Mali chapter of The Banknote Book is now available

Mali cover

The Mali chapter of The Banknote Book is now available for individual sale at US$4.99, and as a free download to subscribers.

At the time of initial publication, this 6-page catalog covers every note (44 types and varieties, including 10 notes unlisted in the SCWPM) issued by the Banque de la République du Mali (Bank of the Republic of Mali) from 1960 to 1967, and the Banque Centrale du Mali (Central Bank of Mali) from 1970 to 1983.

Each chapter of The Banknote Book includes detailed descriptions and background information, full-color images, and accurate valuations. The Banknote Book also features:
  • Sharp color images of note’s front and back without overlap
  • Face value or date of demonetization if no longer legal tender
  • Specific identification of all vignette elements
  • Security features described in full
  • Printer imprint reproduced exactly as on note
  • Each date/signature variety assigned an individual letter
  • Variety checkboxes for tracking your collection and want list
  • Red stars highlight the many notes missing from the SCWPM
  • Date reproduced exactly as on note
  • Precise date of introduction noted when known
  • Replacement note information
  • Signature tables, often with names and terms of service
  • Background information for historical and cultural context
  • Details magnified to distinguish between note varieties
  • Bibliographic sources listed for further research

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The Challenge: Identify buildings and dams on Mali's banknotes

Today I’m inaugurating a new feature on The Challenge.

Anyone who has downloaded chapters of The Banknote Book catalog knows that I take pains to precisely identify all the people, places, and objects depicted on banknotes. However, sometimes precise identifications remain elusive despite all the efforts of myself and various contributors. This frustrates me both as an author and a collector because it’s my belief that if a country has chosen to feature something on one of its notes, it must have some particular historical or cultural significance and it deserves better than a generic description.

So I’m turning to the power of crowdsourcing with The Challenge, an open call for help in identifying certain design elements which have heretofore defied identification.

If you can precisely identify the proper name and location of any of the following—or have a lead which you think might be useful—please post a comment, preferably including a URL which links to evidence supporting your identification.

Today’s challenge is to identify the following items from Mali’s banknotes.

The building on the back of Mali’s 5,000-franc note dated 1960 (P5 shown below, but it also appears on P10):

IDENTIFIED: Le Marché Rose (pink market) building in Bamako.

The dam on the front of Mail’s 50-franc note dated 1960 (P6):

IDENTIFIED: Markala dam on the Niger River.

The dam on the front of Mail’s 1,000-franc note of 1970 (P13):

IDENTIFIED: Sotuba dam hydropower plant on the Niger River.

West African States new signature varieties confirmed

A new signature combination has been confirmed for the 1,000, 5,000, and 10,000-franc notes from the West African States. All notes are dated (20)10. The three denominations have been confirmed with the country code of D for Mali, which makes these P415, P417, and P418. The 5,000 and 10,000-franc denominations have also been confirmed with the country code of K for Senegal (P717 and P718). If anyone has this signature combination on notes with other country codes, please send scans of same.

Anyone interested in buying one of these notes can contact the contributor by clicking the link below. Be sure to say you saw it mentioned here on

Courtesy of Murtaza Karimjee and Abdullah Beydoun.