Allied Military Certificate Replacements of Germany
By: MICC Lifetime member #001
During WWII, the Allies issued special currencies for use in various areas recently retaken from the Germans. There were issues for Austria, Italy, France and Germany itself as well as another for Japan. A lot were issued and most of them are quite common, so much so that collectors were lead slightly astray with the German notes.
In 1961, Jim Swails, in the first little booklet devoted exclusively to AMC, reflected current conventional belief when he listed the German notes as being able to be classified as to the four zones of occupation by the serial number: 1 = American; 0 = British; 00 = French and “-” = Russian. Almost immediately, it was discovered that is was not necessarily so; a “-” might also be a replacement note for any of them. Then the cozy serial number arrangement had to be scuttled when it was found that although the Russians did use the dash exclusively, the other three indiscriminantly used 00s, 0s and 1s. So, the divisions for these notes became “dash” and “no dash” as well as those with 8 as well as 9 serial numbers.
Replacement German 50-Mark AMC.
(Not Russian as determined by F monogram to which the arrow points)
By about 1970, some information – previously classsified for whatever reason – became generally available. A small nugget was that over half the German AMCs used by the western allies were printed by Forbes Lithographic Company of Boston and that all of these notes were distinguished by a small monogram F , generally found on the lower right curlique of the smaller denomination square notes and on the bottom of the upper right one on the rectangular, higher denomination notes. Those lacking the F and “-” were printed by the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
It seems apparent that only Forbes printed replacement notes and then only on notes with fairly low serial numbers such as that illustrated. Whether by accident or intent, the Russians were supplied by the U.S. government with glass positives from which to print their own notes, the plates lacking the F monogram. Since no Russian note is known with a serial number under 10,000,000, it seems apparent that this is a determining factor.
Closeup of the Forbes monogram on bottom of upper right curlique.
Therefore these notes may now be divided into 8- and 9-digit serial numbers (with and without an F) – most are relatively common. Then notes with a “-” serial number without the F (serial numbers of 10,000,000 and higher) which are all from the Russian Zone and only slightly less common. Finally, there are the “-” notes with the F (serial numbers all quite low): the fairly scarce replacement notes.
Previously printed in the MICC Numismatic Journal Vol-02, Issue-08