As an expert on American currency I see a lot of interesting bank notes. I am often the last resort for people hoping to prove their item is authentic even though they have already been told countless times that what they have is fake. To be fair, there have been occasions where people have been told they had a copy or fantasy item and I was able to share the good news that their item was a rare variety and very valuable. However, for every 99 times that happens, I see stuff like the pictures below.
These “unique” items have all been emailed over the past few days. I see many fakes and reproductions on a daily basis, but these were new to me.
First we have the green seal 1918 $1,000 note. This has the same serial number as the example used in early paper money reference books. The image of the authentic note in the book has been copied and used for bookmarks and other items. Typically though they are seen as laminated black and white versions. This one is not laminated and it has a green seal and serial numbers.
Next we have a very curious item. It is supposed to be an 1899 $2 silver certificate. The design appears to just be a very rough black and white copy of the real thing. For some reason though the forgers decided to use green seals and serial numbers. The real deal would have blue seals and serial numbers. Not only is the color wrong, but the size and font style is incorrect as well. Even the serial number lettering convention is off. This is definitely a sorry attempt at creating a deceiving fake.
We actually see a lot of these copies. This is supposed to be an 1861 $10 demand note. There is just one problem. It doesn’t have any color and it is also missing the red serial number. It is amazing to us that someone could think this was a real bank note from the 1860s, but they still confuse people on a daily basis.