Beautifully engraved specimen certificate from the Dow Jones & Company, Inc
dated in 1989. This historic document was printed by American Bank Note Company and has an
ornate border around it with a vignette of an allegorical woman. This item has the printed signatures of the Company's President and Secretary and is over 27 years old.
The company was founded in 1882 by three reporters: Charles Dow, Edward Jones, and Charles Bergstresser. Like The New York Times and the Washington Post, the company was in recent years publicly traded but privately controlled. The company was led by the Bancroft family, which effectively controlled 64% of all voting stock, before being acquired by News Corporation.
The company became a subsidiary of News Corporation after an extended takeover bid during 2007. It was reported on the 1st of August 2007 that the bid had been successful after an extended period of uncertainty about shareholder agreement. The transaction was completed on December 13, 2007. It is worth US$5 billion or $60 a share, giving NewsCorp control of The Wall Street Journal and ending the Bancroft family's 105 years of ownership
History from Wikipedia and OldCompany.com (old stock certificate research service).
Specimen Certificates are actual certificates that have never been issued. They were usually kept by the printers in their permanent archives as their only example of a particular certificate. Sometimes you will see a hand stamp on the certificate that says "Do not remove from file".
Specimens were also used to show prospective clients different types of certificate designs that were available. Specimen certificates are usually much scarcer than issued certificates. In fact, many times they are the only way to get a certificate for a particular company because the issued certificates were redeemed and destroyed. In a few instances, Specimen certificates we made for a company but were never used because a different design was chosen by the company.
These certificates are normally stamped "Specimen" or they have small holes spelling the word specimen. Most of the time they don't have a serial number, or they have a serial number of 00000. This is an exciting sector of the hobby that grown in popularity over the past several years.