Paper Money

Discovery $5 national bank note in Aug. 7 Stack's Bowers sale

1875 $5 First National Bank of Miles City, Montana Territory note, graded Very Fine 30, in Stack's Bowers Galleries Aug. 7 sale during the ANA convention in Rosemont, Ill.

This year both Heritage Auctions and Stack’s Bowers Galleries will be hosting official auctions throughout the American Numismatic Association World Fair of Money in Rosemont, Ill., which runs from Aug. 5 to 9.

On Aug. 6 Stack’s Bowers will hold its Rarities Night auction and offer a discovery note, an 1875 $5 note of the First National Bank of Miles City, Montana Territory, graded Very Fine 30 by PCGS Currency, will be offered in the Aug. 7 auction by Stack's Bowers.

This 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 is bright and evenly circulated and bears the penned signature of George Miles as the bank’s vice president.

The note has an estimate of $35,000 to $55,000. 

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