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Early 20th-C. South African 20 Pound Specimen Leads Banknotes & Scripophily Sale

by Special to WorthPoint (05/04/13).

This Standard Bank of South Africa-issue Waterlow color trial banknote, unlisted and circa 1900s was the top lot at an auction (Part XIV) held Apr. 16 by Archives International Auctions. It gaveled for $10,620.

FORT LEE, N.J. – An early 20th century Standard Bank of South Africa color trial specimen banknote for 20 Pounds sold for $10,620 at an auction (Part XIV) held Apr. 16 by Archives International Auctions. The note, printed in blue with gold underprint, was in almost uncirculated condition.

It was also the top lot in an auction that offered 1,163 examples of U.S. and worldwide banknotes, scripophily (the collecting of stocks and bonds) and security printing ephemera. Of those, 665 changed hands, for a sell-through rate of 57 percent. Foreign banknotes comprised the bulk of the sale; 700 lots came up for bid (of which 413 sold, for a 59 percent sell-through rate).

“We were extremely pleased with the results from our April auction,” said Dr. Robert Schwartz of Archives International Auctions. “Many notes sailed past their high estimates, with numerous price records shattered. Now we’re looking forward to our June 4th auction in Fort Lee. It will feature over 1,000 lots of banknotes, coins, scripophily and security printing ephemera with many trophy notes, coins and scripophily being offered.”

Following are additional highlights from the auction (all prices quoted include an 18-percent buyer’s premium):

This Bahamas Government-issued banknote rarity, a 1919 Currency Note Act (1930), brought $5,610.

• Two notes from different countries each had portraits of King George V on the obverse. One was a 1930 Bahamas Government-issued banknote for 10 Shillings, a great rarity in high-grade (Choice VF 35) condition ($5,610). The other was a 1914 United Kingdom-issued note for 60 Piastres / 10 Shillings, with excellent paper quality, bright colors and sharp corners ($3,420).

This United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland 1914-15 treasury note with black overprint in Turkish hammered for $3,420.

• A 1914 Australian-issued banknote for 10 Shillings, one of only five such notes in the PMG census and tied with one other for the highest grade (VF 30) changed hands for $7,080; and a 1938 British Guiana-issued banknote for $5, olive in color and showing a toucan on the left, Kaieteur Falls in the middle and a sailing ship on the right, graded VF 20, brought $1,480.

This high-grade 1918 Australia-issued banknote in a 10 Shillings denomination realized $7,080.

• An unusual and rare 1919 Uzbekistan-issued silk note for 1,000 Tengas, with legends mostly in Arabic script but the denomination expressed in Russian, graded Very Choice VF with minimal fraying, went for $4,430; and a 1940 Tannu Tuva-issued banknote for 1 Aksha, brown on orange underprint and with a graphic of a farmer plowing, graded VF to Choice VF, garnered $4,130.

• A 1919 Shanghai, China specimen banknote for $100, dark brown on green and showing a steamship vignette, with “000000” serial numbers and in choice uncirculated condition, topped out at $3,540.

This Dubuque, Wisconsin Territory $50 obsolete banknote, circa 1830s, graded Choice VG found a new home for $1,890.

• A dramatic and impressive original hand-drawn and colored portrait of Queen Elizabeth II of England, done on an 8-inch by 5-inch advertising card by Fleury, the artist for Waterlow & Sons, sold for $3,300. Fleury designed stamps for the 1935 King George V Silver Jubilee Issue for England. The card was titled on top, “Coronation Year 1953” and was in extra fine condition.

• A 1918 $2 Federal Reserve Bank Note with two-digit serial number (D92A), and with great color and embossing at the margins, graded Very Choice New 64, with only some slight teller handling, knocked down at $3,070; and an 1879 $500 First Mortgage 7 percent specimen bond for the Long Island Railroad, with detached coupons, in fine condition, breezed to $1,240.

A U.S. Department of the Interior 1894 Cherokee Nation bond for “Cherokee Outlet” gaveled for $1,650.

• A Seychelles issued banknote for 10 Rupees, dated Jan. 1, 1967 and showing Queen Elizabeth II, in gem uncirculated condition, fetched $2,840; an 1894 Nicaraguan issued note for 10 Pesos, graded PMG 8 VG NET, achieved $2,360; and a 1945 5-Kroner issued banknote from Greenland depicting a polar bear on ice, in remarkable gem uncirculated condition, made $1,890.

• An unlisted specimen banknote from India for 2 Rupees (1969-1970), red-violet colored, with large margins, bright colors and a fresh appearance to go with a choice uncirculated (and claims to gem) condition, soared to $2,360.

• A Dubuque (Wisconsin Territory) $50 obsolete banknote from circa the 1830s, showing allegorical nude women with eagles and cherubs with a horse, in choice very good condition, hammered for $1,890; and an 1894 four percent certificate of ownership specimen in the amount of $10,000 for the “Cherokee Outlet” (a strip of land in the Oklahoma Territory) brought $1,650.

An early Southern issued banknote for $500 (1839, Jackson, Miss.), with graphics of Native American figures and a steamboat, payable at 5 percent, in uncirculated condition, went for $800; and a Civil War issued banknote dated Sept. 2, 1861 (Richmond, Va.), T-31 $5 Issued note, black with a red protector, attractive and rare and graded well at PMG Very Fine 20, crossed the block for $1,300.

Archives International Auctions’ next big sale will be on June 4, in Fort Lee. Highlights will include an early Peru specimen banknote from Banco de Londres Mexico Y Sud America, a Mercantile Bank of India, Hong Kong rarity, a unique Boston Sub-Marine & Wrecking Company issued stock certificate (1854), and new to the collecting community encased postage including a lovely example of Burnett’s Standard Cooking Extracts; Colonial coins; Indian Cent Proofs and much more.

To learn more about this and the upcoming auctions, call 201.944.4800, e-mail to info@archivesinternational.com or visit Archives International Auctions website.


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