State Treasurer John Perdue’s latest on-line unclaimed property auction features a 1902 $5 note issued by the Charleston National Bank.
To view the item, go to www.WestVirginiaUnclaimedProperty.org. It is lot 2917. The auction ends Sept. 10 and consists of items left behind in safe deposit boxes. The Treasurer’s Office keeps safe deposit box contents in hopes of finding the rightful owner, until space constraints make it impossible.
The note in the current auction is classified as a “1902 Blue Seal issued by the Charleston National Bank, Charleston, W.Va.” The note had drawn a top bid of $210 as of Sept. 2.
“As always, I encourage our state residents to log onto the site and see what we have to offer,” Treasurer Perdue said. “Currency, both paper and silver, are always available for bid. Those particularly fond of national bank notes are often in luck.”
In the middle of the Civil War, the federal government established a system of national banks and empowered them to issue currency, backed by bonds the banks deposited in the U.S. Treasury. Banks could issue notes worth up to 90 percent of the bonds’ value.
That system was in place from 1863 to 1935. The prescribed period makes the bank-issued notes all the more collectible.
Besides the bank note, nine CASE knives are available in this auction. CASE knives are collectors’ favorites, as evidenced by their popularity during the Treasurer’s Office live auctions at the recently completed State Fair.
CASE knives in their original display cases typically fetch between $110 and $180 in collectors’ circles. Images of the knives and the bank note can be found on the auction site.