Genuine or look-alike paper notes began to be used in the 1800s to advertise services and products

From "Getting the word out" in July 7, 2014, issue of Coin World
Published : 06/19/14
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Editor's note: The following is the second 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.

Advertising propaganda money promotes 'wonder cures'

Advertising notes can be made from cash look-alikes and that puts them into the broad category of propaganda money. 

Advertising notes handed out by traveling salesmen who roamed the United States in the late 1800s have been a part of America’s culture for more than a century. Many manufacturers of so-called “wonder cures” made use of advertising notes.

The example of an advertising note illustrated here has a design on the face that looks like a genuine 1864 $10 Confederate States of America note.

However, for the person who looks closely, there’s a clue at the bottom of the face design. A notation indicates the piece is a FAC SIMILE.

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