Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Fr. 376 $50 1891 Treasury Note PMG Very Fine 25. As soon as the Sherman Silver Purchase Act, which called for the issuance of Treasury Notes, was passed on July 14, 1890, the Treasurer, James N. Huston, organized the effort to design and issue them. Designs for the typical denominations $1 to $1000 were prepared; by November 29, the proposed $50 design was completed. Like the famous Watermelon $100 and $1000, the back design featured generously proportioned letters in the word FIFTY, intricately engraved, and in the rich green color synonymous with the nickname, "Greenback." The rich and colorful designs were intended for all the denominations of 1890 Treasury Notes, but before any $50's were printed, the 1891 Series, with its new back designs, had already been introduced: to aid in counterfeit detection, the new designs featured an open back - two large areas of open design in which the colored fibers in the paper could be easily seen. In 1891, the $50 Treasury Note went into production, and 80,000 notes were printed in total. Ultimately only 23,500 of the notes were issued, and they likely were used primarily for large-dollar bank-to-bank transactions involving the purchase of silver. Friedberg indicates that Treasury Records show only 25 notes still outstanding, supporting the theory that they were mostly used in bank-to-bank transactions and subsequently redeemed. Today, the census records 22 examples and with only three unreported examples still outstanding, the Fifty Dollar Seward's status as a classic numismatic rarity is forever protected. Of the current recorded examples, six pieces are permanently impounded in institutional collections limiting the number of collectible examples to only 16. The numismatic community has been lucky to see four examples appear at auction in the last year and a half...but auction appearances are often years apart. The currently offered example was previously the property of Wayte Raymond, and was later part of the James Stack Collection, which was auctioned in 1990. The note is a solid Very Fine that appears problem-free save for somewhat close, irregular margins which have been noted by PMG as, "Margins Trimmed." A solid, affordable example of a type that is represented in only the very finest of collections. The note appears, photographed on both sides, on page 232 of the Dauers' book.
    From The Dr. Edward and Joanne Dauer Collection

    View all of [The Dr. Edward and Joanne Dauer Collection of Treasury Notes and Gold Certificates ]

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2006
    13th-15th Wednesday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 981

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold on Sep 15, 2006 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 15 days left to consign to the 2021 June 23 - 25 HKINF World Paper Money Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I think heritage is the best auction house and has the best service - that’s why I use you. 
    Sara B.,
    Dubai, UAE
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search