Ben Franklin wove colorful threads into paper money to attract fraudsters

Grow up / Khachatur Manukyan and colleagues at the University of Notre Dame used optical and imaging equipment to better visualize the ink, paper, and thread that made Benjamin Franklin’s bills unique and difficult to duplicate.

University of Notre Dame

A paper maker in Massachusetts named after him Zenas Marshall Crane he is traditionally credited with being the first to incorporate small threads into the paper used to print money in 1844. But scientists at the University of Notre Dame have found evidence that Benjamin Franklin was incorporating colored threads into his printed money much earlier, among other things . results, according to a new paper published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Us first report of Franklin’s clever investment – perhaps his intention was to confuse the swindlers (although this they argue and one economist)—in 2021, when Notre Dame nuclear physicist Michael Wiescher gave a talk summarizing his team’s findings. The new paper, co-authored by Weischer, describes previous results and evidence for fiber type. Like it has already been said, the Americas first adopted a form of barter with the Native Americans, trading in furs and decorative shell cords called wampum, as well as seeds and imported goods such as nails. But the Boston Mint used Spanish silver between 1653 and 1686 for coinage, adding a little copper or iron to increase their value (a common practice).

The first paper money was found in 1690 when the Massachusetts Bay Colony printed paper money to pay soldiers to fight the French in Canada. The other regions soon followed suit, although there was no uniform formula for the value of each coin. To combat the inevitable counterfeiters, government printers would sometimes cut the bill, which would resemble a government document, to redeem the money. But this method was not good because paper money was destroyed.

By the time he was 23, Franklin was a successful newspaper editor and printer in Philadelphia, publishing The Pennsylvania Gazette and eventually becoming wealthy as the pseudonymous author of Poor Richard’s Almanack. Franklin was a strong supporter of paper money from the beginning. For example, in 1736 he they printed new money in New Jersey, a service he also provided in Pennsylvania and Delaware. And he created the first coins of the Continental Congress in 1775, which shows the 13 states as interconnected rings forming a circle, in which “We are one” is written. (The note read, “Mind your own business,” because Franklin had a little cheek.)

Preparing to analyze Ben Franklin's money.
Grow up / Preparing to analyze Ben Franklin’s money.

University of Notre Dame

“Benjamin Franklin saw that the economic independence of the Colonies was necessary for their political independence,” he said. said co-author Khachatur Manukyan. “Most of the silver and gold coins brought into British America were quickly withdrawn to pay for imported goods, leaving the countries without enough money to expand their economies.”

Naturally, fraudsters didn’t take long to come up with counterfeit money, and Franklin and his network were constantly developing new ways to distinguish counterfeit loans. Some of these methods are still used to identify thieves today. For example, in 1739, Franklin’s printed money for Pennsylvania deliberately confused the name of the state. The purpose was to ensnare fraudsters, who would likely correct the misprints in their propaganda.

Franklin kept a separate book, in addition to his main account book, in which he recorded his dealings with a paper maker named Anthony Newhouse. Franklin purchased “paper money” from Newhouse sometime in the mid-to-late 1740s, and apparently kept the transaction private, according to the authors. “To keep the records credible, Franklin had to stay ahead of the fraudsters,” said Manukyan. But the ledger book in which we know that he wrote these printing details is not mentioned. Through the use of science, we have been able to restore, in part, some of what history would have shown. “

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *