What are complementary currencies?

It would seem that one of the first things a new country would want to get squared away is a standardized currency. But that was not the case with the United States. For most of the early years of the Republic local banks issued their own currency. There were literally thousands of banknotes in circulation around the country. Travelers moving across state lines had to continually stop and exchange money and merchants were forced to subscribe to thick monthly publications that updated

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