Pennsylvania: January 1, 1756
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    Pennsylvania Currency

    January 1, 1756

    An emission of £ 55,000 in legal tender bills of credit to support military expenditures associated with the French and Indian War. The bills were to be valid until January 1, 1760. This emission and the four subsequesnt emissions (through May 20, 1758) were to be redeemed through taxes rather than through the Pennsylvania Land Office Loan Program (see the introductory essay on Land Office Banks for details on this program). There are four border cuts and the Penn family arms on the front. All denominations were issued with plates A and B and the four higher denominations also include one to four crown symbols based on the denomination. The spelling of the colony name "Pennsylvania" differing by denomination (as "Pensilvania" on the 18d and 5s, "Pennsilvania" on the 1s and 10s, the correct spelling on the 2s6d and 15s and "Pensylvania" on the 2s and 20s notes). It is thought Franklin did this as an anti-counterfeiting device. The back of the notes include a nature print with typeset borders. Printed by Benjamin Franklin and David Hall in Philadelphia. Denominations issued were: 1s, 18d, 2s, 2s6d, 5s, 10s, 15s and 20s.

    obv rev

    20s                  Plate B                     Serial Number: 46,006                 PA 01/01/56

    Signers: faint, possibly John Jervis?, Samuel Neave and Henry Harrison.

    Size: 88 x 70mm (borders trimmed).

    Comments: Signed and numbered in brown ink with the top signature quite faded. Note the use of XX in the upper border cut on the front, it is quite visible on the left side but fairly faded on the right. The Penn family arms appear on the front in the center left, above the arms the denomination is keyed to four crowns. The colony name appears as "Pensylvania ". The palte letter B appears in the lower right corner. On the back there is a crown in each corner to denote the denomination as four crowns (the 5, 10 and 15s notes have 1-3 crowns below Hall's name). The nature print of three fern branchs was first used on this issue. Franklin's only previous 20s issue, for August 10, 1739, used a different set of leaves. Printed by Benjamin Franklin and David Hall.

    Provenance: Purchased through the Robert H. Gore, Jr. Numismatic Endowment from the EAHA mail bid auction of 05/23/98, lot 310, where it was graded as choice very fine.