Tara Crooks
Limitless Contributor

I have the weirdest thoughts sometimes. No, seriously. I started thinking about money the other day. Not just how much I had or how I'd budget something. Literally thinking about money – bills, dough, bank, buckaroos, moohla, chump chang, dinero – you know, money itself. It was right after I replied "Money doesn't grow on trees" back to my daughter's request for yet another $20.00. Technically it doesn't grow on trees, but it's made of paper and paper is made from trees. So there is some sort of relation isn't there? I digress...


We all know from history that money as we know it – coins and bills – haven't always existed in those forms. Before money was made of bills and coins items such as conch shells, ivory, clay, live animals, grain, and even wooden chips were used as currency.


What else did I know about money? Well, apparently I didn't know as much as I thought. Did you know there are actually people who study currency and the history of money? There is! They are called numismatists. What a cool job!


There are some seriously interesting trivia questions related to money. See if you can answer some of the ones below (answers at the bottom – but try not to cheat) and see how well versed you are in the Benjamins.




  1. What is a "Greenback"?
  2. Who made the first credit card?
  3. What's 361 feet high that weighs exactly 1 ton?
  4. How long do bills last?
  5. Why are bills so resistant to being ripped?
  6. How much does a new penny cost to make?
  7. Which one is more fantasized about money or sex?
  8. How many times does "The United States of America" appear on a $100 bill?
  9. In what year was paper currency "bills" first created in the US?
  10. Name three random things you can do with coins?


Good news for our financial planners here at USAA, with only a 1 in 100 chance of having a nonfatal injury or illness, the financial sector is the safest job area out there! Who knew?




  1. The first bills were called "greenbacks" after the green ink used on the backs of the bills.
  2. The first credit card came out in 1951, produced by American Express.
  3. A stack one million US $1 bills.
  4. A US $1 bill or a $10 bill last for an average of eighteen months. Five dollar bills last around fifteen months, and twenties kick around for two years. The larger denomination bills can last up to eight years.
  5. Currency paper is 25% linen.
  6. New pennies cost over 1.67 cents each to make, good thing they last 25+ years.
  7. Americans fantasize more about money than sex.
  8. Twelve.
  9. 1861.
  10. These are really up to your imagination but here are three: Coin flipping "heads and tails", "Wishing Well" sacrifice, and for scratching lottery tickets.




So, how'd you do? Learn anything new?