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    Only Known Massachusetts 1750 $1/8 Note

    Massachusetts 1750 $1/8 PCGS Apparent Very Fine 30.
    A rare note indeed, we had never encountered this denomination prior to the arrival of this note at our offices. The 1750 Massachusetts issue consisted of six different denominations of change bills only. Prior to this issue, there were three different currencies in use from previous issues- Old tenor bills, Middle tenor bills, and New tenor bills. Inflation caused the values of each issue to differ, requiring merchants to use specially printed conversion charts in order to be able to transact business.

    The British government sent Massachusetts 21 tons of Spanish silver coins along with 10 tons of British coppers in 1749 as reimbursement for the assistance provided to the Lewisburg expedition during the French and Indian War. Once Massachusetts-Bay had specie, they passed the currency reform act of 1749, requiring that all outstanding notes be redeemed between March 31, 1750 and March 31, 1751 and securing the new issue with the hard money.

    The new notes included the phrase, Restituit rem, seen encircling the pine tree vignette at right on this example, meaning the situation has been restored. The British did not take kindly to this and passed an act on September 21, 1751 severely limiting the Colony's ability to issue paper money. No additional notes were issued by Massachusetts until May 25, 1775 when the Paul Revere-printed notes were issued in order to pay the soldiers who would soon fight at Bunker Hill.

    This denomination, never seen before by most Colonial enthusiasts, is certain to cause a stir. Beautifully engraved woodcut borders and set type were used. The designs include the previously mentioned pine tree, along with a codfish at bottom center. The signatures of J. Quincy and A. Bordman remain clearly visible. The note has been backed with a piece of paper to reinforce the center split, resulting in the Apparent grade.

    A challenging note to provide an estimate for given its rarity and desirability, but we would expect this note to bring a solid, mid-five-figure price.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2010
    11th-16th Wednesday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,657

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

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