By Q. David BowersCo-founder, Stack’s Bowers ……

Joel R. Anderson Collection - 1875 $50 Note

It is with great pleasure and excitement that we prepare to offer Part II of the Joel R. Anderson Collection of large-size paper money types in our Official Auction of the ANA World’s Fair of Money this August. The catalog is being prepared, featuring many great rarities as well as more affordable notes. Here we feature one of the great rarities, a note that is one of only two examples of the type available to collectors: the Friedberg 153 1875 $50 Legal Tender Note.

  • PCGS Currency Fine 12
  • One of Two in Private Hands

Just four examples of this extremely rare Allison-Wyman signed 1875 $50 Legal Tender Note are known to exist. Of those, the Aubrey Bebee example resides permanently in the ANA Museum Collection while another is forever ensconced in the collection of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. The two privately held examples, this and the serial number A20197 note, are both in the Fine grade range. The A20197 note was last sold publicly for $60,500 in October 1998. The presently offered note was acquired from a November 2007 Stack’s auction for $276,000.

Normal, evenly distributed evidence of circulation is observed on the Anderson Collection example. It displays still boldly inked design elements and mostly sound paper, save for a few minor edge nicks which are to be expected at this grade level. For advanced collectors hoping to secure as many Friedberg numbers as possible this opportunity should not be missed. It has been more than 10 years since this note was last available and it will likely be many more before it comes up for sale again.

$50 Legal Tender Notes, Series of 1875

The design of the Series of 1875 $50 is essentially the same as the 1874-dated notes. The portrait of Benjamin Franklin, engraved by Charles Burt from the Duplessis portrait, is seen at left. Liberty dressed as Columbia is found at right. There are two large pink L protectors left and right at center along with a pink spiked Treasury Seal at bottom center. The back design is the same as on the 1874 notes with the imprint of the Columbian Bank Note Company centered at the bottom. 40,000 examples were issued.


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