Bohemia and Moravia are provinces in the north-western and central part of Czechoslovakia. At the start of World War II, German armies invaded the country. The Sudetenland region was first detached from it, then a political entity was installed by Nazi Germany to ensure the government of the territories of Bohemia and Moravia. The protectorate of Bohemia-Moravia was proclaimed on March 16, 1939 by Adolf Hitler, the day after the “declaration of independence” of the Slovak Republic, in reality a satellite state of Germany. At the head of this Protectorate, the president and the government have no real responsibilities. The real power is in the hands of a Reichsprotektor (Protector of the Reich). The various German police services such as the Gestapo operate throughout the territory of the Protectorate and persecute Czech political opponents, the numerous German political refugees who were unable to escape before March 15, 1939, as well as Jews and Roma. The area of the Protectorate of Bohemia-Moravia is 56,600 square kilometers. The territory was liberated from September 1944 by the Red Army assisted by the Romanian and Bulgarian armies (1).
Banknotes from Bohemia and Moravia
The Bohemian-Moravian crown (in Czech Koruna Protektorát Čechy a Morava, literally “crown of the Bohemian-Moravian Protectorate”) becomes the main currency unit of the Bohemian-Moravian Protectorate between 1939 and 1945. The crown is divided into 100 halers. A first provisional issue was put into circulation in 1940. The notes were neither dated nor signed. The first banknotes of 1 koruna type 1940 and 5 korun type 1940 are overprinted with a circular black stamp with the words: "Protektorat / Böhmen / und Mähren / Protektorat / Cechy a Morava".
Above: front of 1 koruna type 1940 (Pick # 1). Dimensions: 105 x 59 mm.
A second issue of 4 banknotes was put into circulation between 1942 and 1944 by the National Bank for Bohemia and Moravia in Prague. This time, the banknotes are dated and have three signatures: Hanus Ringhoffer, Ladislav František Dvořák and František Peroutka. It should be noted that for the two banknotes of 500 korun type 1942 and 1,000 korun type 1942, a second issue was made. The copies of this issue are characterized by a vertical mention inscribed on the left in the margin on the back: “II. AUFLAGE-II.VYDANI (second issue)”.
Above: front of 1,000 korun type 1942 (Pick # 14). Dimensions: 200 x 95 mm.
Two types of specimens
The banknotes are found with two types of specimens in horizontal perforation: “SPECIMEN” or “NEPLATNÉ”. The first type was intended for collectors and the second type was intended for central banks in other countries.
Above: the two types “SPECIMEN” and “NEPLATNÉ” of 5 korun type 1940 (Pick # 4). Dimensions: 130 x 63 mm.
(1) "Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia" by wikipedia.
- "Bohemia and Moravia" by Owen W. Linzmeyer.
- "Bohemia & Moravia" Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, 1961-present, 17e édition (pages 130 à 132).
- Photo archives of cgb.fr.