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Non-standard 'C' oddity spotted on note

By Peter Huntoon

Tom Conklin spotted the non-standard 'C' in the right serial number on this Series of 1929 note owned by Matt Draiss from The First National Bank of Windham, N.Y., charter 12164.


As shown on the blowup at right, the normal C in the left serial has a distinctive bent-in appearance and is the same as found in all currency serial numbers from this era regardless of class that employed a C. This is the first time I have seen this oddity.


Obviously, what happened is that someone swapped in a prefix letter wheel into the right hand serial number head that sported the non-standard C.

All the notes from the number 2 Windham sheet are reported, but the only other one in the National Currency Foundation census with a photo is the D note, and there is nothing distinctively different about the D in the right serial. It will be interesting to learn if there is anything different about the other four letters.

The note illustrated here was not numbered at the beginning of the Series of 1929 despite its low sheet serial number. The Windham bankers didn’t begin issuing 1929 notes until 1932.

Their first and only printing of $5 type 1 sheets, which consisted of sheets 1 through 518, was received from the Bureau of Engraving and Printing at the Comptroller of the Currency’s office on Nov. 22, 1932. By then, the numbering machines had been in use for more than three years, so there was plenty of opportunity for wear and repair. Sheets 1 through 166 were shipped to the bank on Nov. 29.

There should be many other examples of the non-standard C from printings for other banks. The same thing may have occurred on other classes of currency of that vintage as well.

If you find one, please send a scan to

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

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