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Finest Known $50 National Gold Bank Note

San Francisco, CA - $50 Original National Gold Bank Note Fr. 1160 The First National Gold Bank Ch. # 1741
This incredible rarity was one of the highlight items of the Flynn Collection, which is where our consignor obtained it five years ago. It is worthwhile to reprint our description in that sale, which read: "This note is one of the irreplaceable highlights of Tom Flynn's collection. Five examples of this San Francisco $50 National Gold Bank Note are listed in the Kelly and Gengerke censuses, along with the unique 1875 example which is in the ANA museum. Of those five Original Series notes, one is graded as 'Good' and has not been available since a 1998 auction appearance; a second is graded Very Good in Kelly and Very Fine in Gengerke, but has not been seen in over forty years since a 1965 auction appearance; a third was last offered on a 1975 fixed price list and has not appeared since; and the fourth was a laminated specimen from the Farouk holdings that was destroyed in an unfortunate laboratory accident. That leaves this piece, which traces its pedigree back to the holdings of the late Amon Carter, Jr. As Tom tells the story, he approached Amon's table at the ANA show in 1973 to look at Amon's display of treasures, and expressed an interest in this $50 National Gold Bank Note. To his amazement, Amon offered to let a fellow collector enjoy the opportunity of owning such a rarity, and quoted Tom a price. Tom had never spent anywhere near the price quoted and asked for a few minutes to think over the deal, which Amon graciously granted. After speaking with a few currency veterans, Tom quickly determined that this was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, and hurried back to complete the transaction. It was the first significant rarity that Tom acquired, and considering how rare this note has proved to be, represents perhaps his best buy ever. If this note were a $5 National Gold Bank Note rather than a Fifty, it would still be a standout, with great color, a exceptionally bright red overprint, and a lovely gold coin vignette on the reverse. Any estimate here is strictly a speculation, since no example near this quality has been offered in over forty years, but with the popularity of truly rare notes and the realization that the mid-six figures represents a small price to pay for numismatic treasures that can never be duplicated, a reasonable figure for this lovely Very Fine specimen seems to be $300,000-$500,000." Our estimate was right on the money, with the note realizing $373,750. Five years later this note is now encased in a PCGS Apparent Very Fine 35 holder, with the Apparent grade assigned because of a couple of small repaired edge tears. The census has not changed one bit, and this remains the finest of the five pieces extant.
From The Greensboro Collection Part II

View all of [The Greensboro Collection Part II ]

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Auction Info

Auction Dates
April, 2013
24th-28th Wednesday-Sunday
Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 2,414

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