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German American Banknote Collection Featured in the Stack’s Bowers March Baltimore Currency Auction

By Brad Ciociola, Currency Specialist

Author: Brad Ciociola / Thursday, March 01, 2018 / Categories: Paper Money of the Week

The Stack’s Bowers Galleries March Baltimore currency auction will feature fascinating National Currency notes from the German American Banknote Collection. This collection, assembled by a private collector over the course of about 50 years, includes 55 notes from banks with German-American ownership. Our consignor sought to capture the story of German immigration to America in the 19th century and early 20th century as it was told through National Currency.

The first German immigrants settled in the major metropolitan areas of the East Coast like New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore. German-American banks sprang up in each of those areas. As transportation improved, immigrants pushed further inland, expanding along the Allegheny and Ohio River valleys. There banks like the German National Bank of Cincinnati, Ohio (Charter #2524) and the German National Bank of Allegheny, Pennsylvania (Charter #2261) were opened to serve local German populations. Eventually later waves of German immigrants established communities in the Midwest and banks were established in places like Saint Paul, Minnesota, Oshkosh, Wisconsin and Beatrice, Nebraska. Lastly German banks opened on the West Coast as immigrant waves moved clear across the nation in search of prosperity. There banks were opened from San Diego to San Francisco in California and in the Pacific Northwest in Oregon and Washington.

Among the highlights of the German American Banknote Collection is an 1882 $5 Brown Back from the German National Bank of Beatrice, Nebraska (Charter #4148). That note, lot #20427, is graded Choice Uncirculated 64 by PMG and is estimated to sell for $5,000-$7,000. An 1882 $10 Brown Back from the German National Bank of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin (Charter #4602) is graded Very Fine 30 by PCGS Currency and is estimated at $2,000-$3,000 (lot #20494).

The Stack’s Bowers Galleries Official Currency Auction of the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Spring Expo is being held March 22-23, 2018. To consign to an upcoming Stack's Bowers auction, contact Director of Currency Peter Treglia at [email protected] or Currency Specialist Brad Ciociola at [email protected]​​​