SAINT THOMAS and PRINCE 10 centavos 1929


SAINT THOMAS and PRINCE, COLONY, 10 centavos, 1929, copper-nickel, KM2, trace corrosion, VF-XF

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Saint Thomas and Prince is a collection of islands off the coast of Gabon in West Africa. They were apparently uninhabited by humans when the Portuguese found them. It became a major transshipment point for the slave trade. It developed a slave based sugar industry, which transformed into a variation of slavery where people were forced to work but were paid something. Remnants of that system endured until independence in 1975.

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.