Why Are U.S. Dollars Green?
U.S. money is green. The currency in many other countries, however, has multi-colored bills. The $5 bill, $20 bill, and $100 bill are all the same color in the US.
On June 21st ,1788, Congress was granted the power to coin money and regulate its value, but not to issue paper money.
Paper money was first issued by the Continental Congress. This printed money was used to fund the Revolutionary War.
These bills were called “continentals” because they were issued by the Continental Congress.
Since the continentals were produced in such a high volume, they lost much of their value. Thus, many delegates in the Constitutional Convention lost faith in paper currency.
For the next 73 years, the U.S. relied on coins and paper money issued by private, state-chartered banks. About 8,000 private entities had produced some kind of paper currency by the time Congress started issuing its own paper bills.
To ensure no one was counterfeiting bills, the back sides were printed with ink that was said to be made from palm juice. Back then, cameras could only take pictures in black and white.
Paper bills were issued by Congress once again in 1861 to finance the American Civil War.
In 1929, the government standardized the shape and designs for the US currency. They made the bills smaller to reduce the manufacturing costs and decided on uniform designs for each denomination. This made it easier to distinguish between real and fake bills.
They kept the green color because, according to the U.S. Bureau of Printing and Engraving, green ink was plentiful and durable. Also, the color green was associated with strength and stability.