Insights

Separating fiction from fact concerning modern day propaganda notes and some tips on collecting them

From "Getting the word out" in July 7, 2014, issue of Coin World
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By , Coin World
Published : 06/19/14
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Editor's note: The following is the fourth of a four-part Coin World series about propaganda notes prepared by Michele Orzano for the July 2014 monthly edition of Coin World.

Other posts in the series include:

Something as simple as scribbling a political or social slogan on a piece of cash places the note into the broad category of propaganda notes. That broad category includes everything from deliberate messages to undermine a nation during wartime to using a note look-alike design to catch the eye of a potential customer when advertising a business or service.

Genuine and facsimile U.S. and world notes have been widely used to spread propaganda for decades.

Collecting these items makes for a fun jaunt off the traditional collecting path.

Fed-employee initials stamps: Fact or fiction?

So are those high-denomination Federal Reserve notes that sometimes can be found bearing stamped, written or hand-drawn messages part of the propaganda category?

The answer is yes.

An example is the Series 2004A $20 FRN illustrating this article that the author received in change from a purchase at the local Walmart store.

Stamped initials or symbols like those appearing on this note can be found on $20, $50 and $100 FRNs.

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1 comment
Prior to collecting error coins & currency (both USA & Global), I used to collect early american currency... One of the topics I read back in the 1980's (may have been in Coin World), was a article mentioning that more USA Currency resides outside our Boarders, then here in the States, with numerous Countries preferring our Green Back to their Currency...
As the stamped symbols mentioned above, I had a International Transaction on eBay about 8 or 9 years ago, selling a 500 error coin lot, the high bidder from Republic of China paid with 4 New $100.00 Bills in a plain envelope. I thought it odd as all four notes had oriental style stamps on both front and back... I could only assume it was like "chop marks" used on Early Silver Trade Dollars.