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PMG Gem Uncirculated 65 EPQ Bank of Canada 1935 $25 Commemorative Note to be Offered

By Matt Quinn, Assistant Director of Currency

Author: Matt Quinn / Wednesday, May 07, 2014 / Categories: Paper Money of the Week

Stack’s Bowers Galleries is pleased to present a Gem Uncirculated 65 EPQ Bank of Canada 1935 $25 commemorative note in our official World’s Fair of Money auction, this August in Chicago. It features one of the most truly iconic designs used on Canadian paper money. The series as a whole was short lived and quickly replaced with the 1937 notes featuring mostly portraits of King George VI. The denomination is special, as it has seldom been utilized by any country; most notably the Cayman Islands law of 1971 and 1974 issues come to mind. These Bank of Canada notes are several times rarer than those later issued Cayman notes featuring portraits of Queen Elizabeth II. This special design was used to celebrate King George V’s Silver Jubilee.

The 1935 $25 denomination was prepared in two different fashions --  English and French text versions. This followed suit with the other issued denominations. The French types are rarer when compared to the English notes. All other denominations of the 1935 series are found without a printed month and day while these $25 notes show with a May 6, 1935 date. Interestingly the notes were released four days prior to the printed date on May 2nd. The denomination is the only one of the series to feature a dual portrait with King George V and Queen Mary at left and right respectively. A royal purple color was utilized on the face with protectors at lower left and right with “TWENTY-FIVE,” at each side and the signatures of Osborne-Towers.  The back enjoys the same color as the face, highlighted by a detailed vignette of Windsor Castle with the Thames River in the foreground.

This special issue was printed in limited quantity, with a scant 140,000 English pieces printed and only 20,000 French Text notes released. The 26th edition of the Charlton Standard Catalogue of Canadian Government Paper Money indicated only 1,840 of these notes are still outstanding. When these designs are featured at major auctions they typically create a strong buzz among those who collect Canadian paper money, as they are somewhat of a market indicator when sold in Gem states of preservation. An example publicly offered last month was certified Gem Uncirculated 65 EPQ by PMG. The note saw feverish bidding and brought a record for the grade $35,250. We are excited to give another collector the opportunity to secure such an iconic note in our Official Auction of the 2014 ANA World’s Fair of Money.