Banknote, municipal issue emergency money (notgeld), 20 Heller, paper, Bram-Oesterreich ob der Inns, Austria, 1920
This 20 Heller notgeld was issued in 1920 by the local authorities in Bram-Oesterreich, Austria.
German for 'emergency money' or 'necessity money', notgeld replaced legal tender in times of economic crisis such as the hyper inflationary periods experienced primarily in Germany and Austria following World War I. A massive shortage of coins as a result of diverting metal to the war effort and increased stockpiling of coins by institutions as metal value exceeded actual value of the coin - was resolved by issuing banknotes in smaller denominations. Generally the size of business cards, notgeld were issued by municipal authorities, local banks, public institutions and private companies. Circulation was typically restricted to a specific region.
Predominantly printed on paper, other materials included leather, silk, linen, stamps, aluminium foil, porcelain, recycled paper products in addition to commodities like coal. Characteristically colourful featuring bold and appealing artwork, notgeld are highly collectible.
German inflationary notgeld 1922-1923, www. geocities.com/Vienna/5373/notgeld.htm, 2007, viewed February 2008
Coffing, Courtney L. World Notgeld 1914-1947 and other local issue emergency money, 2nd edition, Krause Publications, Iola, Wisconsin, USA, 2000