The first Silver Certificates were printed in 1878 in response to Western silver-mining interests, who were unhappy about the U.S. gold standard. They wanted silver coins, but they got the next best thing—bills redeemable in silver stored in government vaults.

The late 19th-century Silver Certificates are some of the most beautiful bank notes ever produced by the U.S. government. The so-called educational notes are particularly handsome. They include a $1 bill from 1896 with "History Instructing Youth" on the front and portraits of Martha and George Washington on the back, as well as a $2 bill from the same year with "Science Presenting Steam and Electricity to Science and Industry" on the front and portraits of inventors Robert Fulton and Samuel Morse on the back.

In 1899 the popular "Chief Onepapa" $5 was produced followed by a hiatus until 1923, when a $5 Lincoln was issued. In 1928, Silver Certificates shrunk in size a bit like all U.S. currency, and Silver Certificates were printed until 1935. In the 1940s and 1950s, most bills were taken out of circulation and shredded. The bill was briefly revived in 1957, but by 1964 the redemption of Silver Certificates for actual silver had ended.

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Recent News: US Silver Certificates

Source: Google News

Exeter maths star Jonty off to Cambridge
Exeter Express and Echo, September 1st

He scored top results in the challenging British Physics Olympiad and as a Gold award recipient is in the top 150 in the country. He was also awarded a Silver certificate in the Chemistry Olympiad 2014, organised by the Royal Society of Chemistry...Read more

Fort Leavenworth to break ground on new $15M facility
Leavenworth Times, August 27th

The building's design achieved a silver certificate from the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design program that recognizes energy-efficient buildings. The design includes solar panels and other measures to conserve resources. The Regional ...Read more

George Washington Portrait Unfinished: Story Behind Dollar Bill Image, August 27th

“The current design of the United State one dollar bill ($1) technically dates to 1963 when the bill became a Federal Reserve Note as opposed to a Silver Certificate,” says “However, many of the design elements that we associate with...Read more

1882 $100 Gold Certificate leading lot, August 22nd

A “unique in private hands” 1882 $100 Gold Certificate was the star of Stack's Bowers Aug. 7 sale at the American Numismatic Association World's Fair of Money in Rosemont, Ill. The rarity, Fr. 1203, which features Bruce-Wyman signatures and a small...Read more

Editorial: LBCC choirs hit the right notes on world stage
Corvallis Gazette Times, August 5th

And that wasn't the only hardware the LBCC singers won in Latvia: The 35-member concert choir finished fourth in the contemporary music category, earning a silver certificate. Making the victory sweeter was the fact that the LBCC contingent was the...Read more

More women on US currency? President has that power
Shreveport Times, August 4th

dollar coin beginning in 1999; and Helen Keller, a pioneer for disabled rights, on the reverse of the 2003 Alabama quarter. There has been only one woman on U.S. paper currency: First lady Martha Washington appeared on the $1 silver certificate in...Read more

More women on U.S. currency?, August 4th

a pioneer for disabled rights, on the reverse of the 2003 Alabama quarter. There has been only one woman on U.S. paper currency: First lady Martha Washington appeared on the $1 silver certificate in 1886, 1891 and 1896. Follow @gregorykorte on...Read more

Featuring More Women On U.S. Currency
WFMY News 2, August 4th

on the reverse of the 2003 Alabama quarter. There has been only one woman on U.S. paper currency: First lady Martha Washington appeared on the $1 silver certificate in 1886, 1891 and 1896. 220 CONNECT 5 TWEETLINKEDINCOMMENTEMAILMORE...Read more