value Back, graded PCGS Currency VF30, the finest of only three known Value Backs from the entire county;
  • The Farmers & Merchants National Bank of Santa Ana, 1902 $20 Date Back, PCGS Currency VF20PPQ, one of only four known from the bank; (more…)

Rare 1934 $5,000 Federal Reserve Note Will Be Auctioned Nov. 30

A rare $5,000 Federal Reserve Note, said to be one of only 342 known to be remaining in circulation, will be auctioned on Tuesday, Nov. 30, by Chicago auction house Direct Auction Galleries in an auction taking place in Chicago at 7232 N. Western Ave. Absentee bids are also accepted.

The $5,000 bill is one of 800 lots which also includes a 1934-Star $1,000 Federal Reserve Note (165,372 said to be remaining in circulation), and a 1934-A $500 Federal Reserve Note (Unc.), Brown & Green Seal Notes, 8 Gold Coins including an 1898 Unc. Gold Liberty Head Coin, and more in an auction also offering Furniture and Furnishings, Jewelry, a Vintage Nickel Slot Machine, Bronzes, Art, 1893 Columbian Exposition and 1933 Century of Progress items, and much more.

The last printing of high denomination bills ($500 to $100,000) was in 1945. Giving way to advancing and secure technologies, the large bills had been used by banks and the U.S. government primarily for bank transfer payments, and the Federal Reserve officially discontinued these notes and began removing them from circulation in 1969.

The rare $5,000 bill in this auction is graded approximately AU condition and has James Madison, the 4th president of the United States (1809-1817), the “Father of the Constitution” and chief architect of the Bill of Rights on it.

An interesting footnote about President Madison, he also helped establish the departments of war, treasury, and state, and also tried to establish a national brewery; and even a cabinet position for a secretary of beer, as reported on a recent “Sunday Morning” on CBS. Whoever has the winning bid for this item might be toasting with more than beer!

Direct Auction Galleries is a Chicago auction house specializing in estates and fine antiques, founded in 1962 by Mike and Barbara Modica, located at 7232 N. Western Ave. in Chicago. Auctions are held every other Tuesday with inspections Monday prior to auction day from 3:30-7:30pm and 2-3pm before the sale. For more information, call 773-465-3300 or for full listing, photos, and catalog, visit www.directauction.com.

Money on Paper Exhibit at Firestone Library, Princeton University Opens August 30th

Bank Notes and Related Graphic Arts from the Collections of Vsevolod Onyshkevych and Princeton University – August 30, 2010, to January 2, 2011

Paper money as a form of art might seem the makings of a rather small exhibition, to judge from the modern bills of the United States and Europe. Bank notes, however, have constituted one of the dominant forms of visual communication for the past two centuries, and in many cases can be seen as works of art in their own right. Princeton University’s Numismatic Collection is featuring currency worth looking at in the exhibition “Money on Paper” on view in the August 30, 2010, through January 2, 2011.

New Jersey, 1 shilling, December 31, 1763.
Printed by James Parker, Woodbridge.

Because British colonial policies resulted in a dearth of circulating coins, the American colonies were the home of the earliest regular issues of paper money. Illustration was applied to colonial currency as an anti-counterfeiting device as well as for aesthetic purposes. Not surprisingly, the most inventive printer of paper money of the time was Benjamin Franklin, who devised a system of transferring the vein patterns of tree leaves to printing plates to foil counterfeiters. The Princeton exhibition includes a large selection of Franklin’s nature-print notes, as well as issues of Paul Revere and the South Carolina engraver Thomas Coram, who brought classical imagery to that colony’s bank notes.

One of the highlights of the exhibit will be the first public display of the recently discovered banknote engraving of a grouse by John James Audubon, the great wildlife illustrator’s first published work. On display with a sample sheet containing the vignette will be an original watercolor by Audubon, a steel printing plate from The Birds of America, and the Princeton first edition of the elephant folio book open to the page with Audubon’s drawing of the pinnated grouse.

Asher B. Durand, one of America’s greatest painters, was also a major figure in the development of bank note art in this country. Along with his brother Cyrus, who invented a highly decorative series of anti-counterfeiting devices, he developed a classical, patriotic approach to bank note design that dominated the medium for the first half of the nineteenth century.


Montgomery $1,000
Confederate States of America, $1,000, Montgomery, May 22, 1861.
Portraits of John C. Calhoun and Andrew Jackson
.

A section of the Princeton exhibit will explore the divergence of imagery on the bank notes of northern and southern issuers before and during the Civil War. Collectors of paper money will be especially interested by the complete set, in Extremely Fine condition, of six notes printed by the National Bank Note Company in New York and smuggled into the Confederacy in 1861 for distribution as notes of Montgomery, Alabama, and Richmond, Virginia. The American section of the exhibition ends with the high point of American bank note art, the Educational Series of 1896, designed and engraved by some of the most important illustrators of the day. (more…)

Heritage to Present 2,800+ Lot Currency Auction at Boston ANA

Official Auctioneer of the ANA World’s Fair of Money, Aug. 11-16

The Official Currency Auction of the 2010 ANA World’s Fair of Money in Boston, MA will be conducted by Heritage Auctions Aug. 11-16. The auction includes three floor sessions and one online session. Lot viewing will be conducted at the Hynes Convention Center, Room 210, 900 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02115 and the floor sessions will be held at the Hynes Convention Center, Room 203, 900 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02115.

In addition to lot viewing in Boston, a preliminary lot viewing will take place at Heritage Galleries Beverly Hills, 9478 W. Olympic Blvd., Suite #100, Beverly Hills, CA 90212 on Friday, July 30, 2010 and Saturday, July 31, 2010.

Session One will begin on Wednesday evening, Aug. 11, at 6 p.m. ET and includes Continental Currency, Colonial Currency, Fractional Currency, Encased Postage, Obsolete Currency, Confederate Notes, a Confederate Bond, Miscellaneous, Postal Notes, Military Payment Certificates, World Currency, and Canadian Currency.

Heritage Currency Auctions is presenting The Collection of a Patriotic American, a complete collection of all 102 Friedberg numbers associated with Continental Currency and believed to be the finest collection ever assembled. The collection also includes 71 additional related items, including the extremely rare marbled edge counterfeit detector; eight extra Fugio bills representing the different plate positions; 21 different contemporary counterfeits; nine sheets of Continental Currency, including a very rare sheet of Fugio bills; and nine counterfeit detector sheets. Among the 71 items are 23 pieces issued by cities and states payable in Continental Currency: four notes from Albany dated 1776 and 19 typeset certificates from Georgia dated June and September 1777.

Among the many highlights of the collection is the finest known Continental Currency May 10, 1775 $20 PCGS Choice About New 58PPQ. The $20 from this first issue of Continental Currency is the only piece of the 102 different Continental Currency notes that has a different shape, size, paper, and color. Benjamin Franklin procured the distinctive marbled edge paper from his contacts in Paris.

Other exceptional rarities in the collection include: a Continental Currency February 17, 1776 Twenty Four Note Sheet Choice About New, the finest of three known examples; a Continental Currency May 20, 1777 Complete Double Sheet of Sixteen Extremely Fine-About New which is unique to Heritage’s best knowledge; a Continental Currency May 10, 1775 $20 Counterfeit Detector PCGS Choice About New 58, one of only two known examples and the only one available to collectors as the other piece belongs to the Colonial Williamsburg Museum; and a gorgeous Georgia June 8, 1777 $8 PCGS Choice About New 58PPQ that was payable in Continental Currency, hence its inclusion in this collection. (more…)

Stacks Holds The 52 Collection: Art and Security on American Paper Currencies Auction

Stacks hosted an American paper currency auction on Tuesday, June 29th, 2010 in New York. 

The 781 lot sale was anchored by The 52 Collection: Part I. This collection was carefully assembled over two decades by Bruce Roland Hagen (currently a professional numismatistwith Stacks), which features American obsolete currency proofs, engraver’s sample sheets, Federal proofs and related items that emphasize the artistry and security of American paper currency from Colonial times to the 1920s.

Two highlights from the sale include:

Silver Certificate. 1895. Five Dollars. Face Essay Proof. Similar to Fr.268. Choice AU. SOLD $18,400


No plate letter. Printed on India paper, mounted on new card. Imprint of Bureau of Engraving and Printing. Virtually the same design used on the Series of 1896, series date at right and concealed in lower right filigree curl by Morgan’s signature. Wide full-length vignette of Electricity Presenting Light to the World engraved by G.F.C. Smillie. This version slightly different from the 1896 final version. Darker printing and the bulb held aloft is differently shaped. Hessler SCE16 FD, page 111.The Hessler Plate Note. Rarity-7. This is a complex series of proofs and essays. This example matches the Hessler Plate Note for this sub-variety best for the details around the light bulb. This is a very desirable essay from the earlier dated, 1895 series and a magnificently printed example. The note was last sold in November 1990 and has been off the market since that time, housed in this private collection. Very light central fold in the India paper and handling. Looks like a Gem. A showpiece and highlight in this collection of Federal Proofs.



The Bank of St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri. Ten Dollars. 1850s. Proof. Gem Uncirculated. SOLD $20700


Plate B. Printed on India paper, mounted on original archive book card. Imprint of Danforth, Wright & Co., Philad. & New York. Deep red lathe tint overall with protector TEN bottom center upon micro-lettered repeating TEN pattern. Top center, long line of steamships at the water’s edge being unloaded, amazing perspective running up the riverbank. Lower left, man dressing leather. Lower right, portrait of Col. O. Fallon. Upper left corner, X counter with snowflakes. Upper right corner, 10 counter with petal cycloidals. Haxby MO-50 G4aa Unlisted, different imprint and red tinting. Rarity-7. Certainly not the rarest full color proof in the auction, but debatably one of the central vignettes. Yet another classic American image of the 1850s period, a reminder of Mark Twain’s prose and legacy in the canon of American literature. Every feature of the note is in perfect harmony, from the rich color to the vignettes and intricate counters. There were only four examples on the original sheet this came from in the 1990 ABN sale, which was plated in color in the sale catalogue on page 140. One position is locked into a private collection. The “A,” top position proof from this former ABN Sale sheet realized $4,600 at Schingoethe Part 3 in Memphis, 2005. In the five years since that Memphis sale, stellar looking rarities such as this have generally shown some upside along the way.


Stack’s Sells $5 Million in Americana Rare Coin Sale!

Over the last two days, Stack’s held its annual January Americana in its private gallery in New York City. The sale began with a packed auction room and saw spirited and competitive bidding throughout both sessions.

Over 3,000 lots were sold, and $5 million worth of material changed hands. Properties from over 125 consignors were showcased in this sale, and included items from the Manhattan Collection, the Maryland Historical Society, the Clinton Sherwood Ward Collection of U.S. Gold Coins, Clem Schettino Collection of New Jersey Coppers, the Museum of the Fur Trade, the Alan Bleviss Collection of Civil War Tokens, Part III, and medals from the family of Charles E. Barber.

American Paper Currency began the sale, and Obsolete Currency led the way. The second lot of the sale was an exceptionally rare California and Salt Lake Mail Line $10 note, a note that was not represented in the Ford Collection and is only the second of its kind that we have catalogued. This very rare type is in Very Fine condition and sold for $18,400. Hawaiian obsolete currency offered the rare six-piece set of Lahainaluna Seminary scrip notes, a beautiful set of “token” currency that sold for $14,375. Obsolete notes also featured the exceedingly rare and important Union Bank of Missouri $5 note issued from the branch in Kansas City that sold for $8,050. New York notes showcased a breathtaking Ontario County Bank $1 Proof note from Phelps, NY that was once part of the Ford Collection. This Gem Uncirculated note sold for an impressive $8,625.

Colonial currency lots boasted the extremely rare New York 1709 Twenty Five Shillings in Very Fine condition. Only 800 notes of this denomination were authorized, and competition for this prize was fierce to the tune of $17,250. Vermont colonials offered the newly discovered example of the 1781 Half a Crown note. This item, graded Fine-15 by PMG, came to us via the Museum of the Fur Trade and was reportedly obtained in the Washington, D.C. area in the 1960s before that. It joined a new collection after a top bid of $12,650. (more…)