Paper Money

Michigan 'Lazy Deuce' national a discovery note

A Lazy Deuce discovery note from the rare issues of the Second National Bank of Lansing, Michigan, has been sold.

Original images courtesy of Liberty Coin Service.

A Lazy Deuce discovery note from the rare issues of the Second National Bank of Lansing, Michigan, has surfaced, making it only the fifth national bank note of any denomination known from the bank, and the only one of the $2 denomination. 

The Original Series $2 national bank note, Friedberg 387a, is graded Choice Fine 15 by Paper Money Guaranty and was reported by Liberty Coin Service, located in Lansing. Tom Coulson, the firm’s CEO, said the note’s owner was a serious collector from the eastern United States, who sold him the note in part because of his firm’s location.

Three of the other notes known from the Second National Bank, which liquidated in 1884, are $1 issues, two from the Original Series and one from Series 1875. The other is a $5 national of 1875. 

The $1 and $2 notes were printed on the same sheet of four, usually in a combination of $1-$1-$1-$2. 

Coulson said, “The US Government only issued 1,600 of these Original Series $2.00 Notes for the Second National Bank of Lansing. It later issued 230 more Series of 1875 $2.00 notes for the bank, with no known survivors. That makes this note the only known surviving $2.00 Note on any Lansing bank as none of the other banks issued a $2.00.”


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The note has the Treasury signatures of Register Stoddard B. Colby and Treasurer Francis E. Spinner. The bank signatures are of James I. Mead as president and Joseph Mills as cashier, who served in these positions from 1864 to 1867. 

The $2 national bank note is called a “Lazy Deuce” because of the large recumbent number 2 on the face, which also has the vignette Stars and Stripes. The back shows the vignette Sir Walter Raleigh Presenting Corn and Tobacco to the English.

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