National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States federal government's official list of districts, buildings and objects deemed worthy of preservation for their historical significance. A property listed in the National Register, or located within a National Register Historic District, may qualify for tax incentives derived from the total value of expenses incurred preserving the property; the passage of the National Historic Preservation Act in 1966 established the National Register and the process for adding properties to it. Of the more than one million properties on the National Register, 80,000 are listed individually; the remainder are contributing resources within historic districts. For most of its history the National Register has been administered by the National Park Service, an agency within the United States Department of the Interior, its goals are to help property owners and interest groups, such as the National Trust for Historic Preservation, coordinate and protect historic sites in the United States.
While National Register listings are symbolic, their recognition of significance provides some financial incentive to owners of listed properties. Protection of the property is not guaranteed. During the nomination process, the property is evaluated in terms of the four criteria for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places; the application of those criteria has been the subject of criticism by academics of history and preservation, as well as the public and politicians. Historic sites outside the country proper, but associated with the United States are listed. Properties can be nominated in a variety of forms, including individual properties, historic districts, multiple property submissions; the Register categorizes general listings into one of five types of properties: district, structure, building, or object. National Register Historic Districts are defined geographical areas consisting of contributing and non-contributing properties; some properties are added automatically to the National Register when they become administered by the National Park Service.
These include National Historic Landmarks, National Historic Sites, National Historical Parks, National Military Parks, National Memorials, some National Monuments. On October 15, 1966, the Historic Preservation Act created the National Register of Historic Places and the corresponding State Historic Preservation Offices; the National Register consisted of the National Historic Landmarks designated before the Register's creation, as well as any other historic sites in the National Park system. Approval of the act, amended in 1980 and 1992, represented the first time the United States had a broad-based historic preservation policy; the 1966 act required those agencies to work in conjunction with the SHPO and an independent federal agency, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, to confront adverse effects of federal activities on historic preservation. To administer the newly created National Register of Historic Places, the National Park Service of the U. S. Department of the Interior, with director George B.
Hartzog Jr. established an administrative division named the Office of Archeology and Historic Preservation. Hartzog charged OAHP with creating the National Register program mandated by the 1966 law. Ernest Connally was the Office's first director. Within OAHP new divisions were created to deal with the National Register; the division administered several existing programs, including the Historic Sites Survey and the Historic American Buildings Survey, as well as the new National Register and Historic Preservation Fund. The first official Keeper of the Register was an architectural historian. During the Register's earliest years in the late 1960s and early 1970s, organization was lax and SHPOs were small and underfunded. However, funds were still being supplied for the Historic Preservation Fund to provide matching grants-in-aid to listed property owners, first for house museums and institutional buildings, but for commercial structures as well. A few years in 1979, the NPS history programs affiliated with both the U.
S. National Parks system and the National Register were categorized formally into two "Assistant Directorates." Established were the Assistant Directorate for Archeology and Historic Preservation and the Assistant Directorate for Park Historic Preservation. From 1978 until 1981, the main agency for the National Register was the Heritage Conservation and Recreation Service of the United States Department of the Interior. In February 1983, the two assistant directorates were merged to promote efficiency and recognize the interdependency of their programs. Jerry L. Rogers was selected to direct this newly merged associate directorate, he was described as a skilled administrator, sensitive to the need for the NPS to work with SHPOs, local governments. Although not described in detail in the 1966 act, SHPOs became integral to the process of listing properties on the National Register; the 1980 amendments of the 1966 law further defined the responsibilities of SHPOs concerning the National Register.
Several 1992 amendments of the NHPA added a category to the National Register, known as Traditional Cultural Properties: those properties associated with Native American or Hawaiian groups
United States Declaration of Independence
The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776. The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America; the declaration was signed by representatives from New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia. The Lee Resolution for independence was passed on July 2 with no opposing votes; the Committee of Five had drafted the Declaration to be ready. John Adams, a leader in pushing for independence, had persuaded the committee to select Thomas Jefferson to compose the original draft of the document, which Congress edited to produce the final version.
The Declaration was a formal explanation of why Congress had voted to declare independence from Great Britain, more than a year after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War. Adams wrote to his wife Abigail, "The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America" – although Independence Day is celebrated on July 4, the date that the wording of the Declaration of Independence was approved. After ratifying the text on July 4, Congress issued the Declaration of Independence in several forms, it was published as the printed Dunlap broadside, distributed and read to the public. The source copy used for this printing has been lost and may have been a copy in Thomas Jefferson's hand. Jefferson's original draft is preserved at the Library of Congress, complete with changes made by John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, as well as Jefferson's notes of changes made by Congress; the best-known version of the Declaration is a signed copy, displayed at the National Archives in Washington, D.
C. and, popularly regarded as the official document. This engrossed copy was ordered by Congress on July 19 and signed on August 2; the sources and interpretation of the Declaration have been the subject of much scholarly inquiry. The Declaration justified the independence of the United States by listing 27 colonial grievances against King George III and by asserting certain natural and legal rights, including a right of revolution, its original purpose was to announce independence, references to the text of the Declaration were few in the following years. Abraham Lincoln made it the centerpiece of his policies and his rhetoric, as in the Gettysburg Address of 1863. Since it has become a well-known statement on human rights its second sentence: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life and the pursuit of Happiness; this has been called "one of the best-known sentences in the English language", containing "the most potent and consequential words in American history".
The passage came to represent a moral standard. This view was notably promoted by Lincoln, who considered the Declaration to be the foundation of his political philosophy and argued that it is a statement of principles through which the United States Constitution should be interpreted; the Declaration of Independence inspired many similar documents in other countries, the first being the 1789 Declaration of United Belgian States issued during the Brabant Revolution in the Austrian Netherlands. It served as the primary model for numerous declarations of independence in Europe and Latin America, as well as Africa and Oceania during the first half of the 19th century. Believe me, dear Sir: there is not in the British empire a man who more cordially loves a union with Great Britain than I do. But, by the God that made me, I will cease to exist before I yield to a connection on such terms as the British Parliament propose. By the time that the Declaration of Independence was adopted in July 1776, the Thirteen Colonies and Great Britain had been at war for more than a year.
Relations had been deteriorating between the colonies and the mother country since 1763. Parliament enacted a series of measures to increase revenue from the colonies, such as the Stamp Act of 1765 and the Townshend Acts of 1767. Parliament believed that these acts were a legitimate means of having the colonies pay their fair share of the costs to keep them in the British Empire. Many colonists, had developed a different conception of the empire; the colonies were not directly represented in Parliament, colonists argued that Parliament had no right to levy taxes upon them. This tax dispute was part of a larger divergence between British and American interpretations of the British Constitution and the extent of Parliament's authority in the colonies; the orthodox British view, dating from the Glorious Revolution of 1688, was that Parliament was the supreme authority throughout the empire, so, by definition, anything that Parliament did was constitutional. In the colonies, the idea had developed that the British Constitution recognized certain fundamental rights that no government could violate, not Parliament.
After the Townshend Acts, some essayists began to question whether Parliament had any legitimate jurisdiction in the colonies at all. Anticipating the arrangement of the British Commonwealth, by 1774 American writers such as
Battlefield Earth (film)
Battlefield Earth is a 2000 American science fiction action film based on the 1982 novel by L. Ron Hubbard, it stars John Travolta, Barry Pepper and Forest Whitaker. The film follows a rebellion against the alien Psychlos. Travolta, a Scientologist, had sought for years to make a film of the novel by Hubbard, the founder of Scientology, he was unable to obtain major studio funding due to concerns about the script and connections to Scientology. In 1998, it was picked up by independent production company Franchise Pictures, which specialized in rescuing stars' pet projects. Production began in 1999 funded by the German distribution company Intertainment AG. Franchise was sued by its investors and went bankrupt in 2004 after it emerged that it had fraudulently overstated the budget by $31 million. Battlefield Earth was a critical and commercial failure described as one of the worst films of all time. Reviewers criticized every aspect of the movie, including the acting, script, special effects, art direction.
Audiences were reported to have ridiculed early screenings and stayed away from the film after its opening weekend. It received eight Golden Raspberry Awards, which until 2012 was the most Razzie Awards given to a single film, it won Worst Picture of the Decade in 2010. It has since become a cult film in the "so bad, it's good" vein. Travolta envisioned Battlefield Earth as the first of two films adapted from the book, as it only covers the first half of the novel. However, the film's poor box office performance and the collapse of Franchise Pictures ended plans for a sequel. In the year 3000, Earth is a desolate wasteland; the Psychlos, a brutal race of giant humanoid aliens, have ruled the planet for a thousand years and use human slave labor to strip its minerals and other resources. A few primitive hunter-gatherer tribes of humans live in freedom in remote, hidden areas, but after ten centuries of Psychlo oppression they have abandoned any hope of regaining control of their planet. Jonnie Goodboy Tyler rejects this universal hopelessness and leaves his tribe in the Rocky Mountains on a journey of exploration with a nomad hunter named Carlo.
Both are captured by a Psychlo raiding party and transported to a slave camp in the ruins of Denver, the Psychlos' principal base of operations. A massive dome over the base protects the Psychlos from Earth's atmosphere, toxic to them. At the camp, they meet Terl, the Psychlo security chief, his deputy, Ker. Terl's assignment at this remote Earth outpost is due to an unexplained incident involving "the Senator's daughter", he plans to bribe his way back to the Psychlo home planet by illegally mining gold in areas of high radioactivity. Psychlos avoid such areas. Terl selects Jonnie to lead the mining operation and Jonnie acquires a comprehensive knowledge of human history, mathematics and literature in a Psychlo rapid-learning machine, he begins sharing his knowledge with his fellow captives and, to Terl, defiantly declares that one day, humans will overthrow the Psychlos and retake their planet. Jonnie unsuccessfully tries to blackmail Terl into whatever he wants, but fails, resulting in the death of his friend Samuel as a warning.
An amused Terl shows Jonnie the ruins of Denver and its public library, boasts that the Psychlos conquered all of Earth in only nine minutes in 2000. Jonnie spends time in the library and is inspired by the Declaration of Independence. Terl gives Jonnie a party of orders him to find gold. Jonnie locates a plentiful supply at the long-abandoned Fort Knox, he discovers an abandoned underground military base at Fort Hood, Texas with working Harrier jump-jets and fuel. While they are supposed to be laboring in the mines and his followers plot a revolution and use the military base's flight simulators to train themselves in aerial combat. After a week of training and planning, the rebels launch their attack. In a suicide mission, Carlo flies his Psychlo flying shuttle into the Denver dome, destroying it and suffocating the Psychlos inside. Jonnie captures a teleportation device and teleports another man, Mickey, to the Psychlo home world with a dirty bomb; when Mickey detonates the bomb, its radiation reacts catastrophically with the Psychlo atmosphere, destroying all life on the planet.
The humans face an uncertain future. The sole Psychlo survivors are Terl, imprisoned inside Fort Knox in a makeshift cell surrounded by gold bars, with Jonnie telling him that it was his fault for what happened to his home world, Ker, who joins the victorious humans in the challenging project of rebuilding their civilization. After Battlefield Earth was published in 1982, L. Ron Hubbard suggested that a film version of the book was in the works, he gave an interview in February 1983 to the Rocky Mountain News in which he told the reporter, "I've written three screenplays, some interest has been expressed in Battlefield Earth, so I suppose I'll be right back in Hollywood one of these days and on location in the Denver area for Battlefield Earth when they film it."Hubbard's comments suggest that he saw himself being directly involved in the film's production. In October 1983, the film rights were sold by the Church of Scientology's in-hou
Steven Terner Mnuchin is an American investment banker, serving as the 77th United States Secretary of the Treasury as part of the Cabinet of Donald Trump. Mnuchin had been a hedge fund manager. After he graduated from Yale University in 1985, Mnuchin worked for investment bank Goldman Sachs for 17 years becoming its Chief Information Officer. After he left Goldman Sachs in 2002, he founded several hedge funds. Mnuchin was a member of Sears Holdings’s board of directors from 2005 until December 2016, before, on Kmart's board of directors. During the financial crisis of 2007–2008, Mnuchin bought failed residential lender IndyMac, he changed the name to OneWest Bank and rebuilt the bank sold it to CIT Group in 2015. Mnuchin joined Trump's presidential campaign in 2016, was named national finance chairman for the campaign. On February 13, 2017, Mnuchin was confirmed to be President Donald Trump's Secretary of the Treasury by a 53–47 vote in the U. S. Senate; as Secretary of the Treasury, Mnuchin has been a vocal supporter of proposed tax reform, is an advocate for reducing corporate tax rates.
In regards to regulatory policy, Mnuchin supports a partial repeal of Dodd-Frank, citing the complexity of the legislation. Mnuchin's use of government aircraft for personal usage has come under scrutiny from watchdog groups. Steven Mnuchin was born on December 21, 1962, in New York City, the second-youngest son in his family. Mnuchin's family is Jewish, he is the son of Robert E. Mnuchin of Washington and Elaine Terner Cooper of New York. Robert Mnuchin was a partner at Goldman Sachs in charge of equity trading and a member of the management committee, he is the founder of an art gallery in New York City, the Mnuchin Gallery. Mnuchin's great-grandfather, Aaron Mnuchin, a Russian-born diamond dealer who resided in Belgium, emigrated to the U. S. in 1916. Mnuchin attended Riverdale Country School in New York City, he graduated from Yale University in 1985 with a bachelor's degree. At Yale, Mnuchin was publisher of the Yale Daily News, was initiated into Skull and Bones in 1985. Mnuchin's first job was as a trainee at investment bank Salomon Brothers in the early 1980s, while still studying at Yale.
When Mnuchin studied at Yale University, he lived in the former Taft Hotel in New Haven, Connecticut together with businessman Edward Lampert and lawyer Salem Chalabi as roommates. After Mnuchin graduated from Yale in 1985, he started working for Goldman Sachs, where his father was still working, since 1957. Mnuchin started in the mortgage department, became a partner at Goldman in 1994; until he left the company in 2002, Mnuchin held the following positions as a partner: November 1994 – December 1998: Head of the Mortgage Securities Department December 1998 – November 1999: Overseeing mortgages, U. S. governments, money markets, municipals at Fixed Income and Commodities Division December 1999 – February 2001: Member of the Executive Committee and co-head of the Technology Operating Committee February 2001 – December 2001: Executive Vice President and co-Chief Information Officer December 2001 – 2002: Executive Vice President, member of the Management Committee, Chief Information OfficerMnuchin left Goldman Sachs in 2002 after 17 years of employment, with an estimated $46 million of company stock and $12.6 million in compensation that he received in the months prior to his departure.
After he left Goldman Sachs in 2002, Mnuchin worked as vice-chairman of hedge fund ESL Investments, owned by his Yale roommate Edward Lampert. The following year, he established the company SFM Capital Management together with financier George Soros. Mnuchin founded a hedge fund called Dune Capital Management, named for a spot near his house in The Hamptons, in 2004 with two former Goldman partners. After its founding, Mnuchin served as the CEO of the company; the firm invested in at least two Donald Trump projects, the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Honolulu and its namesake in Chicago. Dune Capital Management and other lenders to the skyscraper in Chicago were sued by Trump before a settlement was reached. Mnuchin was outbid by Lone Star Funds on a portfolio of residential mortgage-backed collateralized debt obligations being sold by Merrill Lynch during the financial crisis, which sold for $6.7 billion. Mnuchin has been criticized for his use of offshore entities for investment purposes as a hedge-fund manager, a common practice in the industry.
Mnuchin has stated: "In no way did I use to avoid U. S. taxes." In 2009, a group led by Mnuchin bought California-based residential lender IndyMac, in receivership by the FDIC and owned $23.5 billion in commercial loans and mortgage-backed securities. The purchase price was a $4.7 billion discount to its book value. Mnuchin's investment group included George Soros, hedge-fund manager John Paulson, former Goldman Sachs executive J. Christopher Flowers, Dell Computer founder Michael Dell; the FDIC agreed to retain some of the more problematic assets of the bank, signed a loss-sharing agreement. The FDIC was estimated to be required to pay $2.4 billion to IndyMac under the shared loss agreement. After purchasing IndyMac, renamed OneWest Bank, Mnuchin served as chairman. OneWest bought several other failed banks including First Federal Bank of California in 2009 and La Jolla Bank in 2010. Furthermore, OneWest bought a portfolio belonging to Citi Holdings for $1.4 billion. OneWest was profitable one year after Mnuchin had bought it, it became the largest bank of Southern California, with assets worth $27 billion.
In 2015, Mnuchin sold OneWest to CIT Group for $3.4 billion. After the acquisition by CIT, Mnuchin remained at OneWest
Executive Order 6102
Executive Order 6102 is a United States presidential executive order signed on April 5, 1933, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt "forbidding the Hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion, gold certificates within the continental United States"; the order was made under the authority of the Trading with the Enemy Act of 1917, as amended by the Emergency Banking Act the previous month. The limitation on gold ownership in the U. S. was repealed after President Gerald Ford signed a bill legalizing private ownership of gold coins and certificates by an act of Congress codified in Pub. L. 93–373 which went into effect December 31, 1974. The stated reason for the order was that hard times had caused "hoarding" of gold, stalling economic growth and making the depression worse; the New York Times, on April 6, 1933, p. 16, wrote under the headline "Hoarding of Gold", "The Executive Order issued by the President yesterday amplifies and particularizes his earlier warnings against hoarding. On March 6, taking advantage of a wartime statute that had not been repealed, he issued Presidential Proclamation 2039 that forbade the hoarding'of gold or silver coin or bullion or currency', under penalty of $10,000 and/or up to five to ten years imprisonment."The main rationale behind the order was to remove the constraint on the Federal Reserve which prevented it from increasing the money supply during the depression.
By the late 1920s, the Federal Reserve had hit the limit of allowable credit that could be backed by the gold in its possession. Executive Order 6102 required all persons to deliver on or before May 1, 1933, all but a small amount of gold coin, gold bullion, gold certificates owned by them to the Federal Reserve, in exchange for $20.67 per troy ounce. Under the Trading with the Enemy Act of 1917, as amended by the passed Emergency Banking Act of March 9, 1933, violation of the order was punishable by fine up to $10,000 or up to ten years in prison, or both. Order 6102 exempted "customary use in industry, profession or art", a provision that covered artists, jewelers and sign makers among others; the order further permitted any person to own up to $100 in gold coins. The same paragraph exempted "gold coins having recognized special value to collectors of rare and unusual coins"; that protected recognized gold coin collections from legal seizure and melting. The price of gold from the Treasury for international transactions was raised by the Gold Reserve Act to $35 an ounce.
The resulting profit that the government realized funded the Exchange Stabilization Fund established by the Gold Reserve Act in 1934. The regulations prescribed within Executive Order 6102 were modified by Executive Order 6111 of April 20, 1933, both of which were revoked and superseded by Executive Orders 6260 and 6261 of August 28 and 29, 1933, respectively. Executive Order 6102 led to the extreme rarity of the 1933 Double Eagle gold coin; the order caused all gold coin production to cease and all 1933 minted coins to be destroyed. About 20 illegal coins were stolen, leading to a standing United States Secret Service warrant for arrest and confiscation of the coin. A legalized surviving coin sold for over $7.5 million in 2002, making it one of the most valuable coins in the world. Numerous individuals and companies were prosecuted related to President Roosevelt's Executive Order 6102; the prosecutions took place under subsequent Executive Orders 6111, 6260, 6261 and the Gold Reserve Act of 1934.
There was a need to strengthen Executive Order 6102, as the one prosecution under the order was ruled invalid by federal judge John M. Woolsey, on the grounds that the order was signed by the President, not the Secretary of the Treasury as required; the circumstances of the case were that a New York attorney named Frederick Barber Campbell had one deposit at Chase National Bank of over 5,000 troy ounces of gold. When Campbell attempted to withdraw the gold, Chase refused, Campbell sued Chase. A federal prosecutor indicted Campbell on the following day for failing to surrender his gold; the prosecution of Campbell failed, but the authority of the federal government to seize gold was upheld, Campbell's gold was confiscated. The case was cause for the Roosevelt administration to issue a new order under the signature of the Secretary of the Treasury, Henry Morgenthau, Jr. Executive Orders 6260, 6261, related to the seizure of gold and the prosecution of gold hoarders. A few months Congress passed the Gold Reserve Act of 1934 which ratified President Roosevelt's orders.
A new set of Treasury regulations was issued providing civil penalties of confiscation of all gold and imposition of fines equal to double the value of the gold seized. Prosecutions of U. S. citizens and non-citizens followed the new orders, with a few notable cases: Gus Farber, a diamond and jewelry merchant from San Francisco, was prosecuted for the sale of thirteen $20 gold coins without a license. Secret Service agents discovered the sale with the help of the buyer. Farber, his father, 12 others were arrested in four American cities after a sting operation conducted by the United States Secret Service; the arrests took place in New York and three California cities, San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland. Morris Anolik was arrested in New York with $5,000 in U. S. and foreign gold coins.
Magna Carta Libertatum called Magna Carta, is a charter of rights agreed to by King John of England at Runnymede, near Windsor, on 15 June 1215. First drafted by the Archbishop of Canterbury to make peace between the unpopular King and a group of rebel barons, it promised the protection of church rights, protection for the barons from illegal imprisonment, access to swift justice, limitations on feudal payments to the Crown, to be implemented through a council of 25 barons. Neither side stood behind their commitments, the charter was annulled by Pope Innocent III, leading to the First Barons' War. After John's death, the regency government of his young son, Henry III, reissued the document in 1216, stripped of some of its more radical content, in an unsuccessful bid to build political support for their cause. At the end of the war in 1217, it formed part of the peace treaty agreed at Lambeth, where the document acquired the name Magna Carta, to distinguish it from the smaller Charter of the Forest, issued at the same time.
Short of funds, Henry reissued the charter again in 1225 in exchange for a grant of new taxes. His son, Edward I, repeated the exercise in 1297, this time confirming it as part of England's statute law; the charter became part of English political life and was renewed by each monarch in turn, although as time went by and the fledgling English Parliament passed new laws, it lost some of its practical significance. At the end of the 16th century there was an upsurge in interest in Magna Carta. Lawyers and historians at the time believed that there was an ancient English constitution, going back to the days of the Anglo-Saxons, that protected individual English freedoms, they argued that the Norman invasion of 1066 had overthrown these rights, that Magna Carta had been a popular attempt to restore them, making the charter an essential foundation for the contemporary powers of Parliament and legal principles such as habeas corpus. Although this historical account was badly flawed, jurists such as Sir Edward Coke used Magna Carta extensively in the early 17th century, arguing against the divine right of kings propounded by the Stuart monarchs.
Both James I and his son Charles I attempted to suppress the discussion of Magna Carta, until the issue was curtailed by the English Civil War of the 1640s and the execution of Charles. The political myth of Magna Carta and its protection of ancient personal liberties persisted after the Glorious Revolution of 1688 until well into the 19th century, it influenced the early American colonists in the Thirteen Colonies and the formation of the American Constitution in 1787, which became the supreme law of the land in the new republic of the United States. Research by Victorian historians showed that the original 1215 charter had concerned the medieval relationship between the monarch and the barons, rather than the rights of ordinary people, but the charter remained a powerful, iconic document after all of its content was repealed from the statute books in the 19th and 20th centuries. Magna Carta still forms an important symbol of liberty today cited by politicians and campaigners, is held in great respect by the British and American legal communities, Lord Denning describing it as "the greatest constitutional document of all times – the foundation of the freedom of the individual against the arbitrary authority of the despot".
In the 21st century, four exemplifications of the original 1215 charter remain in existence, two at the British Library, one at Lincoln Cathedral and one at Salisbury Cathedral. There are a handful of the subsequent charters in public and private ownership, including copies of the 1297 charter in both the United States and Australia; the original charters were written on parchment sheets using quill pens, in abbreviated medieval Latin, the convention for legal documents at that time. Each was sealed with the royal great seal: few of the seals have survived. Although scholars refer to the 63 numbered "clauses" of Magna Carta, this is a modern system of numbering, introduced by Sir William Blackstone in 1759; the four original 1215 charters were displayed together at the British Library for one day, 3 February 2015, to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta. Magna Carta originated as an unsuccessful attempt to achieve peace between royalist and rebel factions in 1215, as part of the events leading to the outbreak of the First Barons' War.
England was ruled by the third of the Angevin kings. Although the kingdom had a robust administrative system, the nature of government under the Angevin monarchs was ill-defined and uncertain. John and his predecessors had ruled using the principle of vis et voluntas, or "force and will", taking executive and sometimes arbitrary decisions justified on the basis that a king was above the law. Many contemporary writers believed that monarchs should rule in accordance with the custom and the law, with the counsel of the leading members of the realm, but there was no model for what should happen if a king refused to do so. John had lost most of his ancestral lands in France to King Philip II in 1204 and had struggled to regain them for many years, raising extensive taxes on the barons to accumulate money to fight a war which ended in expensive failure in 1214. Following the defeat of his allies at the Battle of Bouvines, John had to sue for peace and pay compensation. John was personally unpopular with many of the barons, many of whom owed money to the Crown, little trust existed between the two sides.
A triumph would have strengthened his position, but in the face of his de
A gold certificate in general is a certificate of ownership that gold owners hold instead of storing the actual gold. It has both a historic meaning as a U. S. paper currency and a current meaning as a way to invest in gold. Banks may issue gold certificates for gold, allocated or unallocated. Unallocated gold certificates are a form of fractional-reserve banking and do not guarantee an equal exchange for metal in the event of a run on the issuing bank's gold on deposit. Allocated gold certificates should be correlated with specific numbered bars, although it is difficult to determine whether a bank is improperly allocating a single bar to more than one party; the gold certificate was used from 1863 to 1933 in the United States as a form of paper currency. Each certificate gave its holder title to a corresponding amount of gold coin at the statutory rate of $20.67 per troy ounce established by the Coinage Act of 1834. Therefore, this type of paper currency was intended to represent actual gold coinage.
In 1933 the practice of redeeming these notes for gold coins was ended by the U. S. government and until 1964 it was illegal to possess these notes. After the gold recall in 1933, gold certificates were withdrawn from circulation; as noted above, it was illegal to own them. That fact, public fear that the notes would be devalued and made obsolete, resulted in the majority of circulating notes being retired. In general, the notes are scarce and valuable examples in "new" condition; the early history of United States gold certificates is somewhat hazy. They were authorized under the Act of 3 March 1863, but unlike the United States Notes authorized, they were not printed until 1865, they did not have a series date, were hand-dated upon issue. "Issue" meant that the government took in the equivalent value in gold, the first several series of gold certificates promised to pay the amount only to the depositor, explicitly identified on the certificate itself. The first issue featured a vignette of an eagle uniformly across all denominations.
Several issues featured various portraits of historical figures. The reverse sides featured abstract designs; the only exception was the $20 of 1865. From 1862 to 1879, United States Notes were legal tender and the dominant paper currency but were not convertible at face value into gold and traded at a discount; however some transactions, such as customs duties and interest on the federal debt, were required to be made in gold. Thus the early gold certificates were acceptable in some transactions where United States Notes were not, but were not used in general circulation due to their premium value. After 1879, the government was willing to redeem United States Notes at face value in gold, bringing the United States Notes into parity with gold certificates, making the latter a candidate for general circulation; the Series of 1882 was the first series, payable to the bearer. This was the case with all gold certificate series from that point on, with the exception of 1888, 1900, 1934; the series of 1888 and 1900 were issued to specific depositors, as before.
The series of 1882 had the same portraits as the series of 1875, but a different back design, featuring a series of eagles, as well as complex border work. Gold certificates, along with all other U. S. currency, were made in two sizes—a larger size from 1865 to 1928, a smaller size from 1928 to 1934. The backs of all large-sized notes and the small-sized notes of the Series of 1934 were orange, resulting in the nickname "goldbacks"; the backs of the Series of 1928 bills were green, identical to the corresponding denomination of the more familiar Federal Reserve Notes, including the usual buildings on the $10 through $100 designs and the less-known abstract designs of denominations $500 and up. With the 1934 issue, the promise to pay was amended with the phrase "as authorized by law", as redemption was now restricted to only certain entities; the phrase "in gold coin" was changed to "in gold" as the physical amount of gold represented would vary with changes in the government price. Both large and small size gold certificates feature a gold treasury seal on the obverse, just as U.
S. Notes feature a red seal, silver certificates a blue seal, Federal Reserve Notes a green seal. Another interesting note is the Series of 1900. Along with the $5,000 and $10,000 of the Series of 1888, all 1900 bills have been redeemed, no longer have legal tender status. Most were destroyed, with the exception of a number of 1900 $10,000 bills that were in a box in a post office near the U. S. Treasury in Washington, D. C. There was a fire on 13 December 1935, employees threw burning boxes out into the street; the box of canceled high-denomination currency burst open. Much to everyone's dismay, they were worthless. There are several hundred outstanding, their ownership is technically illegal, as they are stolen property. However, due to their lack of intrinsic value, the government has not prosecuted any owners, citing more important concerns, they carry a collector value in the numismatic market and, as noted in Bowers and Sundermans' The 100 Greatest American Currency Notes, the only United States notes that can be purchased for less than their face value.
This is the only example of "circulating" U. S. cu