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Published January 24, 2013, 08:56 PM

A collection of North Dakota's "old money" is going on the auction block

(WDAY TV) -- Tonight a fascinating look at North Dakota's rich banking history, told through the eyes of an area collector about to put his "old money" on the auction block. At least a million dollars worth.

By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY

(WDAY TV) -- Tonight a fascinating look at North Dakota's rich banking history, told through the eyes of an area collector about to put his "old money" on the auction block. At least a million dollars worth.

And these bills come from banks and small town across North Dakota, some dating back to the days of Dakota Territory. All on sale in Fargo this weekend.

Back in the early 1900's, nearly every main street in all the small North Dakota towns, had a national bank. Many ornate and lavish. But the banks also had their own money, printed by the feds, but still with the local hometown name. Casselton, Abercrombie, Valley City, Fargo.

Glen Jorde/owner of collection: "The fun part is to be a national bank was a big deal because this was free advertising for the banks to have their bank represented on the currency."

Glen Jorde of Devils Lake has been collecting for decades, his collection of rare North Dakota bills is up for auction in Fargo this weekend.

391 lots all North Dakota, representing 124 towns

Unique and never seen before 5 dollar bill from the Capital Bank in Bismarck, Dakota Territory. It could fetch up to 70-thousand dollars. The back story, the Governor also owned the bank.

Jorde: "When he was indicted by a grand jury, the president of the us removed him from office."

Some of the bills up for auction will yield tens of thousands of dollars, richly drawn, pieces of art really. some worth more than the failed bank themselves. This note from the National Bank of Wahpeton Dakota Territory is worth tens of thousands of dollars. When the bank closed it had less than 500 dollars to its name. This bill was found in a book, in a box at a twin cities rummage sale.

Jorde: "You talk about the odds of survival that is cool that one will go for 30-thousand in 1886, with 300 outstanding,."

And how about this. The town of Omemee is no more. A ghost town in Bottineau county. Its 650 people vanished Its 1902 bank closed in 1929, the bills left behind are now worth up to 20-thousand dollars.

Jorde: "In the 20's and 30's a third of the national banks failed. Wheat was in the 20's 3 dollars a bushes in 1932 30 cents a bushel."

A look at North Dakota's past. It successes and failures captured on paper. All with a story. History and the history of finding these things.

The big auction will be held at the Fargo DoubleWood. Public viewing starts tomorrow at noon. The sale is Saturday from Noon to 7. There is also online bidding. More at WDAY.COM and the easy link tab.

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