There were 14,000 PRIVATE banks that were CHARTERED by USA to issue that money. These banknotes had "NATIONAL CURRENCY" printed on them, and were backed by GOLD and issued by local AMERICAN banks. Those put up bonds with the US Treasury, and then could issue/print 90% of the worth of those bonds.
The red/blue number is the charter number of that bank. This currency was backed by deposits of bonds and gold notes with the Treasury.
That way, the banknotes were backed by assets of those American banks (which of course came from the American people). And if the bank failed to redeem those banknotes on demand in gold or silver, then the US Treasury would redeem them and take over that particular bank due to nonpayment of its obligations.
These were authorized by Act of June 3, 1864
Interestingly, Federal Reserve was ONE of those banks. So it wasn't until 1933 when all these bank charters were abolished, and were replaced with a SINGLE charter to the Federal Reserve.
BUT, that single charter was NOT for issuing NATIONAL (USA) currency, it was for issuing an INTERNAL (US) currency of the federal gov't.
So in 1933, they replaced 14,000 NATIONAL banks with a single FEDERAL Reserve System, which would then issue PRIVATE currency which is backed by NOTHING of real value.
So your 'money' today (FRNs) is NOT a NATIONAL currency, just a private scrip of the United States corporation. Not much different from CHIPS in a CASINO.
In other words, if it DOESN'T say "NATIONAL CURRENCY" on the bank note, it is NOT a national currency!
And that’s how thousands of NATIONAL banks (who dealt in HONEST money backed by gold), were replaced by a single FEDERAL Central bank system (who deals in FIAT money, backed by NOTHING).
Also, in addition to all these private bank-issued bank notes, there were UNITED STATES NOTES (red seal) issued directly by the US Treasury, but those seem to be rather rare from before 1928, so until that time, the PRIVATE-BANK issued NATIONAL CURRENCY, seems to have been the MOST USED paper currency in America.
So until 1933, money was put into circulation by thousands of LOCAL banks owned by private businessmen, rather than by one CENTRAL BANK owned by a handful of rich banksters. I.e. running a bank back then, was a business as any other, and ANYONE with a little capital could start one.
And these LOCAL banks dealt in REAL MONEY (banknotes backed by gold), while the current Central Bank (FedRes) deals in green paper that’s NOT backed by gold or anything of value.
It’s kinda like being an attorney. Back in the days of the Republic, ANYONE with some knowledge of the law, could be a lawyer (no license required), while today it’s a PRIVILEGED occupation which requires a BAR card.
So America was taken over by special interests, where we must jump through the gov’t hoops, in the country that we the People own.
Here's what Wikipedia says:
"The National Banking Acts of 1863 and 1864 were two United States federal banking acts that established a system of national banks for banks, and created the United States National Banking System. They encouraged development of a national currency backed by bank holdings of U.S. Treasury securities and established the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency as part of the United States Department of the Treasury and authorized the Comptroller to examine and regulate nationally chartered banks. The Act shaped today's national banking system and its support of a uniform U.S. banking policy."
And US Code:
12 U.S. Code § 38 - The National Bank Act
(Current through Pub. L. 114-38. (See Public Laws for the current Congress.))
The Act entitled “An Act to provide a national currency secured by a pledge of United States bonds, and to provide for the circulation and redemption thereof,” approved June 3, 1864, shall be known as “The National Bank Act.”
(June 20, 1874, ch. 343, §?1, 18 Stat. 123.)