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    Extremely Rare $1000 "Five-Twenty" Issued and Redeemed Registered Bond

    United States - Acts of July 17th and August 5th, 1861 $1000 6% Registered Bond. Hessler X130D. Issued and Redeemed. PCGS About New 53.
    The Demand Notes issued by these acts are well known and listed in Friedberg. However, these bonds are incredibly rare and important instruments of Civil War financing. This is the second time we have handled this example, and it is one of only two issued and redeemed $1,000 bonds we know of. These were referred to as "five-twenties" since they were redeemable "at the pleasure of the government after five years," and required full payment at the end of 20 years. This "Five-Twenty" originally came from an upstate New York estate prior to our offering in January 2017 where Mike acquired it.

    When war with the South broke out in the Spring of 1861, the finances of the Federal government were in precarious shape. As the scope of the conflict became more clear, it was evident that the costs of equipping and arming their newly raised forces far outstripped the resources on hand, leaving printing money or borrowing as the only alternatives. The former was accomplished with the advent of the so-called Greenbacks, which were made Legal Tender without any metallic backing, and the latter with the creation of the Five-Twenties, which could be paid for with Greenbacks, and raised money directly from the public. Eventually there were four separate issues of Five-Twenties, with the bonds paying 6 percent interest per annum. When they first became available, Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase arranged to place the bonds with brokers, but few were sold. Chase then approached Jay Cooke of Philadelphia, and Cooke and Company proceeded to sell hundreds of millions of dollars of Five-Twenties during the course of the war, with massive bond rallies held in most northern cities and towns. In fact, it is estimated that as much as five percent of the northern population invested in these bonds, which had a face value of as little as $50, an amazing feat in a country where fewer than 1 percent of the population even maintained a bank account.

    Engraved and printed by the American Bank Note company on two sides. A registered bond; therefore, there are no interest coupons. At top center, an oval portrait of George Washington is flanked by flags, with all supported by the curving title. A large gray LOAN of 1862 is across the bottom. The back has a brown transfer form, and is in a style similar to most Federal loans from the 1840s onward. Issued and transferred later on the verso. Signed as "Act." Register of the Treasury. Initialed at the left.

    A crisp bond with handling. There is a hole cancel at bottom center as noted by PCGS. The left end is cut inward as cancelled. This bold example is the finer of the two seen. The other was the John Herzog piece sold in August 2018. Ex: our 2017 FUN sale, lot 23007 (realized $17,625). An essential bond issue and high denomination used directly for Civil War financing and included in the Demand Note enactments.
    From The Mike Coltrane Collection.




    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2021
    24th-25th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 293

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