Depictions of Slavery in Confederate and Southern States Currency
Original Acrylic on Canvas Paintings by

Tour Schedule
Critical Acclaim
Press Reviews
Artist Statement
View Exhibition
Exhibition Catalogue
Feedback Form
Your Comments
Public Lectures
Avery Research Center


Feedback From Visitors


The paintings are fantastic. The colors and the details are so clear and so sharp, it's as though the scenes and the people have either jumped off the canvas and taken on life or I have somehow joined them in the canvas.

That is communicating with the artist on a level that I have never experienced before.
Hats off to you, Mr. Jones.

Alice Blackburn


Thank you for this insightful look into the history of this country. 
As a Black in America, this is something that I can add to my knowledge base about the world my ancestors lived in.          

 B. M. H


I received a brochure from someone who attended the exhibit and found even the  brochure to be exquisite.  What a wonderful collection of work.  Will the exhibit be in Atlanta--or for that matter, what is the traveling schedule of the exhibit.



It is absolutely amazing to have captured these scenes from paper currency.  John Jones' findings and renderings have brought visual reality to mental images I have had of slavery.  And oh yes, with so much color.  A time in history which so often wants to be forgotten, avoided, and skipped over has been brought to an emotionally stirring forefront once again.  Bravo Mr. Jones!!

Please let me know when this exhibit will come to the Chapel Hill, North Carolina area.  If not how can I be instrumental to ensure that this exhibition can be shared with people here?

P. B F.


Those are some happy looking slaves! Very propagandistic. I was struck by Moneta, which seems to be telling the Southern Whites, if you have slaves and grow cotton, you'll get rich.

There must have been a lot of propaganda in the South about how much better life was, with the slave economy. Very interesting to see your images and think about what they really meant.



Mr. Jones might want to consider publishing his paintings in book form in the same manner as Don Troiani with his Civil War prints.  If the appropriate notes were included with the prints, there could be a diverse market for the book. 

That said, it is important to remember that history is what is was...not what modern day revisionists would like to make it.  Yes, it is true that several southern notes featured slave scenes, but the majority did not.  To get a better perspective, check Grover Criswell's book on Confederate and Southern States Currency.  Of the notes issued by the central government, i.e., the Confederate States of America, only six of seventy two note types feature slave scenes. 

In the case of individual state notes, slave scenes are also limited.  The relative scarcity of slave scenes is part of the reason they are now highly sought after by collectors.



My daughter and I met Mr. Jones and his son in Columbia, SC in August. I was quite impressed with the art work and remembered seeing other collections of Mr. Jones work in Charleston at a fine art Gallery. To make a long story short, we visited the Avery Research Institute and thoroughly enjoyed the exhibition and shared the information with all our friends and family.
Thank you so much for your vision and passion.

(Look were God has brought us from)

Karen and Joelle (7 years old).

PS. My daughter affectionately refers to the collection as "We are on the Money"

Slavery, the culture of the southern states and their historical links have long interested me. When given the opportunity to visit friends now living in America (on Lake Hartwell, nr. Clemson, S.C.) for our honeymoon, we were eager to make the most of our trip of two weeks. Sadly, due to the events of Sept. 11th, we missed two lectures on 'growing up Gullah', and the language of Gullah at Clemson University, but hoped to make up for it when visiting Charleston.

After wandering the streets of downtown Charleston searching for what we thought was the Slave Mart Museum, we finally came across the Avery Research Centre. It was here that we were treated to a guided tour, and then the most poignant exhibition I think I have ever visited. The source for interpretation was fascinating, the execution was colourful and poignant, whilst being thought provoking to the viewer. We were enthralled!

Prior to our visit to the 'States, I was offered a position here in my hometown of Lichfield, Staffordshire (U.K.) at the Erasmus Darwin Centre, situated in the historic Cathedral Close. Erasmus was Charles' Grandfather, but little known to the world. However, he along with friends Josiah Wedgwood and Joseph Wright of Derby, campaigned for the abolition of slavery.

In my new post of Marketing & Events Officer, I wish to regularly highlight this facet of Darwin during the month of October, next year, which is Black History month, here in the U.K.

I would dearly love to make contacts with anyone who might be willing to make the trip, to enlighten audiences in this country, by way of art, spoken word, music; anything would be considered.

We enjoyed the color of money exhibition and I am sure that it would be well received here, if it could be considered?

Here's to making more links across the Atlantic! 

Best Wishes,



Very good display, although the war wasn't about slavery as we all know (those that are truly understanding with the war
 between the states). This is for all the ignorant people that hate the South - I wish you people would stop being ugly to the South.  Our men fought for their nation and to protect the south from invaders (North).  It is not well known by people that VERY few southern people even owned slaves.  I know a great picture to add to your collection - show all the tribes in Africa that invaded other tribes in Africa with the hopes of catching and selling their own people to whites (yes - even Northern whites) - that would be a great one for people to look at.  It was said by ole "honest Abe" that if he knew the war would have caused the end to slavery he would have not dared to fight it. Stop saying what everyone wants to hear and read a history book, please!


Feedback from Visitors at The Avery Museum

"I was deeply moved.  The stories of the lives of slaves via pictures is an excellent reminder of what was and what is...

I wish this exhibit could come to my home town in Ohio.



"The exhibit was exceptional; very educational"

Summerville, SC


"Thank you! I've never seen anything like it!

Windsor, VT


"We feel privileged to see Avery.  The paintings by Mr. Jones were discussed in the Arts section of the N.Y. Times in May (2001). We are glad to see it in person!"  (Cambria Heights, N.Y.)


"The haunting memory of the exhibit - I had to see it a second time.  The proof of the exploitation."

Bronx, NY


"Valuable and Important exhibit! I hope it will travel intact to other places in the US."

Asheville, NC


"What a relief to fill in the blanks of history"

North Hampton, MA


"This exhibit should be required for all those who claim that the "Civil War wasn't about slavery." What clever indications of the fact that the South defined itself in terms of slavery?"

Amherst, MA


"These paintings are very beautiful and informative about our heritage."

Charleston, SC


"Provoking and well executed exhibit" Madison, WI


"Great education; good time to see the South in its proper perspective!"

Holland, MI


"Thanks for the experience!" Pittsburgh, PA


"This is a very special place" Lexington, KY


"This has given me a different view of my history. Thank You!"

Lexington, KY


"This exhibit is wonderful.  The artist shows expressions of creativity."

Lexington, KY


"Well done and culturally interesting"  Huntington Valley, PA


"Most interesting and enjoyable"  Newport News, VA


"Most interesting exhibit-well displayed."  Durham, NC


"A wonderful depiction of history!"  "It is fascinating to see the art of money displayed so beautifully."  North Berwick, ME


"Informative-proof that we were the source of their income!"  This is the heritage that Old Wragg supporters mean."  Charleston, SC


"Brilliant concept and a service to us all."  Washington, DC


"Excellent-The Color of Money was outstanding."  Upland, CA


"Never to be forgotten."  Columbia, SC


"A new view on Currency." Charleston, SC


"The use of colors, the idea for the exhibit, the location and history of this building - all are grand."  Charleston, SC


"Wow! One of the most moving experiences of my life."  State College, PA


"This is wonderful!  The students will have a deeper sense of who and where they are from."

North Charleston, SC


"Quite impressive!  Mr. Jones has done a fantastic work."  Greensboro, NC


"Profound- our people need to know," Atlanta, GA


" Cotton remains almost sacred to our people.  We still feel the blood, sweat and tears our ancestors shed in its fields."  Bladensburg, MD


" Very interesting and a point of view which appears not very often in South Carolina."

Eaubonne, France


"Quite interesting and instructive!  I wish I could come again."

Tokyo, Japan


"We were very happy to get some really interesting facts about Afro-American culture."



"The John Jones artwork was very impressive-message and art impressive.  I am glad to hear about the outreach program.  Keep up the good work!"

Knoxville, TN


"Revelatory!! Fascinating!"

Washington, DC