The United States government began issuing one dollar silver certificates in 1878 as a way to bring smaller denomination paper money into circulation. One dollar silver certificates continued to be issued until the early 1930s, when production was halted because of the Great Depression and widespread hoarding of these small bills as a store of value. After the outbreak of World War II, the need for small denomination currency once again became evident and production was resumed. The new version of one dollar silver certificates featured additional security measures, including ultraviolet detection marks and a blue serial number that fluoresced under ultraviolet light (see images above). Today, these special 1935 $1 silver certificates are highly collectible because they’re only known to have been printed with this unique security feature.
What is a UV marker?
A UV marker is a special ink used to mark paper currency that can only be seen under a black light. UV markings were used by the U.S. Treasury Department beginning in 1935 to help detect counterfeit bills. Unmarked bills have higher value because they are believed to be less likely to be fake. UV markers were used to mark both one dollar silver certificates and hundred dollar bills. However, while one hundred dollar bills are still widely used and can be found with UV markings, 1935 $1 silver certificates are very rare, so it’s unlikely that you’ll ever come across one that has the special UV markings.
Blue serial numbers
One dollar silver certificates printed between 1935 and 1945 feature blue serial numbers that fluoresce under a black light. The use of fluorescence was a new technology used to help detect and prevent counterfeiting of paper money. Although the UV marker is much more rare, it’s the blue serial number that generally adds value to a 1935 $1 silver certificate, as it was only used for this one year. The fact that 1935 $1 silver certificates were printed with two special security features makes them highly collectible. In addition to being a rare form of currency, these bills are also a fascinating piece of American history.
Collecting rarity and value
The most valuable rare bills are those printed with unique security features such as UV markers or blue serial numbers. You may come across the occasional 1935 $1 silver certificate with a UV marker but it’ll likely be unmarked. So, while UV marked bills are rare, unmarked bills are even more so and will have a higher value. The rarest 1935 $1 silver certificates are those with the blue serial number printed on both sides of the bill. Only about 21,000 of these bills were printed and they are probably the rarest one dollar bill ever printed. Even if you don’t come across a rare bill, collecting 1935 $1 silver certificates is a great way to take advantage of the rising popularity of rare currency.
Benefits of investing in rare currency
While rare currency can be a fun and interesting collectible, it’s also an excellent way to diversify your investment portfolio. Collectible rare currency offers the same potential as stocks, bonds, and other investment types: It can be a stable, long-term investment with potential for growth. Investing in rare currency can also be an effective way to hedge against inflation, as the prices of rare bills tend to rise as the overall value of the dollar falls. Rare currency can be a great gift for someone who’s new to investing or who might not have a great deal of knowledge about the stock market. It’s also a great way to pass down wealth to the next generation: rare currency can be a low-risk investment that can be handed down as a family heirloom.
Where to buy rare currency
If you’re interested in buying rare bills, you can start by doing a basic internet search to see what’s currently available. It’s a good idea to network with other collectors who might be willing to trade or sell rare bills. You can also check with coin and currency shows in your area to see what’s available. If you’re interested in purchasing valuable bills, make sure you do your research and shop around for the best prices. You can also try looking for older bills; although they won’t be as valuable as 1935 $1 silver certificates, they’ll likely be cheaper. You can also check with your bank to see if they have any old bills that they are willing to sell you.
One dollar silver certificates were first printed in 1878. During the Great Depression, production was halted. Production resumed in 1935 with two special security features: ultraviolet detection marks and a blue serial number. Only about 21,000 bills were printed with a blue serial number on both sides. These bills are very rare and valuable. If you’re interested in collecting rare currency, look for bills printed between 1935 and 1945. UV marked bills are very collectible because they’re rare and can be used to detect counterfeits. Blue serial numbers on both sides are even rarer and can add significant value to a bill.