||Hastings, MN - Thorne's Bank $2 Sept. 1, 1863 MN-45 G4a SENC Hewitt B180-D2. PCGS Very Fine 20. This is one of the great issued Obsoletes from Minnesota for a number of reasons. We can begin with its immense rarity as this is the only $2 note reported from the bank on the 2006 population report. Collectors are more familiar with issued and punch hole cancelled $1 notes, which number well over a dozen with most in very low, even damaged condition. Its possible uniqueness aside, the note is beautifully engraved and printed by the American Bank Note Co., N.Y. The Thorne's Bank is a private banker title, most often seen on New York State notes. In this case, it was named for James L. Thorne, the bank president, signed by him at lower right and, to add to it all, shows his custom engraved portrait. This Hewitt plate note is just marvelous. At the top center, two cherubs battle across Seated Liberty silver dollars, the left using one as a shield (engraved originally for dies from Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson.) At the lower left is the aforementioned Thorne's portrait and at the lower right is My Horse adapted from Sir Edwin Landseer's painting (Landseer is the sculptor of the lions at the base of Nelson's Column in London). The green security back mimics the initial Federal Legal Tender notes with three large darker shaded dies. The center has the obligation "Secured by the Pledge of Public Stocks of the United States," which indicates this bank's soundness. James L. Thorne emigrated from England at age 20, settling first in Batavia, New York, then moving to Hastings in 1856. In addition to operating this bank, he also served as mayor. There were only $622 in notes left unredeemed in 1869, and the bank was succeeded by the Merchants National Bank of Hastings (charter #1538). A riveting and fascinating issued note. There are no detriments assigned, but for accuracy we note a period-penned numerical annotation in the green field lathe work field on the back. This superb issued note is a treasure from Minnesota. Ex: Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society.
Realized $7,050.00. Newman VI (Heritage Auctions, 4/2015), lot 19148. Description courtesy of Heritage Auctions.