France - Emergency

The term "emergency note" covers any note, bond or debt mechanism that was issued as a result of the central bank not being able to provide the service. Typically emergency notes were used during wartime. One group of these notes are the Chamber of Commerce notes of WWI shown here. At the start of the first world war in 1914, France immediately suspended use of gold coins and the conversion of banknotes to gold. As inflation grew, French coinage was being hoarded for its gold and silver content. Merchants were unable to process small transactions with customers. In August of 1914, the Chamber of Commerce of Paris requested, and was authorized to issue small bearer bonds in denominations of 0.25F, 0.5F, 1F, 2F, that would be legal tender among the Paris merchants that agreed to accept them. As financial backing, the Chamber of Commerce would place an equivalent amount of cash on deposit with the Banque de France. Soon thereafter, the Chambers of Commerce of other cities throughout France implemented the same mechanism as done in Paris, and issued their own bearer bonds for local use. This system was maintained for at least five years, at which time its faults started to show; paper money was not able to withstand the constant handling required of small denominations, and the bonds were being used beyond the local scope of each Chamber of Commerce. In 1921, it was decided to issue bronzed plated aluminum "Jetons", in 0.5F, 1F and 2F denominations, to replace the paper bearer bonds. These Jetons were usable across the country. These Chamber of Commerce notes are quite common, as the values generally range from $5-$20 today for good copies.

Chamber of Commerce Issues from France

JP.7.2

1 Francs, Amiens (80)

Imp Du Progrès
9/15/1914

JP.13.5

1 Francs, Arras (62)

12/31/1923

Mayeur, A. FEC

JP.15.19

50 Centimes, Auch, Gers (32)

Imp T.H. Bouquet & Cie, Auch
7/6/1921

JP.16.11

25 Centimes, Aurillac (15)

Imp Delosfal & Germia
1917-1923

Tourdes, F. INV

JP.20.2

1 Francs, Basses Alpes (04)

Imp Moullot, Marseille
7/19/1917

André, F. FEC

JP.23.37

1 Francs, Belfort (90)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
11/4/1918

JP.24.27

1 Francs, Bergerac (24)

1915

Pigeon, L. FEC

JP.27.17

1 Francs, Béziers (34)

Imp Cadenat Fréres
6/9/1915

Magrou INV

JP.27.22

50 Centimes, Béziers (34)

Imp Cadenat Fr. Béziers
11/10/1918

Louis Paul INV

JP.30.28

50 Centimes, Bordeaux (33)

Imp Wetterwald Frères
1917

Rogagneau, F.M. INV
Rogagneau, F.M. DEL

JP.30.30

1 Franc, Bordeaux (33)

Imp Wetterwald Frères
12/31/1926

Rogagneau, F.M. INV
Rogagneau, F.M. DEL

JP.33.2

1 Francs, Brive (19)

Imp Delostal & Germa, Aurillac
12/31/1924

Bordes, G. INV

JP.35.19

1 Francs, Cahors (46)

Imp R. Dumont, Limoges
June April 12 and August 16, 1917

JP.36.42

50 Centimes, Calais (62)

Imp Roy & Valade, Amiens

JP.43.1

50 Centimes, Chalons, Reims, Epernay (51)

Imp Debar
10/10/1920

JP.46.28

50 Centimes, Chateauroux (36)

Imp Mellottee
2/3/1922

Laparade INV
Pigeon, L. FEC

JP.49.9

50 Centimes, Cognac (16)

Imp Lyon, Paris
5/22/1920

Arnaud, B. INV

JP.57.12

1 Francs, Evreux (27)

11/8/1917

JP.61.3

1 Francs, Granville et Cherbourg (50)

Imp Y. Caraês, Granville
7/19/1915

JP.63.10

50 Centimes, Grenoble (38)

without engraver's name
Imp Imprimerie Génèral, Grenoble
11/8/1917

Farcy INV

JP.63.21

1 Francs, Grenoble (38)

Imp Imprimerie Génèral, Grenoble
11/8/1917

Coquand SC
Farcy DEL

JP.65.14

50 Centimes, Roche sur Yon (85)

Imp Moderne, Nantes
1915

JP.65.17

1 Franc, Roche sur Yon (85)

Imp Moderne, Nantes
1915

JP.65.26

25 Centimes, Roche sur Yon (85)

Imp Moderne, Nantes
1916

JP.69.25

1 Franc, Le Mans (72)

Imp H.D.
1/24/1922

JP.70.6

1 Franc, Le Puy (43)

Imp A. Waton, St. Etienne
1/1/1920

JP.70.7

25 Centimes, Le Puy (43)

Imp A. Waton, St. Etienne
1/1/1920

JP.71.31

25 Centimes, Le Treport (76)

JP.76.6

1 Francs, Lure (70)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
9/25/1915

JP.77.26

50 Centimes, Lyon (69)

Imp Rey, Lyon
6/15/1922

Teston, J. INV
Deuverche SC

JP.77.27

1 Franc, Lyon (69)

Imp Rey, Lyon
6/15/1922

Larbitray, M. INV
Arnaud, B. SC

JP.79.18

2 Francs, Marseille (13)

Imp Moullot - Marseille
8/12/1914

Valère Bernard INV

JP.82.35

1 Francs, Mont de Marsan (40)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
11/23/1917

JP.84.51

50 Centimes, Montluçon - Gannat (03)

Imp Herbin & Bouchè, Montluçon
4/12/1920

JP.86.1

50 Centimes, Moulins et Lapalisse (03)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
5/12/1916

JP.88.12

2 Francs, Nantes (44)

Imp Moderne, Nantes

JP.89.19

50 Centimes, Narbonne (11)

Imp Berger-Levrault, Nancy - Paris - Strasbourg
1/13/1921

JP.91.4

50 Centimes, Nice (06)

Imp Robaudy, Cannes
4/19/1917

Simon, M. INV

JP.91.5

1 Franc, Nice (06)

4/19/1917

Simon, M. INV

JP.91.7

1 Franc, Nice (06)

Imp Robaudy, Cannes
4/19/1917

Simon, M. INV

JP.91.9

50 Centimes, Nice (06)

Imp Robaudy, Cannes
4/30/1920

Moussa, G.A. INV

JP.91.11

1 Franc, Nice (06)

Series 89
Imp Robaudy, Imp. Cannes
4/30/1920

Imbert & Cie INV

JP.91.18

25 Centimes, Nice (06)

Series 11
Imp Barma, Nice

Imbert & Cie INV

JP.93.3

1 Franc, Niort (79)

Imp Richard, Paris
9/30/1915

JP.94.3

25 Centimes, Nord et Pas-de-Calais (59,62)

12/31/1925

JP.94.4

50 Centimes, Nord et Pas-de-Calais (59,62)

12/31/1925

JP.94.5

1 Franc, Nord et Pas-de-Calais (59,62)

12/31/1925

JP.96.5

50 Centimes, Orléans et Blois (45,41)

Imp du Loiret
5/15/1924

JP.97.10

50 Centimes, Paris (75)

3/10/1920

JP.97.23

1 Franc, Paris (75)

Imp Chaix, Paris
3/10/1920

Fraipont, G. INV

JP.97.28

2 Franc, Paris (75)

3/10/1920

JP.97.31

50 Centimes, Paris (75)

Imp E.H. Delaporte, Pris
3/10/1920

Fraipont, G. INV

JP.97.36

1 Franc, Paris (75)

3/10/1920

JP.98.23

1 Franc, Périgeux (24)

Imp Ronteix, Périgeux
11/5/1917

JP.100.12

1 Franc, Perpignan (66)

Imp P. Morer-Benezet, Perpignan
11/11/1915

JP.100.27

50 Franc, Perpignan (66)

Imp P. Morer-Benezet, Perpignan
10/22/1919

JP.101.1

50 Franc, Poitiers (86)

Imp G. Paré, Angers
10/1915

Andre, L. INV

JP.102.12

1 Franc, Région Provençal

Imp Marseillaise
12/31/1922

Moul, Ch. INV

JP.106.2

1 Franc, Roanne (42)

6/28/1915

JP.106.9

50 Centimes, Roanne (42)

7/18/1917

Coquard, J. INV
De Meyère, M. SC

JP.107.19

1 Franc, Rochefort-sur-Mer (17)

Imp Keller Fréres, Angouléme
2/25/1920

JP.110.62

1 Franc, Rouen (76)

Imp Moderne, Nantes
1920

JP.111.5

1 Franc, Saint Brieuc (22)

Imp R. Prud homme, St. Brieuc

JP.113.22

1 Franc, Saint Dizier (52)

6/7/1921

JP.114.5

25 Centimes, Saint Etienne (42)

Imp A. Waton, St. Etienne
1/12/1921

JP.116.3

1 Francs, Saint-Quentin (02)

6/30/1925

De Ruaz, E. INV

JP.118.10

50 Centimes, Sens (89)

Imp Nouvelle E. Francois, Troyes
8/12/1920

JP.119.1

1 Franc, Tarare (69)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris

JP.120.14

1 Franc, Tarbes (65)

Imp L. Cassan Aîné, Toulouse
9/23/1920

JP.121.30

50 Centimes, Toulon (83)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
12/23/1920

JP.121.31

1 Franc, Toulon (83)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
12/23/1920

JP.124.15

25 Centimes, Troyes (124)

1/1/1926

JP.127.3

1 Franc, Valence et de la Drome (26)

2/23/1915

JP.128.12

1 Franc, Vienne (38)

Imp B. Arnaud, Lyon - Paris
1/18/1916

Chamber of Commerce Issues from Algeria

JP.138.1

50 Centimes, Bône, Algeria

Imp Moullot - Marseille
5/18/1915