Polar Bear Notes by Brad Ciociola – Currency Specialist, Stack’s Bowers Galleries ……
Obsolete currency collectors are often drawn to notes with visually striking and dramatic vignettes. Notes from the Continental Bank of Boston have provided collectors with green and black printed remainders that feature bold vignettes and have been popularly collected for years – Polar Bear Notes. The March Stack’s Bowers Galleries currency auction features an uncut $1-$1-$2-$3 sheet of remainders from the Continental Bank graded Choice Uncirculated 64 by PMG.
As freezing arctic air has swept across much of the country, the image found on the $3 Continental Bank note from this sheet seems particularly appropriate. Titled “The White Bear”, the vignette by American Bank Note Company (ABNC) engraver F.O.C. Darley displays four men in a small boat about to be overturned by an attacking polar bear. The scene is one of the most recognizable in all of obsolete currency, if not American currency as a whole. The type is listed as No. 24 in 100 Greatest American Currency Notes by Q. David Bowers and David Sundman. Sheets from the Continental Bank have become increasingly scarce in recent years as many have been cut into individual notes.
The sheet, offered as lot 3068 in our March auction, is estimated at $3,000-$5,000 USD. The Stack’s Bowers Galleries March auction is scheduled for March 24-26, 2021. For more information about the sale or to consign to a future auction event contact Director of Currency Peter Treglia at [email protected] or Currency Specialist Brad Ciociola at [email protected].
The Stack’s Bowers Galleries February 2021 Collectors Choice Online (CCO) Auction is currently ongoing, running February 23 through 25. For more information on viewing lots or for assistance in registering to bid, contact [email protected].