View Full Version : What kind of money?

18-06-12, 18:08
I am always reading about the early immigrants sending money home, but what kind of money was it? If it was money from their new country how was it changed when it got to the family here, after all they couldn't just nip down to the nearest Bureau de Change, and, how would they know what the exchange rate was! Also how reliable was the postal service, the letters containing money must have been quite weighty so how much got pinched?


18-06-12, 20:57
Interesting question, Margaret. How early, say 19th century? Here's a partial answer I Googled from the Tenement Museum in New York City. Can you get into the link?

19-06-12, 05:10
Thank you Janet for that link, it made interesting reading, I imagine that people in larger towns or cities would have access to some kind of exchange, but some people came from really remote villages where presumably there wouldn't be any kind of Bank (still isn't in some cases! but that that is another story!), still my question has been partially answered. Thank you


19-06-12, 06:41
There would have been smalll independent banks in most market towns, so I guess people living in more remote places would have had to get themselves to one of these bankers in order to make arrangements for money to sent or received.

These small banks would have had connections with London banks, who in turn would have had overseas offices.

19-06-12, 07:07
Thanks Merry, It must have been an awful faff in those days when people were busy on their farms, though they perhaps would have had a farm cart to ride on, I had to walk the several miles to our nearest 'town' (in the 50's) where in those days there would have been a Stuckey's Bank. But, I seem to remember that Banks wouldn't always have anything to do with you if you didn't have an arrangement or an account with them, would ordinary be able to access these facilities?

Oh dear, the more answers I get the more questions I find to ask. Perhaps the real answer is that our ancestors no matter how poor or ignorant by today's standards managed their affairs in much the same way that we do today, just a bit slower and more inconvenient.


19-06-12, 07:24
I agree - they got these things done but it was just more difficult.

Perhaps sometimes the arrangement with the banker might be done via your employer who might be a customer of the local bank? Or maybe via your minister who might also be a customer?