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Early traveling money revisited by book


by Neil Shafer

Issues from an organization established in 1873 and titled American Exchange in Europe are included a new book, Catalogue of Circular Notes and Circular Letters of Credit, by Ilkka Makiie.

As stated in the opening text of a four-page explanatory pamphlet, its purpose was “….for the convenience and profit of American Travelers to Europe, and for the furtherance and development of Financial, Commercial, and Social Relations between Europe and the United States.” Various commercial and fiscal functions of the group were described in the following pages.


A listing of Chief Offices included London, Liverpool, Queenstown, Berlin, Paris, Nice, Rome, New York, etc. With such pretentious world coverage, this company apparently lasted only a few years, probably because of overexpansion.

Shown above is an example from this Exchange, a handsome 188- Specimen Note (that came with a Letter of Identification) showing the signature of bearer. Printer was ABN.

Also at right is the front cover of the pamphlet.

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• The Standard Catalog of United States Paper Money is the only annual guide that provides complete coverage of U.S. currency with today’s market prices.

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