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With rare exception, securities have always been designed to be bought and sold. Transfer receipts are nothing more than documentary evidence of sales of securities between individuals and companies.
Although a few bond receipts are known, the vast majority of receipts that survive today are stock transfers. Most transfers resemble ordinary receipts that might be used in typical commerce. A few might be mistaken for stock certificates, but they generally look rather plain.
Whether transfer receipts ever held temporary value as securities during the time companies were recording ownership changes is open to interpretation. Whether they may have been legally considered securities is probably not able to be determined by casual examination.
Countless receipts have been designed to record the transfer of billions of securities since the foundation of the United States. The vast majority are ordinary, generic documents meant to be filled in by hand. Receipts of this type were usable for all types of companies, not just railroads.
Transfer receipts that display printed company names ARE INCLUDED in this catalog. Transfer forms with handwritten or typewritten railroad company names are NOT INCLUDED in this catalog.
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