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Collector Pays $2.3M for $1,000 Bill

December 15, 2006

DALLAS – An art collector has paid about $2.3 million for a $1,000 U.S. bill printed in 1890, the auction house that brokered the transaction between two anonymous private collectors said Friday.

“This $1,000 bill is one of only two known of its type; the other surviving example is in the museum at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco,” said Greg Rohan, president of Dallas-based Heritage Auction Galleries.

He said that type of bank note is known to collectors as a “Grand Watermelon” because the green-striped zeros in the denomination “1,000″ printed on the back of the bill look like watermelons.

“Only two Grand Watermelon examples are known with red-color Treasury Department seals printed on the front; the half-dozen other surviving Grand Watermelon notes have brown seals,” he said in a news release.

The $2,255,000 price is more than double the previous record for an 1890 Grand Watermelon note. The previous record for any bank note was $2.1 million, according to the Heritage Auction Galleries.

Rohan said that the buyer was “a very advanced and sophisticated East Coast collector of art and rare currency.”

On the Net:

Heritage Auction Galleries: http://www.HA.com




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