There is quite a bit of South American paper money available on eBay, at a relatively inexpensive cost, given the age. Peru, in particular often has banknotes from its first issue back from 1879 (which often sell for around the $10 mark). On this occasion, however, I purchased a 1 Libra banknote from 1922. I love these classic style banknotes, with figures of dames or allegories on them. This banknote features a woman at left, but it is not believed that she is an allegory, given the pictures featured on the remainder of the series. I’m not sure that this was a great investment at $20.50, but it certainly is a valuable addition to my collection.
In the last half year there have been a few countries, mostly European, who’s old banknotes have actually started to approach their catalog values, many of which are exorbitant. Off the top of my head these countries include nations such as Bulgaria, Latvia, and Estonia. Whereas paper money from the pre World War II years used to sell for a couple of bucks per banknote, these bills have skyrocketed in value on eBay. I used to pass these up because they are not particularly attractive, and because they were all in F condition or worse, but now I am regretting this decision. Well, the proverbial ship has not totally sailed yet, though two dollar notes from these countries and that era are a thing long gone, there are still several deals to be had. I have recently picked up some Estonian money from the 1920′s at a fraction of their catalog values. The following is a sample; 25 Marka from Estonia from 1922.
Another big purchase that I have made recently is this Danzig p14 banknote: 500 Mark from 1922. Danzig is now ofcourse part of Poland, and known as Gdansk. This banknote strikes a special meaning for me, because I have actually visited the structures features on both front and back of this paper money. The front features the world famous cathedral, while the back features a ‘lift’ (I don’t know what else to call it) that was used to load heavy cargo onto the ships that frequented this famous Baltic port. This lift is quite famous because it was one of the largest, if not the largest, at the time … Too bad that I do not have a picture of the back.
I was quite curious about this whole ‘German Vampire Banknote’ thing, so I decided to do some research. I found that picks 70, 71, and 72, which feature a male portrait by Albrecht Durer are all considered to be German Vampire Banknotes. When looking at the picture some people see a vampire sucking on the neck of the young man. This has been interpreted by some as a representation of the French sucking the blood of the Germans through the reparations of World War I. I have tried to show this in the image below:
This article of interest in concerning paper money from Greece. In 1922 Greece issued an emergency issue of banknotes under the Law of 25.3.1922. Many National Bank notes in circulation were cut in half. The left half remained legal tender until 1927 at half face value. The right half was considered a compulsory loan, equally valued at half face value. So if you come across any half notes, this is not necessarily a sign of bad condition.
In the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money these notes are classified as p58-p63. Values are as follows:
p58 -> 5 Drachmai = 2.5 Drachmai
p59 -> 10 Drachmai = 5 Drachmai
p60 -> 25 Drachmai = 12.5 Drachmai
p61 -> 100 Drachmai = 50 Drachmai
p62 -> 500 Drachmai = 250 Drachmai
p63 -> 1000 Drachmai = 500 Drachmai
There was a second issue where notes were torn into 1/4 and 3/4 pieces, each piece redeemed at 1/4 and 3/4 of face value, respectively. These picks are p80–83.
p80 -> 50 Drachmai
p81 -> 100 Drachmai
p82 -> 500 Drachmai
p83 -> 1000 Drackmai
Unfortunately, it seems as these notes are discarded as ‘garbage’ and I was unable to find any images to show. Have an image to submit? firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks.