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British Empire: East Africa and Uganda Protectorates

Started by <k>, July 18, 2013, 06:16:07 PM

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<k>

East Africa ½c 1908.jpg


East Africa ½c 1908-.jpg


In 1906, the British began introducing a joint currency for their East Africa (now Kenya) and Uganda Protectorates. The currency was the rupee, which was divided into 100 cents. The denominations of ½, 1, 5, and 10 cents showed a crown and stylised floral arrangement on the obverse, while stylised elephant tusks appeared on the reverse.
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<k>



The 25 and 50 cents coins showed King Edward VII on the obverse, whilst the reverse depicted a lion against the background of Mount Muhavura, an extinct volcano, now in Uganda.
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<k>

East Africa 1s 50c 1920.jpg


According to Wikpedia:

The florin was the currency of the British colonies and protectorates of East Africa between 1920 and 1921. It was divided into 100 cents. It replaced the rupee at par and was replaced by the shilling at a rate of 2 shillings = 1 florin. The florin was equivalent to 2 shillings sterling.

Because of its short period in existence, few of the coins minted were actually issued and are consequently scarce today. Coins were minted in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 cents and 1 florin but, according to the "Standard Catalog of World Coins", the 50 cents coins were not released for circulation and only 30% of the 1, 5 and 10 cents coins produced were issued for circulation.


Below is the 50 cents coin of 1920, which is also denominated as one shilling.
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<k>



The 1 florin coin of 1920.

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<k>

East Africa 50 cents 1921.jpg

In May 1921, the British introduced a new currency unit, whereby 100 cents was now equal to one shilling, and the florin no longer existed. Above is the reverse of a 1922 50 cents coins, now also labelled as a half shilling.

The shilling was also introduced to Tanganyika, formerly German East Africa, which was ceded to Britain after the First World War.
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<k>

One new shilling was now equivalent to the old defunct florin. That must have been rather confusing at first.
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See: The Royal Mint Museum.

<k>

East Africa shilling 1925.jpg

East Africa, 1 shilling, 1925.
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<k>

Zanzibar joined the East Africa currency union on 1st January 1936. The Zanzibari rupee had been equal to the Indian rupee. It was replaced by the East African shilling at the rate of 1½ East African shillings to 1 Zanzibari rupee.


In 1936 King Edward VIII came to the throne, though he was destined never to be crowned. East Africa issued a 5 cents and 10 cents coin in Edward's name.

EastAfrica193610c.jpg
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<k>

According to Wikipedia, the East African shilling was introduced to British Somaliland in 1941, and also to Italian Somaliland, which the British had taken and held until 1949. The shilling was also used in parts of what is now Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea when they were under British control. Before 1941 these areas, then known as Italian East Africa, were using the Italian East African lira. 

From Wikipedia:

Italian Somaliland was returned to Italy in 1949 as a UN Trusteeship and soon switched to the Italian Somaliland somalo, which was at par with the shilling. British Somaliland gained independence in 1960, and joined what had been Italian Somaliland to create Somalia. In that year Somalia began using the Somali shilling (replacing the Somali somalo) at par with the East African shilling. The East African shilling ceased to be legal tender in Somalia during 1961. Ethiopia regained independence in 1941, with British support and began using the East African shilling.

Eritrea was captured from the Italians in 1941, and began using the East African shilling, as well as the Egyptian pound, with the lira demonetized in 1942. When Eritrea formed a federation with Ethiopia in 1952, the birr, which was already in use in Ethiopia, was adopted in Eritrea.

In 1951, the East African shilling replaced the Indian Rupee in the Aden colony and protectorate, which became the South Arabian Federation in 1963. In 1965, the East African Currency Board was breaking up, and the South Arabian dinar replaced the shilling in the South Arabian Federation at a rate of 20 shillings to 1 dinar. The Federation was abolished when it gained independence along with the Protectorate of South Arabia as the People's Republic of South Yemen on 30 November 1967.
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<k>

Uganda 5c 1966-.jpg





Uganda 1s 1966-.JPG


Uganda gained independence from Britain in 1962. Its subsequent coinage designs show the influence of the East African designs.

See also: Coins with the denomination on both sides.
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<k>



From Wikipedia:

Tanganyika and Zanzibar united on 26 April 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. On 29 October 1964, the country was renamed the United Republic of Tanzania.

The new Tanzanian currency was one shilingi (shilling), divided into 100 cents, showing its provenance from the East African currency.
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<k>

Kenya also retained the 100 cents = 1 shilling system after independence.
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<k>

East Africa 5c 1964.jpg


East Africa 5 cents 1964.jpg




The final two issues of the East Africa coinage were the 5 and 10 cents coins of 1964.

Uniquely, these showed the denomination in English and Swahili.
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<k>

So the influence of the East Africa coinage can still be seen today, in the various 'shilling' currencies that are divided into 100 cents. Even the breakaway state of Somaliland uses this system for its collector issues.
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See: The Royal Mint Museum.

<k>

Other anomalies of the East Africa coins: after the dropping of the florin system, the 25 cents denomination was dropped and never reintroduced. Also the legend of 'East Africa & Uganda Protectorates' was changed simply to 'East Africa'. And the only denomination on which the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II appeared was the 50 cents coin, because no shilling coin was issued during her reign, and no portrait appeared on the lower denominations.
Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.