PCGS Currency Holders Take the Heat
By PCGS Currency
only a dozen exceptions, all the paper items in
a Florida collector’s home safe were destroyed
or damaged by intense heat during a house fire.
The only papers that survived unscathed were 12
bank notes inside PCGS Currency holders,
including two 1907 $10 Gold Certificates.
"There were eleven large size and one small size
PCGS Currency-certified notes recovered from the
fire earlier this year. The holders were sooty
and some had blisters and discoloration on their
surface, but the notes inside all survived
without damage," said Laura A. Kessler, Vice
President of PCGS Currency, a division of
Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT).
All other paper items in the five-foot tall gun
safe at the anonymous collector’s central
Florida home were destroyed or damaged from the
extreme heat, including family documents,
photographs and bank notes not housed in PCGS
Currency holders. Hundreds of encapsulated coins
survived the fire, although their holders
partially melted and were deformed.
"The house had a metal roof and was built on
stilts that collapsed during the fire. The safe
had a one-hour rating, but it took about four
hours until the fire was put out. The Fire
Department said the metal roof made it like an
oven (under the collapsed building)," the
"When he submitted the notes he asked us to
re-holder them, but at first glance I thought
there’d be a change in grades because of the
apparent damage to the outside of the holders. I
didn’t know what we’d find when we carefully
removed the notes from the holders, but they all
survived with no damage. It was fantastic," said
"The top-grade materials that are used for our
holders undoubtedly saved the notes. They’re
made from DuPont Mylar-D®, the safest and best
archival material for long-term storage of bank
notes. This material is the same used by the
Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. for storage of
important historical documents. It has a higher
melting temperature, and thus is safer than
other currency holders in the marketplace."
The 11 surviving large-size notes now in new
PCGS Currency holders are:
1896 $1 Silver Certificate (Fr. 225), graded
1907 $5 Legal Tender (Fr. 19), Very Fine 30.
1917 $1 Legal Tender (Fr. 37), Very Fine 20.
1917 $1 Legal Tender (Fr. 39), Very Fine 30 PPQ.
1899 "Black Eagle" $1 Silver Certificate (Fr.
226A), Extremely Fine 40 PPQ.
1899 $1 Silver Certificate (Fr. 236), Very Fine
35 and a second example graded Very Fine 30.
1899 $5 Silver Certificate (Fr. 277), Very Good
1918 $1 Federal Reserve (Fr. 713), Very Fine 25.
1907 $10 Gold Certificate (Fr. 1171), Very Fine
20, and a second note graded Very Fine 35 PPQ.
A twelfth PCGS-certified note also survived the
fire without damage, a Series 2003 $1 star note
(Fr. 1929-F), graded Gem New 65 PPQ, that the
collector obtained free when he joined the PCGS
Currency Collectors Club.
For additional information about PCGS Currency,
call (949) 567-1157 or visit online at