Paper Money

Major collection of Confederate bonds offered in upcoming sale

Estimated to sell for more than $4,000 in Fine to Very Fine in Lyn Knight Currency Auction’s Nov. 17 auction is an unissued and unsigned $100 bond from the Act of May 16, 1861, of which only eight are known.

Images courtesy of Lyn Knight Currency Auctions.

One of the most significant offerings of Confederate bonds and fiscal documents to be sold at auction since the Frederick R. Mayer Collection of Confederate Banknotes and Bonds at the 2007 Memphis paper money show will be conducted by Lyn Knight Currency Auctions in Overland Park, Kansas, on Nov. 17.

The Montgomery Collection of Confederate Bonds and Fiscal Documents was assembled by a collector over a 50-year period and has 512 lots with many Confederate bond rarities. There are over 300 different types and varieties of Confederate bonds and when there are duplicates, it was because the collector wanted either a lower serial number or better condition example. There are 43 examples of bonds with the serial numbers of 10 or lower, including nine different serial number 1 bonds and five different serial number 2 bonds. There are also many examples that the auctioneer says deserve further research and include varieties with serial number ranges outside what was previously documented for those issues.

The first Confederate bonds were issued in Montgomery, Alabama, the Confederacy’s first capital, when it was formed in February 1861 by the seven states that had seceded from the Union. The capital was moved to Richmond, Virginia, in May 1861.

Sale highlights include six different examples of the Feb. 28, 1861, Montgomery issues of the $50 to $1,000 denominations, all printed by American Bank Note Company in New Orleans, and three examples with the location changed to Richmond. Estimated to sell for more than $4,000 in Fine to Very Fine is an unissued and unsigned $100 bond from the Act of May 16, 1861, of which only eight are known.

Another highlight is a handwritten $500,000 bank note loan certificate issued on Oct. 26, 1861, with an embossed seal at center left in Fine condition with a pair of holes. Of approximately 80 issued, there are 11 to 20 now known.

Also offered is an Act of Feb. 17, 1864, $8,000 bond with serial number 15, which is unique in this denomination; and a serial number 1 $100,000 bond from the Act of Feb. 17, 1864.

An Act of April 21, 1862, $1,000 bond, numbered with the last serial number 1000 representing the last of the 1,000 printed, is especially historic. It is signed on the back by James Murray Mason, who was forcibly removed from the British mail steamer Trent by the U.S. Navy, precipitating an international incident with Britain, known as the Trent Affair. This is one of four certificates obtained by John J. Ford Jr., who acquired numbers 997 to 1000, from the Erlanger firm in London in the late 1950s.

Among the dozens of additional rare bonds are many that have not appeared at auction in decades and some making their first appearances at auction ever.

Lyn Knight Auctions is holding the sale in association with Archives International Auctions. Robert Schwartz, president of Archives International, said in a press release: “Archives International Auctions is privileged to offer this historic collection of C.S.A. scripophily, in association with Lyn Knight Currency Auctions, that is sure to attract intense interest from beginning to advanced collectors and dealers, with many of these bonds rarely if ever appearing at auction.”

The online catalog and Live Bidding Platform is at and can also be viewed as a Virtual Catalog or a Live Linked downloadable PDF on the website.

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