Ultra-Quality $20 “Technicolor Note”

Stack’s Bowers Galleries is proud to offer a Series of 1905 $20 Large Size $20 Gold Certificate, Friedberg 1180 in our upcoming official auction of the World’s Fair of Money, next week in Rosemont, Illinois. Our United States Currency session begins on August 15th, at 6:00PM Central Time in Room 4 of the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. We hope you can join us in person or online for this exciting evening of paper money.

Lot 3374, one of the highlights of the evening, is an Ultra-Quality example of the famous “Technicolor Note,” in this case graded Superb Gem New 67 PPQ by PCGS. The face of the Series of 1905 $20 has a vignette of George Washington, engraved by Alfred Sealey, and bright red Treasury seal and serial numbers. The field is gold and includes a $20 emblem. This splash of color has prompted the nickname "Technicolor Note," never mind that that color film process had not been invented by 1905. (However, color images were hardly novel, and Thomas Edison used color in his first films of 1894). On the back, engraved by Robert Ponickau, the Heraldic Eagle reverse of the Great Seal of the United States is depicted at the center, with ornately engraved borders, the entire printed in orange-gold. This back was continued on the later large-size Gold Certificate series. The orange-gold color tended to fade with age, especially if a note was exposed to light. Today, notes with a bright back are worth more than those with faded color, regardless of the grade. The offered note is superb in this regard. Watch the Technicolor fireworks light up the numismatic sky when this crosses the block!

Lot viewing for this and all the other coins, tokens, medals, and paper money to be offered in our American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money auction will be held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, Room 1 & 2, from August 9 through 17.

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