When looking at United States currency, you sometimes hear the slang term “sawbuck.” This is a street slang term for a ten dollar bill. Along the same vein, a “double sawbuck” is a twenty dollar bill.
The ten dollar bill is one of the denominations of United States currency. The first Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, is on the front of the bill, and the United States Treasury is featured on the back. Hamilton is one of only two non Presidents that are featured on currently issued currency. He is also the only person featured on United States currency that was not born in the continental United States (Hamilton was actually born in the West Indies). The image that was used on the bill was taken from John Trumbull’s 1805 portrait that is in the collection in New York City Hall. This bill is the only denomination of United States currency in which the portrait faces to the left.
One of the reasons why the ten dollar bill received the nickname sawbuck was because the Roman numeral for ten, X, resembles the carpentry tool of the same name.