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1804 "Bon Scrip"

Image Information

Type Currency
Title 1804 "Bon Scrip"
Date December 1, 1804
Country United States
Grade PCGS Very Fine 25
Service PCGS
Denomination 18 piasters
Description (Upper Louisiana) - Sam'l Solomon "Bon Scrip" for 18 Piasters Current Money to Mr. O'Hara St. Louis, December 1, 1804. PCGS Very Fine 25. A second very rare and important "Bon scrip." It is key documentation from early St. Louis and Missouri currency and financial history. A choice example again, this is issued by Samuel Solomon and payable to William O'Hara. Both men figured prominently in early St. Louis commerce. On page 166 of the 5th edition of The Early Paper Money of America, Newman describes Solomon as "an intelligencer from Canada of Jewish descent" who was employed by a number of businesses in St. Louis. Records show that from 1801 to 1817, he was involved in trade and treaties with a number of Native American tribes, acting at times as an interpreter or witness. In 1810 and 1811, he provided financial backing, listed as "Security," for fur traders granted licenses by the Territorial government ("The Life and Papers of Frederick Bates," accessed via William O'Hara, along with partner James Canfield, eventually became the founder of the Missouri Exchange Bank (initially headquartered in Auguste Chouteau's building). Hand accomplished in French, issued by Solomon to O'Hara. Laid paper, approx. 10.5 cm x 9.3 cm. The small format used was easy to carry. The note is very bright from the face. The folds, two horizontal and one vertical, are seen from the blank back that has an indistinct docket at the top. Untrimmed, though the lower left corner is not complete, but in its natural state and away from the "=90." The undated Solomon "current money" Bon in the November 1, 2017 Newman Part VIII sale realized $8,400. This is dated and issued to a significant, future St. Louis banker. These Bon scrip notes comprise a historic offering from the Newman Collection. They are all unique as handmade documents and are significant historical items. French Transcription: Bon pour dix huit Piastre argent Courant payable a Mr. Ohara a St. Louis le 1 Decre. 1804 per fas. [Fran?ois] Liberge -- Sam'l Solomon ==90 Translation: Good for eighteen piastres of current money payable to Mr. Ohara at St. Louis per fas. [Fran?ois] Liberge -- Sam'l Solomon ==90 Docket Back: [indistinct] Ex: Eric P. Newman Numismatic Education Society. From Newman X (Heritage Auctions, November 2018), lot 20133, realized $10200.
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