We could talk money for days, especially when the topic is old, rare, and valuable money. The most interesting banknote denominations to talk about are surely $2 and $5. This is mainly because, in the past, these bills were considered large bills.
This amount of money could feed a family for a week, so the average person did not need to carry around such larger denominations on a daily basis. In most cases, people only used these bills when they wanted to save up some money for the “rainy days”.
Today, we’re investigating the collectible value of the $5 silver certificate bill. We hope our comprehensive research will add to your knowledge of the history of US $5 bills, their collectible value, and where you can find them if you want to form a collection.
History Of The Silver Certificate $5 Bills
The first five-dollar silver certificate bill was issued in 1886, and the last series was issued in 1953 with the Lincoln blue seals. Nowadays, some of these $5 silver certificates are highly sought-after among collectors and can reach pretty high prices.
Collectors are eager to pay a lot of money for silver certificate $5 bills from 1886 and 1896 (also known as Morgan back fives). These bills are considered two of the most beautiful banknotes designed in the US.
Also, the 1899 $5 silver certificate bill is very attractive due to its unique design. This bill features a portrait of an Indian Chief on the front side. The next in line are portholes, the silver certificate ‘45 bills from 1923. These are hard to locate and will cost at least a few hundred of dollars.
However, today’s topic is the silver certificate $5 bill for 1934. This bill is available in 5 different series:
These banknotes can earn you a lot of money if you are lucky enough to come across those with unique serial numbers or star notes. 1934 and 1934B series are a little more valuable than others.
Also, there was a special edition of the 1934A $5 silver certificate bill that was used in North Africa. You will easily recognize them since they are the only one that has a yellow seal instead of the regular blue one which is a trademark of the silver certificate.
List Of Most Valuable 1934 $5 Silver Certificate Bills
Even though many of you don’t want to hear this, the $5 1934 silver certificate bill with a blue seal is very common on the market. No matter the grade you will easily find it wherever you look.
What you need to aim for is to find the real holy grails among the 1934 $5 bills and those are 1934, 1934B, 1934B*, and 1934A North Africa star notes.
These varieties in uncirculated condition, with low serial numbers, unique serial numbers, or with the star symbol can fetch you a lot of money. Keep in mind that these notes always come with blue ink serial numbers, a blue seal, and a large blue 5 overprint on the left-hand side of the bill.
Since this bill is very popular among collectors there are unfortunately a lot of fake bills on the market as well, so make sure you buy only from reliable sources.
Most Valuable 1934 $5 Bills Available On The Market
How To Determine The Value Of 1934 $5 Silver Certificate Bills?
To be able to estimate the value of your banknote you will need to know some basic things for starters. Like with rare coins and stamps there are factors you must take into consideration when trying to put a price tag on your bill.
You will need to pay attention to the following factors:
- Condition – When you want to sell anything you always make sure it looks its best, right? Well, it is the same with the banknotes. Any significant signs of wear and tear will decrease the price.
- Age of printing – Older $5 bills are always more valuable than newer ones. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pay attention to new editions as well.
- Unique serial numbers – Serial numbers play the most significant role in determining the value of your 1934 $5 bill. In case you are not sure if your bill is worth anything, check the serial number. Low serial numbers, those below 2000, bring a premium price. Very high serial numbers (i.e. the last ones to be printed) are also more valuable.
- Errors – Since banknotes are printed in large amounts, errors and misprints are pretty common. Make sure you carefully inspect your bills since errors can enhance the price greatly. Look for overprints, inverted serial numbers, double seals or misplaced seals.
Where Can I Find 1934 $5 Silver Certificate Bills?
If you are searching for this particular bill, I’m glad to tell you that you won’t have a hard time finding it on the Internet. However, if you are in search of extremely valuable and pricey examples, then you’ll need to conduct thorough research.
Regular 1934 $5 bills are available for purchase on platforms such as Amazon, eBay, Etsy, and LiveAuctioneers. For more unique serial numbers, you should check websites like Dorotheum and NumisBids.
Try to look for these bills on Reddit, Facebook, and Instagram as well where a host of information and advice on where you should look next are often available from knowledgeable enthusiasts. Always make sure you find reputable sellers and source of information – be critical whenever you conduct this kind of research.
For those of you who don’t like to risk buying online, you can always visit your local antique shop or specialized shop that sells and trades coins and paper money. Also, make sure you are informed about all upcoming live auctions and shows that will gather collectors from across the country.
If you are an avid numismatic you are for sure a member of some online collecting community that is focused on collecting money or particularly collecting paper money. As usual, I will tell you that you can surf the internet and visit auction sites like eBay, Etsy, and LiveAuctioneers.
Why do these bills carry the silver certificate label?
Back in the day, you were able to trade your paper money for silver or gold. The only banknotes that weren’t possible to redeem were Red Seal legal tender notes for paper money that allowed you to redeem the bills for their equivalent silver value.
During the Great Depression, the owner of the blue silver certificate was able to keep their silver in a stack by investing in blue seal certificates.
What was the Gold Act of 1934?
This act was signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in January 1934. This act allowed the government to transfer ownership of all monetary gold in the US to the US Treasury. Also, it prohibited the Treasury and other financial institutions from redeeming dollars for gold.
This is the main reason why silver certificates were invented so that people can still redeem their paper money for silver dollar coins.
Why did they use 1934A North Africa $5 bills?
These notes were made for purpose of paying the United States armed forces who were stationed in North Africa during WWII. The soldiers at that time were paid in cash and there was a constant risk of German forces taking over the money supply.
So, to prevent any risks, the US invented these unique banknotes. These bills have a yellow seal instead of a blue one. This was a very smart move since in case of Germans takeover so the government could know which banknotes must be discarded.
What is the rarest silver certificate bill?
The rarest and most valuable denomination among the silver certificate bills is $1! The most sought-after and rarest silver certificate $1 bills are the 1928C, 1928D, and 1928E series. The great thing about these notes is that any banknotes from these three series will fetch up to $5,000 as long as they are in reasonably good condition.
Moral Of The Story
So as you can see, the hunt for the 1934 $5 silver certificate bill is among the easiest ones, considering the fact the market is crowded with these banknotes in many different conditions. Nowadays, you can find a high-grade 1934 $5 bill for a fair price.
The main reason why this bill experiences such big oscillation in the price ranges is the fact that a lot of collectors hoarded a large amount of these bills and overcrowded the market with them. When you force something to become popular and valuable all you do is the opposite, you are degrading its price tag.
However, don’t fret there are still very unique and rare 1934 $5 varieties that will bring you a lot of joy and money at the same time, all you have to do is look closely and pay attention. If you are a proud owner of some ultra-rare and unique 1934 $5 bill, please be so kind as to share your story with us.
For all of you, who might hold some piece of valuable information regarding this particular series of the $5 bill, we created the comment section so you an enlighten us. We are eagerly waiting for your comments.