Numerous examples of notes show criminally minded individuals played loose and free with bank names in an attempt to defraud the careless. However, sometimes it all worked out for the best. Take, for example, State Bank of Indiana and the Bank of the State of Indiana.
Bank notes provide lots of answers to lots of questions, even when it comes to trends that might seem specific to life in modern times. The Asian nation of Mongolia has an ancient answer to today’s tiny house trend. Just pick up a 500-tugrik note to see what it is.
Paper money acceptance has historically been based on the fact that it was backed by something other than “the full faith and credit” of the issuer. Because paper really has no value in and of itself, the willingness to accept it was often based on the belief that you could ask for the equivalent of its face value in hard money; usually silver or gold coins.
World War II era lottery tickets and ephemera related to the German social welfare program known as Winterhilfswerk (known by its initials WHW and translated roughly as the “Winter Fund” or “Winter Help Work”) is collectible today.
When it came time to produce notes, without asking too many questions, for customers that “weren’t quite right," Waterman L. Ormsby, who was a talented engraver and inventor, always tended to be close by.
Watermarks are frequently used today as counterfeit deterrents. Watermarks are designs added to the paper when it is made that, when held up to the light, reveal some type of design or portrait. If we look at obsolete notes that were in circulation prior to the Civil War, however, we find that the use of watermarked paper was a seldom chosen option. There were...
Not satisfied with using vignettes of trains, maidens, steamboats and the like, some of the folks in charge of picking art subjects for their notes picked things that were seemingly “out there.” A Bank of Louisiana $20 note has an image recalling ancient times.
Let’s say you’re collecting topically, like notes with locomotives or steamboats or Indians. A number of specialty volumes complement the basic state catalogs.
Obsolete notes and scrip were issued by thousands of issuers with a dizzying array of different denominations and designs. To complicate things, counterfeiters and other criminals had a field day producing counterfeits and other types of fraudulent notes. The best resources and references will vary depending on the area of interest to collectors.
The penalty for counterfeiting has often been death, and the first Confederate to violate counterfeiting laws was hanged for his crime.