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One paper money advantage over coins

“Leaving a paper trail” is device for accountants or investigators to find out where the money went.

In the case of actual collectors of paper money, the paper trail is vital in knowing the history of a particular bank note you might be considering buying.

If you are buying a high-grade note, it might interest you to discover that it had sold before as a lower grade note. Figuring this out is possible because notes have serial numbers that can be recorded and traced.

Assembling this information, or blazing the paper trail, is Martin Gengerke, a professional in the field who originally introduced the Gengerke Census and now is taking it one step further called the Gengerke Census Lite.

It is geared to coin dealers and paper money newcomers to help them identify a note and assess its rarity. It offers a complete census of large-size type notes issued before the conversion to small-size notes in 1929. It also offers a complete census of National Bank Notes, which were issued by individual banks 1863-1935 with a federal guarantee behind them.

The Gengerke Census Lite is a cheaper alternative at $30 than the version with all the bells and whistles. It comes on a disk and is updated once each year. The full version costs $175 and is updated continuously and can be downloaded over the Internet.

If you have a budding interest in paper money, you might consider e-mailing gengerke@aol.com for more information.

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3 Responses to One paper money advantage over coins

  1. Scott in DC says:

    I had recently listened to your interview on with Martin Gengerke on Coin Chat Radio and forgot to write down the information. Thanks for posting it here!

  2. Bradley R. Hutson says:

    That’s very interesting. I had never thought about that aspect of paper money collecting before.

    Something else I had never thought about before happened to me just yesterday, when I was examining an entire brick of $1 Federal Reserve Notes from the St. Louis District. It was the brick of serial numbers H55744001B through H55745000B. I specifically asked the teller to bring me a brick in which the 4th and 5th digits of the serial numbers were the same (obviously because I wanted the "radar" note it should contain.) As I went through the bills one by one, I knew where to look for the "radar" note of H55744755B, but I also discovered a "star" note in place of what should have been H55744497B. The serial number on the star was L00124384*, from San Francisco. Until that moment, I never knew that bricks from a specific district could contain "star" notes from a different district. I guess I should have surmised that would happen sometimes, since in the past there have been plenty of series of notes in which "star" notes were not produced for all districts, but obviously every district will have a need at some time or other to use star notes. Nobody’s perfect, right?

    That’s off-topic I know, but I thought I would say it anyway. 🙂

  3. johnancyw says:

    We have known Martin Gengerke for about 25 years and no one works harder at tracking and keeping you informed regarding paper money. We are collectors of U. S. Paper Money. We purchased the Gengerke Census at the recently completed IPMS in Memphis. It will keep you up to date with past and current conditions of notes that are being sold via auctions, dealers, collectors, Ebay and other venues. With the prices of U. S. Paper Money, the Gengerke Census could save you a lot of money – if the note you are purchasing has been tampered with. Knowledge is power and you want to be completely informed when buying an expensive numismatic item. Congratulations Mr. Gengerke on a great job with this wonderful census of notes. Yours in Numismatics, John and Nancy

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