1879 $4 STELLA, FLOWING HAIR PR66 Cameo
GEM CAMEO PROOF. ONLY 425 STRUCK.
The 1879 $4 Stella was designed to be used as an international currency to help facilitate trade and travel by US citizens. The Stella was comparable to denominations of many of the top trading powers, being roughly equal to the Spanish 20-pesetas, the Dutch florin, the Austrian florin, the Italian lire and the French 20-franc. This Stella was also minted the year that the Specie Resumption Act took effect. The Civil War government issued $450 million in paper money, much of which was not backed by gold. The Specie Resumption Act sought to change this by reducing the circulation of paper money and increasing the gold reserves. After resistance from the Greenback Party, it was decided that the circulation of bills would be reduced to $400 million, significantly more than the $300 million that was originally planned. The Treasury was able to accumulate enough gold to back this amount of paper money and a possible economic crisis was averted.