CENTRAL AFRICAN STATES, 50 francs, 1976 E, nickel, Cameroun, KM11, BU

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What we coin people call the Central African States is the Central African Economic Community. It consists of six nations that all do their own thing, but they all use a single currency, called the CFA franc. The six nations are Cameroon (Cameroun), Central African Republic, Chad (Tchad), Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon. CFA is an acronym for Cooperation Financiere en Afrique Centrale.

It has been habitual, on the collecting side of numismatics, for “Africa” to exclude the Mediterranean coastal states, which are typically lumped in with the other Arab states in the category “Middle East.” Generally speaking, there was a colonial period and an independent period.

By “Modern World Coins” we mean here, generally, the round, flat, shiny metal objects that people have used for money and still do. “Modern,” though, varies by location. There was some other way they were doing their economies, and then they switched over to “modern coins,” then they went toward paper money, now we’re all going toward digital, a future in which kids look at a coin and say “What’s that?” We’ll say: “We used to use those to buy things.” Kids will ask “How?” The main catalog reference is the Standard Catalog of World Coins, to which the KM numbers refer.