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African Paper Money

African paper money is storied due to the prolonged unrest in the region, with South Africa having a particularly interesting history. The earliest South African banknotes originated in 1782, when the governor of the settlement was unable to import enough coins from Holland. Since South Africa was quite far from the homeland, the governor had to resort to handwriting paper money, stamping them with a government seal to prove authenticity.

Starting in 1837, private banks were opened in South Africa. Many of these banks issued their own paper money, giving antique South African bills a rich historical texture. Eventually, almost all of the smaller private banks were acquired by larger imperial banks, which continued to provide banknotes until the Republic... Read more

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