The 1953 two dollar legal tender note is unique looking because it has a red seal. But just because it's a nice-looking old note with a different seal color doesn't make it valuable. Many of them were printed so the value isn't high. Over 79 million standard 1953 two dollar notes were printed. An additional 3.9 million 1953 star notes were also printed.
On the front of the bill there is a portrait of Thomas Jefferson and on the reverse side there is an image of Monticello, which was Jefferson's main plantation. Each of these notes were printed in Washington DC and then distributed all throughout the United States. There are four different signature varieties, but none of them are rare or valuable.
|Denomination:||$2.00 U.S. Dollar|
|Series:||1953 legal tender|
|Seal Varieties:||One: Red|
|Signature combinations:||Four: 1953, 1953A, 1953B, 1953C|
So why is the seal red? It's because during this time America was still on the gold standard. There were silver and gold certificates in circulation that had blue seals. This two dollar bill was issued as a legal tender note so the red seal differentiated it.
The government created legal tender notes because they needed more money to spend. These legal tender notes were basically loans to the United States government. They couldn't be redeemed for silver or gold like the other notes.
As mentioned, this series is common so the prices are low. Each signature variety is equally as common so the specific variety doesn't affect the price. In lightly circulated condition these notes are valued around $7 each. In uncirculated condition they sell for around $11.
Star notes command a slightly higher price. If you have a bill with a star symbol before the serial number then it's known as a star note. Star notes are more rare. In lightly circulated condition star notes go for around $15 each. In uncirculated condition the price is around $25.
Besides condition, there are a few pricing factors that can potentially come into play. Bills with low serial numbers, high serial numbers, birthday serial numbers, and uncommon serial numbers can make a bill more valuable.
The 1953 two dollar red seal is a bill that looks more valuable then it actually is. These bills aren't very valuable but they are a part of America's history and they can make great gifts.