Old Money from The First National Bank Of Portland | 221

The First National Bank Of Portland

The First National Bank Of Portland in Maine printed $11,943,980 dollars worth of national currency. Once a bank issues that much money there really isn’t much room for rare issues. However, there are certainly exceptions to every rule. This national bank opened in 1864 and stopped printing money in 1933, which equals a 70 year printing period. That is considering a long operation period for a national bank. During its life, The First National Bank Of Portland issued 27 different types and denominations of national currency. We have examples of the types listed below. Your bank note should look similar. Just the bank name will be different. For the record, The First National Bank Of Portland was located in Cumberland County. It was assigned charter number 221.

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The First National Bank Of Portland in Maine issued 8,046 sheets of $1 original series national bank notes. Just because a print range is between 5,000 and 10,000 doesn’t mean that individual notes will be easy to buy. That number isn’t really high or low. Some notes are extremely rare and some could be from a hoard. Values are determined based on condition and the number of known survivors. One of the most interesting things about early first charter one dollar national bank notes is all of the different slight variations you can find. Some notes have a red charter number, others do not. Some have red serial numbers and some have blue serial numbers. Some are printed on white paper and others are printed on paper with a slight blue tint. You can really find lots of different ways to collect these. Generally speaking, prices for “first charter aces” are down from their highs. So there are some bargains in this arena of collecting.
Original Series $1 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland printed 8,046 sheets of $2 original series national bank notes. It is important to know production numbers for original series two dollar bills for informational purposes. All $2 bills printed before 1875 are very rare and highly desirable. Most survivors represent the only known example for that bank. Collectors call these $2 bills lazy deuces. The large two on the face of the bill is pictured horizontally, thus making it look lazy. Don’t be fooled by the silly name though. These can be worth significant amounts of money on many occasions.
Original Series $2 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 11,350 sheets of $5 original series national bank notes. These notes were only printed until 1875. For a national bank to print more than 10,000 means that they were doing a lot of business. Your exact note is likely still rare. The value will be more condition based than rarity based though. Each five dollar original series bank note has a spiked red seal. That is pretty much the only design difference between it and later issues. These are really beautiful notes. One neat thing about these is that the back of each note has a vignette of the corresponding state seal. Some of the state seals are very imaginative. Collecting by state seal was very popular early on in the hobby. Today most collectors are more concerned about bank of issue and condition. Serial number one bank notes are also extremely popular.
Original Series $5 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 10,575 sheets of $10 original series national bank notes. These notes were only printed until 1875. For a national bank to print more than 10,000 means that they were doing a lot of business. Your exact note is likely still rare. The value will be more condition based than rarity based though. These notes were issued during the glory days of the national bank note era. Each $10 bill was pen signed by the president and cashier of the bank. Small towns and large cities both issued these notes. Of course the small town issuers tend to be scarcer today. Prices range from $500 to thousands of dollars (and more if the condition and rarity warrant it). Contact us if you need help valuing your bank note.
Original Series $10 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 1,909 sheets of $20 original series national bank notes. That issue number may or may not sound like a lot of sheets depending on your experience with collectible currency. However, all original series $20 bills are rare. The production amount is irrelevant when it comes to values. These seem like common issues until you want to buy one. These just aren’t readily available from rare banks in very fine or better condition. We definitely feel like these are undervalued in today’s market.
Original Series $20 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 3,500 sheets of $50 original series national bank notes. The printing number for original series $50 bills is irrelevant. There are only about 35 known to exist from all banks in the country. Despite being extremely rare, condition is still very important. Lots of first charter fifty dollar bills are heavily circulated; there are significant premiums for anything that grades extremely fine or higher.
Original Series $50 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 3,500 sheets of $100 original series national bank notes. The same piece of advice applies here as it does to first charter fifties. These are rare enough to the point that printing numbers don’t matter. The same condition guidelines apply to original series $100 bank notes. These traded hands frequently and are often found in “well-used” states today. As with other bank notes, there can be huge price gaps between different grade points.
Original Series $100 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 6,255 sheets of $5 series of 1875 national bank notes. A print range between 5,000 and 10,000 is a pretty high number. But you have to remember we are talking about bank notes from the 1870s and 1880s. Even banks with high issue numbers could be rare today. Series of 1875 $5 bills are some of the most commonly encountered bank notes from the first charter series. Only the original series $1 bill is more available. Some banks exclusively issued five dollar bills. So if you want an example from one of those banks then you don’t have many options. These notes have a rounded red seal and red serial numbers. They also all have a red charter number.
Series of 1875 $5 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 6,245 sheets of $10 series of 1875 national bank notes. A print range between 5,000 and 10,000 is a pretty high number. But you have to remember we are talking about bank notes from the 1870s and 1880s. Even banks with high issue numbers could be rare today. The two vignettes seen on 1875 $10 bank notes are “Franklin and Electricity” and “America Seizing Lightning”. These notes occasionally confuse novices because the year 1752 is printed on them. That is when Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity. It has nothing to do with when these bank notes were issued. The back of each $10 bill has “DeSoto Discovering the Mississippi.”
Series of 1875 $10 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,069 sheets of $20 series of 1875 national bank notes. The exact number of series of 1875 $20 national bank notes printed by this bank is good to know. Don’t expect a high number to lower the value or a small number to increase the value. These notes are scarce enough on their own that the stats don’t really matter. Twenty dollars was a lot of money between 1875 and 1901, which is the time period in which these were printed. These just weren’t saved in high numbers.
Series of 1875 $20 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,069 sheets of $50 series of 1875 national bank notes. The printing number for original series $50 bills is irrelevant. There are only about 35 known to exist from all banks in the country. To make matters worse, these are not being discovered much at all these days. The supply is pretty constant, as is the demand. Prices start at about $10,000 and can go up sharply from there.
Series of 1875 $50 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,069 sheets of $100 series of 1875 national bank notes. There are currently only about 70 series of 1875 $100 national bank notes known to exist. So the sheet output is really only included for factual purposes – it won’t affect values. The actual value is based on condition and bank of issue. If you don’t know how to grade currency, then send us pictures of what you have. We can help you grade and value any national bank note. Of course series of 1875 $100 bank notes would be a treat to see.
Series of 1875 $100 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 11,476 sheets of $5 1882 brown back national bank notes. When we start talking about a printing number in the five figure range, then you are likely not dealing with a great rarity. However, the note could certainly still be popular and valuable. You can take the total number of sheets printed and multiply that number by four to get the exact number of 1882 $5 brown back bank notes this bank issued. Each note has a portrait of James Garfield on the left hand side of the bill. These are very popular with collectors because they have different text layouts. Some notes are worth as little as a few hundred dollars, but most are worth a good deal more.
Series of 1882 $5 Brown Back

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 8,574 sheets of $10 1882 brown back national bank notes. A print range between 5,000 and 10,000 suggests that there should be at least a couple of notes known to exist. There were three $10 bills printed on a single sheet of 1882 brown backs. The design of the bill is similar to all earlier ten dollar national bank notes. The nickname comes from the fact that these bills have a brown seal and brown overprint. Despite saying series of 1882, these were actually printed by some banks up until 1908. The date you see in cursive relates to when the bank first started issuing brown back notes.
Series of 1882 $10 Brown Back

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 8,574 sheets of $20 1882 brown back national bank notes. As you can see, the sheet output is the same for $20 brown backs as it is for $10 brown backs. There was only one $20 brown back printed on a sheet. So the sheet output also equals the total note output. One neat thing about all brown backs is that they each have a different back design based on which state issued them. The back left hand side of the note shows the state seal of which ever state the national bank was located in. Generally speaking, 1882 $20 brown backs are pretty difficult to locate. They typically were printed in small numbers and they don’t have a great survival rate.
Series of 1882 $20 Brown Back

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 1,963 sheets of $50 1882 brown back national bank notes. Not many banks printed $50 1882 brown backs. Sheet outputs aren’t extremely important. However, it is good factual information to know. The most common 1882 $50 brown backs are worth about $5,000. However, some can be worth more than $10,000 based on condition, serial number, and bank of issue.
Series of 1882 $50 Brown Back

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 1,963 sheets of $100 1882 brown back national bank notes. Just because this bank printed more than 1,000 one hundred dollar brown backs does not mean that they are all common. We are very interested in purchasing $100 1882 brown back national bank notes. We have paid more than $15,000 for some examples. Send us pictures of what you have and we will respond quickly with an appraisal and offer.
Series of 1882 $100 Brown Back

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,900 sheets of $5 1902 red seal national bank notes. That may sound like a high number. However, red seals did not survive in large numbers. It is likely still quite rare. Five dollar red seals are typically a little bit rarer than some higher denominations. That rarity is typically just a result of small issuances. Most national banks preferred to issue $10 and $20 1902 red seals. Each one of these five dollar bank notes has a portrait of Ben Harrison on the left hand side of the bill. Most people are quick to notice the cursive charter date with a year between 1902 and 1908 written on it. That date will never affect the value.
1902 $5 Red Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,100 sheets of $10 1902 red seal national bank notes. A print range between 1,000 and 2,500 is pretty standard for red seals. Despite being standard, in the scheme of things that is still an extremely small quantity printed. Collectors love ten dollar 1902 red seals. They usually represent the rarest bank notes printed by any national bank. Don’t let the term “series of 1902″ confuse you. These were actually printed for about six years between 1902 and 1908. That is obviously a very short issue period which means that many red seals are quite rare. Each note has a portrait of William McKinley. Be sure to check the number under McKinley. If it is #1 then you are dealing with a note from the first sheet of bank notes issued. Number one bank notes are worth even more money than the already rare red seals.
1902 $10 Red Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 2,100 sheets of $20 1902 red seal national bank notes. Twenty dollar red seal bank notes have poor survival rates. They don’t command premiums compared to the ten dollar denomination, but they are definitely rarer. All 1902 red seals were printed on four note sheets. There were three ten dollar bills and one twenty dollar bill per sheet. The 1902 $20 notes have a portrait of Hugh McCulloch on them. The charter number and seal are both printed in red ink. The serial numbers have a slight blue tint to them. The charter number is printed around the border of the note several times. The bank’s title is right in the middle of the note and the state of issue is printed just below the title. Remember that all national bank notes are valued based on their condition and rarity. The same rule applies to 1902 $20 red seals.
1902 $20 Red Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 218,308 sheets of $5 1902 blue seal national bank notes. Sadly, a printing range that high means that these blue seal bank notes from this bank are not going to be extremely rare. Ben Harrison is on the front of all 1902 $5 blue seal bank notes. This happens to be the smallest denomination issued for the 1902 series. Each note is complete with a blue seal and blue charter number. Despite saying series of 1902, these were actually issued by national banks between 1908 and 1928. There are two different types of blue seals. The first type is called a date back and it has “1902-1908″ written on the back of the bill. The other type is called a plain back; it does not have the date stamps on the back of the bill. The values for these notes range widely based on condition and the bank of issue.
1902 $5 Blue Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 45,800 sheets of $10 1902 blue seal national bank notes. Once a bank prints more than 10,000 sheets of blue seals it becomes very difficult for those notes to be rare. 1902 $10 blue seal bank notes all have a portrait of William McKinley on them. Values can range from as little as $40 up to over $10,000. There really is no trick to know what is rare and what is common by just doing an internet search. You really need to work with an expert (like us) in order to determine the value of your specific bank note. There are at least ten different factors than can make some 1902 $10 blue seals worth more than others. We know exactly what to look for and we would be happy to provide a free appraisal and our best offer.
1902 $10 Blue Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 45,800 sheets of $20 1902 blue seal national bank notes. The same rarity rules for 1902 $10 blue seals also apply to $20 blue seals. Just remember that $20 bills are by nature three times rarer (unfortunately they don’t command a premium over other denominations). Hugh McCulloch is pictured on the front of each bill. Contact us if you need pricing help.
1902 $20 Blue Seal National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 52,998 sheets of Type1 1929 $5 national bank notes. Once you start talking about sheet printing numbers over 50,000 then there is no chance that issue will be rare. However, there could still be lots of collector value based on popularity and condition. Every 1929 $5 bill has a portrait of Abraham Lincoln on it. This is also the lowest denomination of small size national currency that any bank issued. All serial numbers end with the letter A and start with a letter between A and F. Remember that you can take the total number of sheets printed and multiply it by six get to the actual number of bank notes printed for this denomination. All small size national bank notes were printed on sheets of six.
Series of 1929 Type1 $5 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 6,898 sheets of Type1 1929 $10 national bank notes. Sadly, based on a number that high, there is basically no chance for these notes to be especially rare. Each $10 bill from 1929 has a portrait of Alexander Hamilton on it. The black number written vertically is the charter number. The charter number never affects the value; it is just an identifier. The ten dollar type1 national bank note happens to be the single most common national bank note, with over 65,000 known to exist from all banks. Of course each note is valued based on its condition and rarity. Some are very rare.
Series of 1929 Type1 $10 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 15,206 individual notes from the type2 1929 $5 national bank note series. This is a pretty typical print run for type2 national bank notes. Values will be across the board based on demand. This was an easy and popular denomination for national banks. Five dollars could buy a lot of different things back in 1929 and the early 1930s. 1929 type2 five dollar bank notes are available in quantities today. However, some notes can be extremely rare. The exact value all depends on the bank of issue and condition. Contact us and we would be happy to give a free appraisal.
Series of 1929 Type2 $5 National Bank Note

The First National Bank Of Portland also printed 3,270 individual notes from the type2 1929 $10 national bank note series. That may seem like a high number, but remember that is total notes printed for the denomination, not sheets printed. The easiest way to spot the difference between type1 1929 $10 bills and 1929 type2 $10 bills is in the serial number. Type2 notes have a serial number that ends with a number. 1929 type1 notes have a serial number that ends with the letter A. Generally speaking, these $10 bills are rarer than the earlier type1 issues. However, most collectors don’t pay more for that rarity because they look basically the same.
Series of 1929 Type2 $10 National Bank Note

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