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Fantasy note wows at Spink sale

A bid of $33,600 vaulted a $10 Confederate Note to the top of the prices realized list in Spink’s New York sale Oct. 30-31. Price includes a 20 percent buyer’s fee.

A fantasy $10 brought $33,600. (Image courtesy & © Spink New York)

Now called a fantasy issue because it was likely a contemporary counterfeit, the note carries an incorrect issue date of September 2, 1862, and misspelled printer name “Keatings [sic] & Ball.”

But it is hugely collectible because it was included as T-48 in Grover Criswell’s Confederate catalog. It was graded PMG 55 About Uncirculated.

Three Montgomery notes also from “A Midwestern Gentleman’s Collection of CSA & Southern States Notes” were other highlights.

These issues were printed in New York by the National Bank Note Company in the brief interval between a Confederate government being established in February 1861 and the outbreak of war in April.

The CSA $500 (P-3, Cr-2, PF-1) realized $6,600 at Spink’s October auction. (Image courtesy & © Spink New York)

The $500 (cataloged by Spink as P-3, Cr-2, PF-1) is hand-dated June 21, 1861. It depicts a train crossing a bridge at center while cattle graze below.

Graded PMG Very Fine 20 NET, the catalog makes clear that “several portions of the note have been repaired or replaced (a portion of the left end, a small piece out of the top, and the lower right corner). Some edge splits have also been repaired.” The note realized $6,600 on a $7,500-$12,500 estimate.

CSA $100 (P-2, Cr-2, PF-1) dated May 16, 1861. In a desirable PMG 50 About Uncirculated Net grade, it fetched $10,800. (Image courtesy & © Spink New York)

Next was the $100 (P-2, Cr-2, PF-1) with a date of May 16, 1861. On the face, Minerva supervises a railway goods yard. This note has been off the market since 2003 when purchased by the consignor.

It has been previously mounted with the back bearing an annotation and the signature of R. Williams. Apart from a little age toning in the lower left corner, there are no signs of discoloration. Graded PMG 50 About Uncirculated NET and on an estimate of $15,000-25,000, it was snapped up for $10,800.

CSA $50 (P-1, Cr-4, PF-2) of May 22, 1861. It came endorsed on the standard blank back by A. J. Guirot, Assistant Treasurer of the Confederate States, and took a comfortable $8,400 in PMG Very Fine 25. (Image courtesy & © Spink New York)

A $50 (P-1, Cr-4, PF-2) was the last note type issued out of Montgomery prior to the capital of the Confederacy being moved to Richmond. Dated May 22, 1861, its face vignette shows slaves hoeing cotton.

This note was endorsed on the back, “N. Orleans June 10, 1861 A. J. Guirot Asst Trs CS [Assistant Treasurer of the Confederate States].” In a most collectable PMG Very Fine 25, it was bid up to $8,400 on a $7,500-$12,500 estimate.

Full catalog details and hammer prices are available from www.spink.com.


This article was originally printed in Bank Note Reporter. >> Subscribe today.


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