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Who is on the 100 Dollar Bill? 

The portrait of Benjamin Franklin has been featured on the 100-dollar bill since 1914. Before 1914, there were various portraits on the 100-dollar bill. 

Franklin was one of the most well-known U.S. statesmen, the first Postmaster General, the sixth President of Pennsylvania, and a true polymath. The Founding Father and signer of the Declaration of Independence had interests spanning a wide variety of subjects and studies, although his formal education ended when he was ten years old. 

Franklin was born in Boston, Province of Massachusetts Bay, in 1706 to parents Josiah and Abiah Franklin. His father worked as a tallow chandler, candlemaker, and soaper. Benjamin was his father’s 15th child and 10th son.  

Has Benjamin Franklin Been Depicted on all $100 Notes? 

While there have been many different issues of U.S. currency notes, Benjamin Franklin has only been depicted for the past 110 years.  

It could be stated that his portrait has been featured on every $100 Federal Reserve Notes. The $100 notes issued before 1914 were Interest Bearing Notes, Gold and Silver Certificates, United States Notes, and others that were not Federal Reserve Notes.  

Changes to Benjamin Franklin’s Portrait on 100 Dollar Bills 

1914 Large Size 100 Dollar Bill 

The 1914 $100 Federal Reserve Note was the first note with Benjamin Franklin’s portrait and depicted a profile bust view, facing right. The reverse featured allegorical representations of peace, commerce, liberty, plenty, and America.

The large size currency series was issued until 1928.  

1928 Small Size 100 Dollar Bill 

The 1928 $100 Federal Reserve Note changed to depict Benjamin Franklin facing the viewer instead of a profile view facing right. The reverse was changed to depict an image of Independence Hall, and the $100 bill was issued with this design until 1995. 

The U.S. Currency Series of 1928 was the first issue of small-sized U.S. currency. The notes were small in relation to large currency notes from Series 1923 that had dimensions of 7.438 by 3.141 inches. These notes were noticeably smaller by more than one inch in width and about one-half inch in height, measuring 6.313 by 2.688 inches. The 1928 Series standardized the design of U.S. currency.  

1996 100 Dollar Bills and Enhanced Security 

The U.S. Treasury introduced a new design for the 1996 100-dollar bill to prevent counterfeiting. The 1996 issue featured security features like watermarks and optically variable ink that made the ‘100’ in the lower-right corner change colors as the bill shifted and a larger portrait. The new portrait was different than previous 100-dollar bills and more difficult to reproduce thanks to fine lines around Franklin’s portrait.  

2013 100 Dollar Bills to Present 

The 2013 100 dollar bill was slated for a 2010 release but due to printing problems, it did not circulate until 2013. This design saw greater use of optically variable ink, which was used for more elements in the design.  

The 2013 issue also contained a teal background, a portrait with no border, a 3D security ribbon, and small yellow 100’s. Not all changes made in 2013 were designed to combat counterfeiting. Some of the changes were made to make authenticating 100-dollar bills easier.  

This design is still in use today. 

Is Benjamin Franklin the Only Non-President on Circulating U.S. Currency? 

Benjamin Franklin is not the only statesperson whose portrait is depicted on circulating currency. Alexander Hamilton has been featured on the $10 bill since he replaced President Andrew Jackson in 1929.  

Neither of these men served as a United States President, but both men played pivotal roles in United States history, and both served as Secretary of the U.S. Treasury. 

100 Dollar Issues Before 1914 

Year  Type Feature 
1861 Interest Bearing Note Winfield Scott 
1862 United States Note American Bald Eagle 
1863 Two-Year Interest-Bearing Note U.S. Treasury Building 
1863 One-Year Interest Bearing Note George Washington 
1863 Gold Certificate American Bald Eagle 
1864  Compound Interest Treasury Note George Washington 
1869 United States Note Abraham Lincoln 
1870 Gold Certificate Thomas Hart Benton 
1870 National Gold Bank Note USS St. Lawrence 
1875 Treasury Note Abraham Lincoln 
1878 Silver Certificate James Monroe 
1882 Gold Certificate Thomas Hart Benton 
1890 Coin Note David G. Farragut 
1902 National Banknote John J. Knox 

Who Decides Which Portrait Goes on U.S. Dollars? 

The Secretary of the Treasury Department has the final say in whose face is on every U.S. dollar bill.  

The selection process for subjects of U.S. currency balances historic perspectives with contemporary recognition when it is time to determine whose face graces an issue of paper currency.  

The U.S. Department of Treasury considers “persons whose places in history the American people know well” when choosing subjects for issues of dollars and coins. Federal “law prohibits portraits of living persons from appearing on Government Securities.”  

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Step 1:

Why Buy Physical Gold and Silver?

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Step 2:

How Much Gold and Silver Should You Have?

This question is one of the most important for investors to answer. After all, experts suggest limits on how much of any types of investments should go into a portfolio. After deciding to purchase and own Precious Metals and considering how much money to allocate, one can then think about how much and what to buy at any point in time.

Step 3:

Which Precious Metals Should I Buy?

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Step 4:

When to Buy Gold & Silver

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