Craven County Digital History Exhibit

NC c1748 6 Shillings

Accession Number TP.2000.017.001



North Carolina paper currency, value six shillings



[James Davis]



Ink on paper



North Carolina, New Bern,



After 1748-04-04



OH: 2 3/8” (6 cm); OW:  4 ¾” (12.1 cm)



Engraved six-shilling note issued for North Carolina. Printed from engraved copper plate with scrolled leaf border on left edge and fleur-de-lis in a circle on lower left corner. Printed inscription (in script): “North Carolina/ VI S Six Shillings/ Proclamation Mony [sic] according to Act of/ Assembly pass’d the 4th of April 1748.” Bill is numbered in ink in upper right corner: “835.” Signed in ink on obverse: “Saml Swann.” Signatures of other signers—Eleazer Allen, Edward Moseley, and John Starkey—are no longer legible. On reverse are the inscriptions: “E. Wrenford” and “Thomas Alman E.” The note is printed on very thin paper and mounted on stronger stock. It was folded in quarters.






This bill is part of a 54-piece of North Carolina paper currency issued between 1748 and 1771, a gift from the same anonymous donor



Although the engraving is unsigned, the printer of the 1748-issue bills is probably James Davis (1721-1785), North Carolina’s first printer. Davis arrived from Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1749 to fill the post of public printer, an office created that year by the Assembly to print a revisal of the colony’s laws. He set up his printing shop in New Bern. His first job was printing currency for the province. The revised laws of the colony were not printed until 1751.

The bill was issued in a series of 2,000.






Permission to use the photograph must be obtained in writing from Tryon Palace Historic Sites & Gardens, New Bern, North Carolina. It must be accompanied by the caption: “From the collection of Tryon Palace Historic Sites & Gardens, New Bern, North Carolina; North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, Division of Archives and History.”


Obverse Image:
Reverse Image:

Images scanned by Dean Knight
Text prepared by Nancy Richards and Victor T. Jones, Jr.

Last edited: November 20, 2014

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