1864-1869 U.S. 3¢ Fractional Note, Light Background


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During the Civil War era, anxious citizens hoarded coins of every denomination, and "hard money" all but disappeared from circulation. It became nearly impossible for merchants to make change. So the U.S. government authorized paper notes with values less than a dollar called Fractional Currency. Six different denominations were issued – and the prized 3¢ note is one of the scarcer ones!

First printed in November 1864, only one design was ever issued for the 3¢ Fractional note. That's because it was printed for just a few months, until it was replaced by the nickel 3¢ piece under the Act of March 3, 1865. These short-lived notes feature a portrait of George Washington on the face and an ornate back design. Out of the millions of dollars worth of Fractional Currency originally issued, over 99% has been redeemed and destroyed. Today, these scarce 3¢ notes are genuine artifacts of a dramatic chapter in America's history.