The American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money held in
August near Chicago lived up to collector expectations, and as far as
paper money was concerned, there was little to be disappointed about.
The selection of high-end notes offered during the ANA convention
was a sign of more to come.
An example of a post-ANA show sale is the Heritage Auction
Galleries Sept. 7 to 9 Signature Currency Auction, conducted during
the Long Beach Coin, Stamp & Collectibles Expo in Long Beach, Calif.
More than 5,600 lots were offered, just about evenly split into
large- and small-size note categories. (All prices quoted here include
the buyer’s fee.)
The highlight lot is one of only five known Series 1882 $50 gold
certificates, Friedberg 1190 (Paper Money of the United
States by Arthur L. and Ira S. Friedberg); the note, graded PCGS
Currency Fine 15, sold for $20,700. This was the first auction of one
of these notes in close to five years.
Also offered, although not nearly as rare (50 examples known), was
a Series 1922 $500 gold certificate, F-1217 — the only Friedberg
number of a 1922 $500 gold certificate. Graded PCGS Currency Very Fine
30 Premium Paper Quality, the note sold for $27,600. Few of these
notes exist in better condition, and it is the only note for this type.
A series number 1 note is always prized, but when it comes with a
story, it is even better. Such is the case with an Extremely Fine
serial number 1 Series 1914 Red Seal $10 Federal Reserve note printed
for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, F-897a, PCGS Currency
Extremely Fine 40 PPQ, which sold for $29,900.
The pedigree of this example traces to the first governor of the
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, M.B. Wellborn, whose signature can be
found on the Federal Reserve Bank notes of that district.
Accompanying the note is a handwritten bank envelope signed by
Wellborn and attesting to his ownership.
A Series 1862 $100 legal tender note, F-165a, the first note to
feature a vignette of an American eagle, graded PCGS Currency Apparent
Very Fine, sold for $69,000. ■