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PREFACE

"OF making many books there is no end," and yet this volume seems to possess features which justify its creation. The general subject of this history has, in its different phases, been treated by many authors; but I believe there is no one work of convenient size and popular character covering the history of the coinage and currency of the United States, with data and details in chronological order, available as a book of reference. The crucial questions relating to coinage and currency which have involved the material and political interests of the country so largely throughout its history, and especially for the past quarter of a century, and the honest difference which many people have experienced in reaching right conclusions, demonstrate the present need of such a work. Most important currency questions remain to be solved, and this volume seeks to furnish a busy public, in convenient form, the experience of the past to aid in such solution.

The aim has been to place before the reader original data, so as to enable him to examine the same and reach his own conclusions. A documentary history pure and simple would be so voluminous as to possess little value save to the student and economist. A narrative history would amount to a treatise embodying largely

the opinions and conclusions of the author. This volume seeks to combine the two, and in the text recites events and gives dates and data with painstaking care, in order to make it convenient and available for purposes of reference, while the Appendix contains the laws of the United States relating to the subject and such documents as are of paramount importance. The chapter on bibliography aims to review the standard literature of the subject and indicate its character, thus enabling any one to pursue, easily and intelligently, any particular branch or feature to as great length as may be desired.

The tables and statistical matter with which this work is replete have been prepared by, or verified by, Maurice L. Muhleman, formerly connected with the Treasury Department at Washington, and for so many years Deputy Assistant Treasurer in the city of New York. Mr. Muhleman is one of the ablest statisticians in the country, and upon all matters relating to finance is an expert and recognized authority. I take pleasure in acknowledging my very great obligation to him in the preparation of this work.

CONTENTS

Economic Problems after Independence. Contest between Local
and National Sovereignty. State Rights Theories complicate
Economic Questions. Influence of Slavery. The Imperative
Need of Nationalization. Its Ultimate Adoption. Effects of
Contest not yet fully eradicated. Sound Currency impossible
without Nationalization. What is Sound Money?

Colonial Systems. The Continental System under the Articles of
Confederation. Reports on Coins and the Establishment of a
Mint. Robert Morris's Plan. Jefferson's Plan. Adoption of
the "Dollar" as the Unit. Mint Act of 1786. The Constitu-
tional Provisions

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II

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Sanford and White Reports.
Southern Gold Mines. The Act of
Resulted in establishing Gold the

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