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Algeria 5 and 10 Centimes Chamber of Commerce  1916 to 1921
Algeria 5 and 10 Centimes Chamber of Commerce 1916 to 1921

You probably have the coin pictured, Scott, although I am not 100 percent sure of this.

Such coins were issued by the Chamber of Commerce in French Algeria during the time of the first World War. Algeria is the large country in Northern Africa, just across the Mediterranean Sea south of France. They have their own regular coinage, but your specimen is not regular coinage. It is, instead, 'La monnaie de nécessité' or 'currency of need.' There is a good description of this here (use a translation web site if you cannot read French).

In difficult times of war and economic downturn, the governments of many countries fall short in producing enough coinage to support commerce. What generally happens is that private mints step in and start producing coins. This happened in the United States, and produced 'Hard Times Tokens' between 1832 and 1844. In Germany, 'Notgeld' was the result (see our page on notgeld at this link).

Value-wise, these coin are not particularly valuable. They are generally minted of base metals like brass and aluminum, and are not produce with extremely high quality. Collectors don't demand them for their collections, because they are not real coins. A nice specimen may sell for $5 or $10 US dollars. Worn coins will be worth less.

Coin: 5825 , Genre: Islamic Hindu Buddhist
Requested by: Scott fILIPEK, Sun, 17-Oct-2010 17:05:38 GMT
Answered by: Paul, Sat, 07-Sep-2013 10:56:52 GMT
Last review by CoinQuest: Tue, 08-Sep-2015 14:09:01 GMT
Requester description: 1919 Chambre de commerce D'alcer 10 c
Tags: algeria 5 10 centimes centime chamber commerce algerie alger alcer cmes chambre chammber chambres chambers notgeld palm palms tree snake dalger ezsatzmerke ersatzmark ersatzgeld kleingeldersatz otgeld geld kleingeld ersatz ersatzmarke palmetto fronds frond stick branch rod staff wing wings serpent stalk leaves leaf pine oak wreath caduceus twigs stalks spray sprig limb twig sprays sprigs branching branches branched sticks rods winged asps snakes asp greenery leafs boughs liafy bush leave leaved bough leafe leafed leafy leavs foliage wreathed rief reif reef wreathe wreat garland wreth wreah wreaths caddeus caducceus

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Tue, 23-May-2017 07:07:07 GMT, unknown: 17710250