Discovery Montana Territory national bank note sells for $35,250 in Aug. 7 auction

Note was one of only 2,250 First Charter $5 Territorial notes issued by the bank before Montana became a state in 1889.
By , Coin World
Published : 08/14/14
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A discovery note from the First National Bank of Miles City, Montana Territory sold for $35,250 in the Stack’s Bowers paper money Rarities Night auction Aug. 7.

The auction was part of the official auctions conducted at the American Numismatic Association World Fair of Money in Rosemont, Ill., Aug. 5 to 9.

The price includes the buyer’s premium.

The 1875 $5 territorial national bank note graded PCGS Currency Very Fine 30.

The note was one of only 2,250 First Charter $5 Territorial notes issued by the bank before Montana became a state in 1889. The bank liquidated in July 1924.

Gen. Nelson A. Miles was commander of Fort Keough, in Montana Territory. In 1877, according to the auction catalog, Miles, tiring of the drunkenness of his soldiers, threw the sutlers, who provided the fort’s “liquid stock,” out of the camp.

That group of merchants joined with Miles’ nephew George to found Miles City, Montana Territory. By July 1882 the national bank received its federal charter. Until this recent discovery, no territorial notes were known from this bank. The note bears the penned signature of George Miles as the bank’s vice president. 

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