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A history lesson taught through greenbacks


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    University of Miami alumnus and trustee Edward Dauer and his wife, Joanne, presented a unique view of American history during a recent lecture at UM’s Richter Library, using some of the rarest bills ever engraved to teach historical events that occurred when those notes were printed.

    There was a picture of what a two-dollar bill looked like in 1917, the year John F. Kennedy was born. There was an image of a series of 1896 Silver Certificates, considered some of the most artistic banknotes ever produced. And then, there was a picture of a letter carried on the Pony Express.

    University of Miami alumnus, trustee, and philanthropist Edward Dauer and his wife, Joanne, presented a unique view of American history during a lecture at UM’s Richter Library on October 19, using some of the rarest bills ever engraved to teach historical events that occurred when those notes were printed.

    In his talk “American History As Seen Through Currency,” Dauer displayed several pictures of currency from the personal collection of banknotes he and his wife have amassed over the years. And throughout his talk, he blended images with anecdotes ranging from how money is packaged at the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing to how the decision to print notes in green to deter counterfeiting led to paper currency being nicknamed “greenbacks.”

    After the lecture, Dauer and his wife signed copies of their book, American History As Seen Through Currency, donating the proceeds to UM Libraries.

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