David Smith, Frost Bank, who apparently needs (or prefers) no introduction, enlightened us this morning with some fascinating facts on the dollar bill. And if you attended this morning, you were also one dollar richer!
Did you know….
- The lowly one-dollar bill traces back to 1862 as Lincoln needed to have a more manageable currency system to finance his was of aggression against the south.
- That first dollar bill had a portrait of Salmon Chase on it.
- Over the next 101 years, the dollar bill has had several images and faces on it, but by 1963, it settled on the look you see today.
- All the other US bills except the $1 dollar bill and the $2 dollar bill have seen major design. changes in the last 50 years. That is because counterfeiters don’t care about copying those bills because there is not enough profit in doing so.
- The dollar bill is printed by the Bureau of Printing and Engraving, which is part of the US Treasury. They are printed in plants in Washington DC and Ft. Worth.
- Each dollar measures 6.14 inches x 2.61 inches, this has to do with the max case production and handling.
- It is 4/1000” thick and there are 490-dollar bills to the pound.
- It consists of 75% cotton and 25% linen. There is no paper in a dollar bill.
- Tests show you can fold a dollar bill 4,000 times before it will tear. Try that at home!
- 48% of all bills printed are one-dollar bills.
- There are 18.2 million ones printed each day…and about that same number reclaimed or destroyed.
- Each one-dollar bill lasts approximately 5.8 years.
- It costs the government approximately 5.4 cents to produce a one-dollar bill.
- If a bill is partially torn or torn in half, it is spendable, as long as you have both serial numbers.
- In circulation, there are
11.7 billion one-dollar bills
2.8 billion five-dollar bills
1.9 billion ten-dollar bills
8.9 billion twenty-dollar bills
1.7 billion fifty-dollar bills
11.5 billion hundred-dollar bills
That is a total of 38.5 billion bills in circulation!
- 95% of dollar bills have enough bacteria on them to make you sick.
- 90% of dollar bills have traces of cocaine.
Now, let’s talk a little bit about the actual dollar bill images. The front of the dollar bill is straight forward and easily understood. But there is one interesting feature in the upper right-hand corner, above the border of the number one – you will see a small bird or spider. That is considered an anti-counterfeiting measure.
The back of the dollar bill is a little more exciting. On the left is the pyramid, which represents strength and endurance. The pyramid is unfinished symbolizing our continuing growth and effort toward perfection. The eye inside the triangle represents the eternal of god, which places the spiritual above the material. Annuit Coeptis means “he has favored our undertakings” in Latin. The base of the pyramid has roman numerals which translate to 1776, the year of our independence. The phrase below the pyramid is novus ordo seclorum which means “a new order of the ages” in Latin. On the right, is the great seal of the United States, which has 5 symbols using 13 parts, one for each of the original states.
- The burst of light above the eagle’s head has 13 stars
- The eagle’s right claw has an olive branch with 13 leaves and represents peace
- The eagle’s left claw has 13 arrows representing war
- The shield has 13 stripes symbolizing a united nation
- The ribbon in the eagle’s mouth has the phrase E pluribus unum which has 13 letters and means “out of many, one.”
The eagle, as a whole, represents both war and peace. His head is pointed towards the olive branch symbolizing a desire for peace.
So that is the story of your friend, the one-dollar bill.
Frost Bank has a few of them to lend or we can take care of the ones you’d like to save! Contact David Smith or click here to check out what else Frost Bank has to offer!