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snopes
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Comment: A new rumor... Any idea where it came from??

What is on the Back of the Two Dollar Bill?

The back of the $2 bill has an engraving of the signing of the Declaration
of Independence. In the image is a man who has dark skin and wearing a
powdered wig while sitting at the table just to the left of the men
standing in the center of the engraving. This dark skinned man is John
Hanson in his position as president of the continental congress.

In the original painting hanging in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda, the dark
skinned man does not appear!!!

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unhappy_buffalo
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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I did some searching, and found a nice photo of the capitol building rotunda and it appears that in the painting, the man is white, not dark skinned as depicted on the back of the $2 bill. Maybe it was some sort of shading error or something.
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tribrats
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I have 3 1976 $2.00 bills. I just asked Hubby if he saw any black men in the pic and he pointed to the man in question and said that he was indeed darker but wasn't convinced he was supposed to be black. Hubby didn't see the original that unhappy_buffalo posted but he went right to that man. Not very scientific but hopefully helpful.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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On my 1995 series, he looks darker, too, but only around his chin and lip, as if he has a 5 o'clock shadow thing going on.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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tribrats
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Wish my scanner was working. Maybe I will try to fix it tomorrow. Mine's cheeks are darker than the rest but the rest of the face is similar. And looks like he has white hair. Most of the eyes look like black hollows kinda freaky.

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Lady Moon
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Intaglio printing tends to do that. My husband tried to copy a drawing in intaglio and it ended up darkening everything.

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DWGuy
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I'm not real sure what the debate is. Here is a wiki page with the image in question:

$2 Reverse

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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Is there a debate?

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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NocturnalGoddess- naughty or nice?
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I have tons of $2 bills (I used to love paying with them in highschool... it confused the heck out of the lunchladies) and while he is darker, he doesn't appear dark enough that you could mistake him for being black.

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hudders
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by tribrats:
Wish my scanner was working.

You probably wouldn't get any joy anyway.

Many scanners have built-in detection systems to recognise banknotes and stop you scanning them. I tried scanning a £5 British note not so long ago and it refused, telling me I was being very naughty.

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RangerDog
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That claim I will have to test for myself, hudders, because I just don't believe it.

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Squoval
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Hijack: unhappy_bufallo, it's polite to link to a picture that large, than show it directly here.  -

Rangerdog, it's possible.

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Richard W
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The man in question seems to have slightly darker skin than the people surrounding him even in the oil painting, to me. If I'm getting the correct person, he's the one sitting on the end of the row on the left, facing right. (Not the guy at the table on the far left, facing towards us.)

The one sitting in front of Gordon Brown.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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I love the internet! Lookit what I found: rules about the reproduction and photography of various nations' bank notes!

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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RangerDog
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Bill D, I am still going to try it when I get home today!

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RangerDog
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Bill D, I am still going to try it when I get home today!

--------------------
Give a man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day; give him a religion, and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish

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RangerDog
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Bill D, I am still going to try it when I get home today!

--------------------
Give a man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day; give him a religion, and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish

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Greywarden
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Having checked a Series 1976 $2, a Series 1995 $2, and a handful of Series 2003 $2s, I certainly see the individual in question... he's in the painting as well. I think it a matter of the way the color painting was "converted" to "greenscale" on the bill.

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robbiev - singin' off key
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$2 bill

I don't seem to see it, but I don't know if this is an accurate picture.

ETA: changed picture to link

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hudders
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by Richard W:
The one sitting in front of Gordon Brown.

!!

It's uncanny!

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robbiev - singin' off key
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I do see it now. It does appear that the man in the pic on the bill is darker than the man in the original picture.

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Every time I see a good looking woman, I think, "0oooh. There's another one I'll never have!"

Corvette. The louder you scream, the faster I'll go.

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Richard W
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I might have described the wrong person - is it the fat guy in the yellow waistcoat sixth from the left of the seated row?

John Hanson appears to have been white.

What's the point of the comment, anyway?

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Top Kat
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John Hanson wasn't the president of the Continental Congress, anyway. John Hancock was. And isn't the president the one sitting at the main desk, with the Declaration on it?

In the Wikipedia scan, I don't see anyone who looks black.

The original post just makes no sense at all.

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GI Joe
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quote:
Originally posted by Top Kat:
John Hanson wasn't the president of the Continental Congress, anyway. John Hancock was. And isn't the president the one sitting at the main desk, with the Declaration on it?

John Hanson was indeed the President of the Continental Congress, but not during the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

John Hancock was the President of the Second Continental Congress, holding that position from May 1775 to Oct 1777. The Declaration is dated to 4 July 1776 - during Hancock's tenure - and Hanson's signature is not on it, because he was not a delegate at that time. So Hanson shouldn't be in the painting, should he?

Hanson was elected to the Continental Congress in 1780. He was elected as President of the Continental Congress on 5 November 1781. As the Articles of Confederation were ratified in March of 1781, Hanson is therefore credited as being the first person to complete a term as the "President of the United States in Congress Assembled" under the Articles of Confederation.

And no, this is not an excuse to get sidetracked on the old "Washington was Not the first President" myth. [Roll Eyes]

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GI Joe
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Snopes

Just to end the question about which figure we're talking about in the painting, how about refering to this link and clearing it up for us.

http://www.americanrevolution.org/deckey.html

TXs

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Once a Warrior Prince

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Greywarden
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17. Robert Morris

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RangerDog
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Hijack!

I successfully scanned both sides of a new "Color Bighead" 20 dollar bill. (I can post if y'all want) With a pretty new HP 2400 Photo Scanner. So here, at my house at least, dons tin-foil hat I don't have no stinking government intrusioners blocking what I can scan! [Big Grin]

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kjbrasda
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somewhat interesting... I did find another version of the painting here

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Squoval
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Post it here, RangerDog.

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I can't believe it's not Square!

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Squoval
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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And, RangerDog, anti-Counterfeiting is a good thing.

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I can't believe it's not Square!

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tribrats
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quote:
Originally posted by hudders:
quote:
Originally posted by tribrats:
Wish my scanner was working.

You probably wouldn't get any joy anyway.

Many scanners have built-in detection systems to recognise banknotes and stop you scanning them. I tried scanning a £5 British note not so long ago and it refused, telling me I was being very naughty.

Never had trouble before but then again, I have only been scanning my collectible coins and bills for documentation. These would have been scanned eventually anyways even if this thread hadn't come up.

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hudders
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by tribrats:
quote:
Originally posted by hudders:
quote:
Originally posted by tribrats:
Wish my scanner was working.

You probably wouldn't get any joy anyway.

Many scanners have built-in detection systems to recognise banknotes and stop you scanning them. I tried scanning a £5 British note not so long ago and it refused, telling me I was being very naughty.

Never had trouble before but then again, I have only been scanning my collectible coins and bills for documentation. These would have been scanned eventually anyways even if this thread hadn't come up.
This is what I get:

 -

Looking at it again, it's probably the application I'm using to scan it in rather than the scanner itself.

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tribrats
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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Huh! Never got that before. But then again, everything I have scanned so far have been older and/or obsolete bills. I use an Epson Stylus CX5400. I don't use the scan program that came with the printer. I use Photo Impression 5. Don't know if that matters but it hasn't given my any problems. I will have to try a newer bill when I get it fixed and hooked back up. Now you have my curiosity up. Gonna work on that this weekend.

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Alkatr0z
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I've heard for ages that the US government was going to get printer manufacturers to insert code to recognise when someone tries to print out bank notes and not allow it. I always heard its basically because the printing technology for home use is getting better and better all the time so its possible to make a good looking fake.

I've also heard about it for scanners. Haven't tried any scanning of banknotes so I'll haveta try it now.

I have to say on the wikipedia image without zooming he does appear to be darker than the surrounding people.

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WingedBear
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I checked my $2 bill, but all it had on the back was Monticello.

That's what I get for looking at my grandfather's lucky $2 bill from 1928.

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