PREV ARTICLE       NEXT ARTICLE       FULL ISSUE       PREV FULL ISSUE      

V11 2008 INDEX       E-SYLUM ARCHIVE




The E-Sylum:  Volume 11, Number 19, May 11, 2008, Article 19

CURRENCY SHORTAGE IN THE ALASKA BUSH

[Inspired by last week's report on dolphin teeth money in
the Solomon Islands, NBS Member & Alaska collector Richard
Jozefiak writes: "This is an interesting story about currency
use today in the Alaska bush."  Below are excerpts from the
article in the Anchorage Daily News. -Editor]

At the general store in Noorvik, an Inupiaq village on the
banks of the Kobuk River, Pauline Morris and her customers
are on a constant quest for dollars and coins.

It's not unusual for a local customer to walk into the Morris
Trading Post with a $500 or $1,000 paycheck and use it to buy
$20 in groceries, she says.

Typically, Morris hands them whatever cash she can spare and
writes them a check for the balance. A stamp on the check
identifies it as change -- it becomes a sort of "faux currency"
that some will use as cash elsewhere in town.

Like most remote villages, Noorvik has no bank and no ATM.
And when the trading post runs out of dollars and coins, "I
have to go out and get them," Morris says.

That means a bank run to Kotzebue -- 37 miles away by plane
at a cost of $170 or more round trip -- to get stacks of
bills and hundreds of dollars' worth of pennies and quarters.

"I get the cash wherever I travel," Morris says.

This Bush banking method has kept small village stores running
for decades. Despite communication advances like high-speed
Internet that have begun to penetrate remote villages, plenty
of people still lack bank accounts, Morris said.

While the cash economy has crept into most of Alaska's most
remote places, its foundation -- cash, itself -- is often
missing.

"In communities so small that there aren't ways to send
funds electronically, the merchants and the post offices
are the ones making the economy go," said Jennifer Imus,
a senior manager for Wells Fargo Bank in Fairbanks.

To read the complete article, see:
Full Story

  Wayne Homren, Editor

Google
 
coinbooks.org Web
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization 
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.

To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor 
at this address: whomren@coinlibrary.com

To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 2005 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.

PREV ARTICLE       NEXT ARTICLE       FULL ISSUE       PREV FULL ISSUE      

V11 2008 INDEX       E-SYLUM ARCHIVE


Copyright © 1998 - 2005 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.

NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster