Thursday, 22 November 2007

Paper Money History: Norway Issues Paper Money to help Thor Mohlen

King Chistian V (1646-1699)

In 1695 Norway issued its first paper money in quite an unusual way. Thor Mohlen was one of the economic advisor's to the King, Christian V, he was also a merchant who ran some very impressive world trade.

Thor Mohlen

Due to some difficulty at sea with the Germans and Pirates he needed money because some of his ships had been taken at sea. In order to continue trading the king allowed him to issue notes which were to become legal tender. I guess the hope was that he was to use the notes to buy items for export, since the notes were legal tender it would circulate amongst the people and he was given a five year period which was sufficient time for him to have made back the money which could them be repaid to the treasury.

A lot of effort was made in producing these notes, according to Mr. Walt Jellun, a numismatist:

A total of 100,000 Rixdaler Croner were produced. All notes had the Kings monogram on the top center and heavy lacquer seals, a time consuming process, but one which was to act as an anti-counterfeiting device. The tallon or right hand section of the note was torn from the main portion of the note for security purposes, then it was required to be matched in order to be redeemed. The left half of the notes were put in circulation with the right half kept in the Danish archives for security purposes.

Each note had hand written serial number, values, date and three signatures, some twice on the front and then more on the back of each and every note. All notes were signed by Lauritz Mouritzen Thrap, the Exchequer (signature with the flourish), Jørgen Thor Møhlen and Jacob Søfrensen. The flourish on Thrap's signature went to the right onto the tallon. All are dated 10 Aug. 1695 with the 10 August hand written.

For the a full account of Thor Mohlen's notes please read article on Norway's Paper Money History

Some triva about Norway,money and its public.

A few days ago a friend of mine sent me a video and as I researched this piece I realized that there was a collation between then and now. Watch and see for yourself:

In previous examples of the issuing of paper money it was usually to help the government fight and win battles, but Norway issued money basically to help out a troubled merchant. Yes the money meant that the country could continue exporting, but the fact still remains it helped Thor Mohlen. The wellbeing of Norweigens is still paramount to the government of Norway. Other countries should take note of this great example

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