Memphis [mem-fis]. Noun. Term used by paper money aficionados to
describe an annual show dedicated to paper currency held anywhere in
the United States in June.
Even though this year’s International Paper Money Show was held in
Kansas City, Mo., instead of Memphis, Tenn., for the first time in 41
years, “Memphis” was what many attendees were reflexively calling the
June 8 to 11 event. The change in location did not seem to have an
impact. The location was convenient, the crowds were no less, the
bourse floor was active and the educational sessions well-attended. No
complaints were heard and most participants seemed to welcome the
change of venue.
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Four floor auction sessions were conducted by Lyn Knight Currency
Auctions, two for world notes and two for those of the United States.
The sales included the usual mix of floor, book, and Internet bids,
with a focus on collectible notes, errors and national bank notes.
Most of the errors were a continuation of the collection offered by
Knight at the Professional Currency Dealers Association show in March.
Many again went for more than their estimated prices. Leading them all
with a hammer price of $62,500 plus buyer’s fee was one of only two
known double-denomination $50/$100 Brown Back national bank notes.
This one, with a grade of Paper Money Guaranty Fine 12 was from Kansas
City’s Aetna National Bank. The only other error of this type is from
a bank in the New Mexico Territory, and it is in the American
Numismatic Association Museum.
The top small-size error was a unique Friedberg 1921-B* Series 1995
$1 Federal Reserve note with a grade of PCGS Currency Choice New 64
that sold for $7,500. The catalog says this is the only Type II star
replacement note with an inverted overprint known for any
denomination. The Type II designation refers to the presence of an
adjacent portion of another note at the top edge. This note last sold
for $5,175 in 2011.
A bid of $7,000 won a spectacular PCGS Currency Gem New 66 error
that is so convoluted in the manner in which the paper folded before
printing that you cannot tell what series it belongs to.
A Gem Uncirculated Series 1976 $2 Federal Reserve note (F-1935-H)
with the back completely blank realized $4,250.
A note that at $3,250 more than tripled its estimate was a PCGS
Currency Choice About Uncirculated 58 F-1910-B Series 1977A $1 Federal
Reserve note from New York with a printed tear that resulted with
Washington’s portrait being split in two.
The charm of the Morgan dollar, plus a look at
the largest U.S. gold coin to circulate:
Another column in the July 3 Coin World takes a look at the
whimsical names of the $2 Federal Reserve note
At $2,250 against a $750 to $1,500 estimate was an F-1915-C Series
1988A $1 Federal Reserve note from the Philadelphia district with an
ink smear on the back that floods the entire surface area of the note
including the margins. The catalog calls it one of the finest ink
smears known. It had a PCGS Currency grade of AU-50 with an edge tear.
More than 30 error lots exceeded $1,000.
National bank notes
Three First Charter Period Series 1875 national bank notes surpassed
$60,000. One was an F-460 $100 issue from the Streator National Bank
(Illinois) that brought $77,500 in Very Fine/Extremely Fine. It is one
of two of the denomination from the state. A Wyoming Territory $20
note (F-434) from the First National Bank of Cheyenne (Wyoming) that
was once owned by Amon Carter and graded Very Fine realized $72,000.
It is one of only six Series 1875 $20 territorials known. A $50 note
from the Second National Bank of Danville (Illinois), F-451, sold at
$65,000 in VF/XF.