Beautiful specimen certificate from the city of New York
printed in 1974. This historic document was printed by the American Bank Note Company and has an ornate border around it with a vignette of a Native American. This item has the printed signatures of the Mayor, Abraham Beame and Comptroller and is over 39 years old. Full set of nine coupons attached on bottom.
Abraham David "Abe" Beame (March 20, 1906 – February 10, 2001) was mayor of New York City from 1974 to 1977. As such, he presided over the city during the fiscal crisis of the mid-1970s, during which the city was almost forced to declare bankruptcy. When he left office in 1977, the city budget had changed from a $1.5 billion deficit to a surplus of $200 million. He was succeeded by Edward I. Koch as Mayor.
About Specimen Certificates
Specimen Certificates are actual certificates that have never been issued. They were usually kept by the printers in their permanent archives as their only example of a particular certificate. Sometimes you will see a hand stamp on the certificate that says "Do not remove from file".
Specimens were also used to show prospective clients different types of certificate designs that were available. Specimen certificates are usually much scarcer than issued certificates. In fact, many times they are the only way to get a certificate for a particular company because the issued certificates were redeemed and destroyed. In a few instances, Specimen certificates were made for a company but were never used because a different design was chosen by the company.
These certificates are normally stamped "Specimen" or they have small holes spelling the word specimen. Most of the time they don't have a serial number, or they have a serial number of 00000. This is an exciting sector of the hobby that has grown in popularity over the past several years.