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UNC Libraries

Historic Moneys

Introduction to the Numismatic Collection at the University Libraries

The study of money and money-related material is called numismatics.  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries has accumulated coins, paper money, tokens, and other numismatic items issued by governments, private banks, and merchants. Today, the North Carolina Collection (NCC) in the Wilson Special Collections Library cares for the Library’s numismatic holdings, which total about 10,000 pieces. Among some of the other moneys preserved in the NCC Gallery are Greek and Roman coins, American colonial and Revolutionary-era bills, Bechtler coins from North Carolina’s gold rush, treasury notes from the Civil War, United States coinage, railroad stocks and Confederate bonds, commercial and military scrip, modern city parking tokens, novelty notes, and items from South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. While the collection is highly diverse in its geographical representation, its largest subcategories relate to paper money produced for circulation in North Carolina during the 1700s and 1800s.

For more information about North Carolina’s numismatic past, refer to the A Brief History of North Carolina Money. Also see The History of the University Library's Numismatic Collection to learn more about the establishment and subsequent development of this public reference collection.

Created by Bob Schreiner and Linda Jacobson, North Carolina Collection at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Libraries
Last updated: 07/09/2020