August 7, 2011

Disposing of Old Government Bonds, 1911

From The Times Dispatch of Richmond, VA, July 20, 1911:

The Times Dispatch, Richmond, VA, July 20, 1911

More Than $2,000,000,000 of Civil War Issue Fed to Furnaces.

Washington, July 19.--More than $2,000,000,000 in redeemed bonds, representing the major part of the government's Civil War debt, is being fed gradually to the furnace in the Bureau of Printing and Engraving.  The engineers estimate that the immense sum in old securities will generate about as much steam as two tons of good coal. 

All the government securities issued and redeem between 1860 and 1898 are being thus destroyed, including nearly $1,000,000,000 in the famous 7-30 bonds, which are made in the size of greenbacks, and passed as money at the highest rate of interest the government has ever paid.  More than 1,500,000 separate bond coupons, which represent a large portion of the government's interest payments for fifty years, also will be burned.

The usual process of reducing old securities to a pulp by macerating them was at first attempted, but the job proved too great.

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