When the incuse design for the $2.50 and $5 gold coins was released in 1908, there was fear that the recesses would harbor dirt and germs. ------------------------- This week's E-Sylum carried two stories about money in the present context of the Covid-19 pandemic. A Bank in Midtown Is Cleaned Out of $100 Bills This March 14, 2020 New York Times article showed the panic setting in as moneyed people stocked up on cash. -Editor As the stock market was having its worst day in 30 years on Thursday, customers at a Bank of America branch in Midtown Manhattan, the financial heart of New York, were lining up to take cash out of their accounts — sometimes tens of thousands of dollars at a time. So many people sought huge sums that the bank branch, at 52nd Street and Park Avenue, temporarily ran out of $100 bills to fulfill large withdrawals, according to three people familiar with the branch's operations. The shortage hit after a rash of requests for as much as $50,000, said two people who witnessed the rush. The problem was limited to large bills — the bank's A.T.M.s stayed stocked and customers with routine transactions were still able to take out cash. By Friday morning, the bank had refilled its supply of big bills, two of the people said. But the desire for cash persisted: A teller at a JPMorgan Chase branch across the street said on Friday that there had been a "nonstop" stream of customers stockpiling cash over the past two days. To read the complete article, see: A Bank in Midtown Is Cleaned Out of $100 Bills (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/14/business/coronavirus-cash-shortage-bank.html) Paper Money Shunned For Fear of Virus San Francisco Cashless Stores In a world suffering a pandemic, cash is no longer king. A growing number of businesses and individuals worldwide have stopped using banknotes in fear that physical currency, handled by tens of thousands of people over their useful life, could be a vector for the spreading coronavirus. Public officials and health experts have said that the risk of transferring the virus person-to-person through the use of banknotes is small. But that has not stopped businesses from refusing to accept currency and some countries from urging their citizens to stop using banknotes altogether. To read the complete article, see: Filthy lucre: Paper money shunned for fear of virus spread (https://apnews.com/167186097f44116220b757abebb49be3) ------------------------------ The E-Sylum is the weekly news list from the Numismatic Bibliomania Society. Their quarterly journal is The Asylum. Only a few hundred people pay their dues to belong to NBS and receive the journal, but 6,085 people get the E-Sylum, which is sent out free. You can read the archives at the NBS site here https://www.coinbooks.org/club_nbs_esylum_archive.html and decide for yourself if you want it in your In Box.