Stamp Scrip in the Great Depression: Lessons for Community Currency for Today?

The Great Depression of the 1930’s led to considerable monetary experimentation. This paper, drawing mainly on examples from the American state of Iowa, examines the rise and fall of one of these experiments – stamp scrip. This was a self-liquidating currency: special stamps had to be affixed to the scrip certificate that financed a fund that would redeem the scrip once a sufficient number of stamps had been attached. Although the results of many stamp scrip experiments were disappointing, the best schemes provided some communities with benefits during the worst of the Depression. In the exceptional circumstances of a major financial meltdown, therefore, stamp scrip might conceivably be able to assist a community in reducing the effects on economic activity of such a shock.

Jonathan Warner Volume 14(2010) A29-45

IJCCRvol14(2010)A29-45Warner

To cite this article: Warner, J. (2010) ‘Stamp Scrip in the Great Depression: Lessons for Community Currency for Today?’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 14 (A) 29-45 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN  1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2010.004

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