As times have changed, so has the meaning behind different items considered “valuable”. What was once rare, or had special meaning is sometimes lost to time, and so too this could be said of the $2 bill. The $2 bill has been around for years and has had a resurgence in popularity in recent times. The question remains however, is it truly a valuable note?

The history of the two dollar bill dates back to 1778, when the Bank of North America printed 500 two dollar bills. These were most likely designed for foreign buyers. Since then, the $2 bill has been printed off and on until 1976 when the United States Treasury discontinued any more printing of the denomination. This discontinuation has caused the bill to become rare and highly sought after.

But rarity does not necessarily equate to value. There have been reports of people finding the $2 bill in circulation today, with some estimates indicating that up to 4% of all U.S. paper currency is currently in the form of a two dollar bill. These bills are not the same as their predecessors, and the US Treasury has made them available in limited quantities. As a result, they do not command much of a premium, and they should not be confused with the rare vintage currency.

What makes the two dollar bill so special and where does the monetary value come from? The answer is in its design. The US Treasury prints each two dollar bill with a unique serial number and special printing methods to make them look exactly the same as any other bill but with one very distinct difference: the back engraving. This engraving is what gives the $2 bill its remarkable value, and it’s worth more than the dollar value shown on the face of the note.

At the end of the day, the truth is that the $2 bill is nothing more than a reminder of a bygone era and a source of nostalgia for some. But for those lucky enough to find a bill in circulation, the two dollar bill holds a special place in United States history—and its value to the holder is priceless.