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K.I.A.C. Spotlight Item: Alands

The League of Nations passed a resolution which left Aland as a part of Finland, with certain guarantees concerning language and culture. To commemorate this occasion, the Mint of Finland struck 100,000 silver coins. This legal tender equals 100 Finnish Marks.

The motifs of the coin are taken from the history of Aland. The reverse side shows a sailing vessel to depict one of Aland's most important trades, seafaring. The obverse side bears Aland's coat of arms and the text Aland, 1921-1991. Aland is located halfway between Helsinki and Stockholm, its unique, unspoiled Island environment make's for an interesting destination attraction.

Aland was colonized in the early 12th century by Swedes. Peter the Great of Russia seized the islands in 1714 when he defeated the Swedish Navy. Aland was ceded with Finland by Sweden to Russia in 1809. In 1856 it was declared a demilitarized area after the Bomarsund Fort was attacked and destroyed by an Anglo-French force in connection with the Crimean War (Ukraine, charge of The Light Brigade). The declaration is essentially still in force.

Aland demanded reunification with Sweden in 1856, 1917, 1920 and 1945, but all demands were ignored by Finland. Aland freed itself from Russian rule with Finland during the Russian Revolution of 1917 but in 1924 the League of Nations declared Aland belonged to Finland. But would be assured autonomy retaining Swedish culture. In 1951 Aland was given greater autonomy with special citizenship established. In 1970 it became a member of the Nordic Council, participating in cooperation with other nations. Aland began issuing its own stamps in 1984, has had its own flag since 1954 and has a parliament.

However when a private company / consortium, billed itself as the Aland Mint in 1991 and issued 10-, 50-, and 1000- silver Daler "coins", through a public relations firm, there was confusion as to whether they were legal tender, or counter casino tokens for slot machines. The Bank of Finland blocked use of these "coins" and purchased the issue in its entirety. The coin pictured here is the conclusion, A commemorative coin that celebrate's 70 years of Finish rule over the 300 islands of Alands, of which only 80 are inhabited. The language of Aland is Swedish. Alands desire for independence involves a complex political situation.

Past K.I.A.C. Spotlight Features:

1991 100 Markkaa Proof

Finnish Commem. Proof Coin - Click to super size
This coin as encapsulated, indicates only 700 were struck to higher mirror proof quality.

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Page Est. 03 January 2002. Updated January 2017.