||New York, NY - North River Bank $3 18__ NY-1845 G44 SENC. Proof. PCGS Choice About New 55 Apparent. Obsolete banknotes are laden with nuances, especially so when it comes to their engraving and plate preparation, as with this Rawdon, Wright & Hatch, New-York proof from the 1830s. After the Durand, Perkins & Co. (or DP) dissolved, their dies and rollers were sold to RWH and often incorporated into many of that company's earlier notes. This India paper proof shows several elements indicating the use of DP dies and vignettes. The North River Bank note series are complex, like all long tenured New York banks, due to the banking laws, changing obligations, seals, and other requirements. However, for this title, the reused dies from DP add to the complexity and make the notes interesting to examine carefully. The top center vignette of Mercury seated, as Commerce, on the shore and viewing a ship is sometimes attributed to Asher B. Durand, a member of DP. The New York Comptroller's Seal engraving at the left end with seated Justice and standing Liberty is original work by RWH. At the far right though, there are three portraits from the previous series DP $3 note left end, with Founding Fathers George Washington, John Jay, and Alexander Hamilton from top to bottom, now moved to the right end. Across the center is THREE DOLLARS on intricate lathe work. The small base vignette of a steamboat was also used on several DP notes. Not cancelled, but noted are "Mounting Remnants on the Back; Small Edge tears," and the trimming along the top edge is a bit uneven at the far left and far right. This is a fascinating note and illustrates some of the engraving evolution that occurred in the 1820s-1830s as some firms dissolved and others expanded, depending on who went to work for whom in the banknote engraving business. Ex: Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society.
Realized $1,175.00. Newman VI (Heritage Auctions, 4/2015), lot 19263. Description courtesy of Heritage Auctions.