The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 24, Number 37, September 12, 2021, Article 6


An article by Uwe Bronnert on Geldscheine Online discusses a new book by Eckehard Gottwald on the emergency banknotes of the Dillkreis, a rural district west of Hesse, Germany. Below is a Google-translated excerpt. -Editor

Zum Umlaufgebiet von Ersatzzahlungsmitteln book cover Eckehard Gottwald:
On the circulation area for replacement means of payment

A contribution to the history of the former Dillkreis. 2nd Edition,

Hofheim am Taunus 2021. 94 pages, full color illustrations, adhesive binding and cardboard cover, without ISBN.

Available from the author at a price of € 29.00 + € 4.00 postage and packaging, Brückenstraße 45, 65719 Hofheim a. T.

24 years have passed since the first edition of this study. Now the author, who is known for his books on the Frankfurt, Offenbach and Hanau emergency money, presents the collector community with a revised presentation of the topic, which at first glance is quite limited. When leafing through the book for the first time, it becomes clear that the author has a lot to say about the 500- and 1000-mark notes of the Dillkreis.

Many treatises on numismatics of antiquity, the Middle Ages and the early modern period deal with the question of the circulation area of certain coins. With paper money and especially with emergency money, this topic is only dealt with marginally, if at all, although the emergency money was often found far outside the actual issuing area. This is proven in many cases by contemporary reports and newspaper reports. Letters that have been preserved with redemption requests from foreign emergency money holders also provide evidence of the area of ??distribution. However, all of these references are only snapshots.

Gottwald therefore chose a different approach in his study. The emergency banknotes of the Dillkreis for 500 and 1000 marks from September 15, 1922 even provide information about where they were used, because they should be endorsed by every holder on the back before passing them on. An evaluation of these endorsements would therefore have to give a precise picture of their area of ??distribution. However, the relative rarity of these notes stood in the way of this. While Gottwald was only able to evaluate 173 notes (97 of the 500 and 76 of the 1000) in the first edition, there are now 355 vouchers for 500 marks out of a probably originally 68,854 copies and 226 vouchers for 1,000 marks out of the original 25,865 pieces. 3947 signatures and company stamps were found on the 581 notes evaluated.

Almost half of the 2264 endorsements for the 500-mark voucher came from the Dill district itself, almost 17% from the Oberwesterwaldkreis, and 7% from other districts, including those far away, such as Kassel, Wiesbaden, Siegburg and Limburg.

The actual investigation is preceded by a history of the Dillenburg emergency money, which also does not spare the company emergency money. In this context, the rare 1000 Mark note issued by the Hessen-Nassau Hüttenverein in Steinbrücken should be emphasized.

The detailed information is based on the archives of the Hessian main state archive in Wiesbaden and historical editions of the Dill newspaper from the Dillenburg city archive.

During his research, Gottwald also solved a little secret. To prevent counterfeiting and to identify the real 500-mark bills, the printer attached a secret sign that was made by imperceptibly destroying it at any point on the frame. He found the same error in all 355 notes that he examined: In the frame of the obverse, a point is missing on the left of the fourth rosette from the bottom. So far, four variants of the 1000 Mark voucher were known, which result from the different positions of the decorative pieces on the edge strips. When looking through the notes, Gottwald found two other variants.

If the first edition consisted of copied sheets in a clip-on folder, the new edition comes as a cheaply bound book in A4 format. The emergency money bills are shown in color, notifications of emergency money issues and official price lists complete the explanations. In addition, many endorsers are introduced through the rendering of contemporary newspaper advertisements.

The book is not only important for home collectors, it is also an enrichment for any numismatic library.

A number of U.S. Depression Scrip notes have the same feature, where some record is made of each transaction using the note. This allows for interesting studies of circulation and the local economy at the time. -Editor

To read the complete article, see:
Eckehard Gottwald: Zum Umlaufgebiet von Ersatzzahlungsmitteln (

  WBNA E-Sylum ad Sale 15

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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

To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor at this address:

To subscribe go to:



Copyright © 1998 - 2021 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.

NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster