German East Africa coins Quarter Rupee Rupie Silver Coin of 1898, Kaiser Wilhelm II.

German East Africa Rupee Silver Coin, German Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II
 German East Africa Silver Coin, German Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II
German East Africa Silver Coins Quarter Rupee
 German East Africa Quarter Rupee Silver Coin 
German East Africa Quarter Rupee (1/4 Rupie) Silver Coin of 1898.
German East Africa coins Silver Quarter Rupee - German East Africa Coins - German East Africa silver coins - German East Africa numismatic - Coins of German East Africa - Numismatic Collector Coins - buying silver coins for investment.

Obverse: German Emperor Wilhelm II in military uniform, wearing a helmet with the Germanic eagle perched on top .

Reverse: Coat of arms of the German East African Company consisting of a lion and palm tree, within foliage. Date (1898) below.

Reference: KM-3. R!
Mintage: 100,000 pcs.
Denomination: Quarter Rupee (1/4 Rupie)
Diameter: 19 mm; Weight: 2,92 gram of  Silver (.917)

German East Africa (German: Deutsch-Ostafrika) was a German colony in East Africa, including what are now Burundi, Rwanda and Tanganyika (the mainland part of present Tanzania). It measured 994,996 km² (384,170 square miles) in size, nearly three times the size of re-united Germany today.

The colony came into existence during the 1880s and ended with the conclusion of World War I, when the territory was taken over by the British and Belgians and later converted to mandates of the League of Nations.


    The Maria Theresa thaler of 1780 was an unofficial trade dollar. It proved so popular with the natives that
they often would accept no other. The popularity of this coin was so great that supply could not keep up with
demand. Native tradesmen had accepted this coin for so long and with such success that they showed no interest in altering its date or design. Consequently, the Maria Theresa thaler was struck again and again by mints all over Europe to meet this demand. In one of the last colonial applications, the thaler was struck by the Italian government in 1936 as legal tender for Ethiopia, where it was used until 1948.

   Soon after Kaiser Wilhelm II decreed the organization of the German EastAfrica Company, it became apparent that a more diversified coinage than the Maria Theresa thaler would be required to adequately service the needs of a burgeoning commerce. In order to facilitate international trade, a value of three mark was assigned each thaler then in circulation. In order to create a territorial currency, the German East Africa Company, in 1890, set forth an exchange rate whereupon the first colonial coin known as the pesa, was created. The pesa (pice) denomination, long familiar to Arab and Indian traders, was assigned the equivalent value of 64 pesa to one rupie. This minor coin was minted for three years (1890-1892) before being dropped. At this point it was decided that the colony would be better served by abandoning the pesa/rupie valuation in favor of one tied to the German mark. In 1891, the relationship between the German East Africa Company rupie and the German mark was fixed at one rupee = 1.33 mark (4 mark = 3 rupien). The name
rupie was adopted for colonial use to distinguish the coinage from the Indian and other rupees then in circulation.
     Prior to the opening of Africa by the Europeans, the natives and Arab traders used salt slabs for currency. In 1780 Maria Theresa, the Empress of Austria (1717- 1780) and Queen of Bohemi (1740 - 1780), died. She was best known for her skill at diplomacy and for giving birth to sixteen children, thus becoming the founder of half the royal houses of Europe. The “Maria Theresa” was a thaler (dollar) of
eighty-three percent silver bearing the bust of the empress on the obverse and the Austrian arms on the reverse. It had been minted in 1780 as that country’s legal tender. The empress’ demise that same year created an instantly obsolete coin.
These coins were then sold to Arab traders who wanted something less cumbersome than the salt slabs then used in their commerce. This marked the beginning of the thalers’ use in Africa as an unofficial “trade dollar”. The Maria Theresa thaler was an instant success with the natives and soon became the standard currency used in countries bordering the Red Sea and along the coast of east Africa. Long after the British, German, Portuguese, French and Italian governments had introduced their own coinage into their colonies, the Maria
Thesesa thaler continued to be minted for export and to circulate as a supplemental currency.

   In 1891 the company was authorized to mint silver coinage in denominations of ¼, ½, 1 rupie and 2 rupien. These coins were minted in Berlin of .917 silver and to a common design. The coins’ obverse carried a likeness of Wilhelm II in military dress, wearing a helmet with the Germanic eagle perched on top. The legend surrounding the bust of Wilhelm II reads “Guilelmus II Imperator”. The reverse of the rupie coins bears the arms of the German East Africa Company consisting of a lion and palm tree with the date beneath. The inscription surrounding the central shield reads “Deutsche Ost-Afrikanische Gesellschaft” with value expressed in rupies below. Coin production of this series commenced in 1891 and lasted until 1904 when the final two rupien coin was struck. Some years saw no mintage figures as the coins were struck only to meet the demands of existing commerce. As might be expected, mintage figures for German East Africa
Company coins are low as compared to the later, government issues, making them relatively expensive today.
It wasn’t long before Germany realized that the East Africa Company lacked the administrative ability to properly manage the colony. The imperial government, anxious to exploit the colony’s potential and to develop railroad communication within the area, declared a protectorate over the region formerly ruled by the Deutsche Oest-Afrikanische Gesellschaft, settled financial accounts with colonists and Askari natives, and immediately took over all colonial administration. In 1897 the imperial government proclaimed the area the colony of German East Africa (Deutsche Ostafrika) which we shall henceforth refer to as “D.O.A”. Shortly after, a separate Colonial Department was set up in Berlin to assist in development. Coin production of the German East Africa Company ceased in 1904. From 1904 onwards, financial management of the colony was taken over by the imperial German government.