The colony got its own system of currency as early as the 18th century, and there was also a considerable amount of foreign money in circulation at that time. However, as the extensive shipping and trade through the harbor in Charlotte Amalie increased, the need grew for a bank.
The bank crashed
In 1837 the private company St. Thomæ, which issued banknotes, was established on local initiative. The bank crashed in 1898. The British Colonial Bank took care of business until the Danish-West Indian National Bank was established in 1904.
Reform of the money system
On the same occasion the money system was reformed and changed from Rigsdaler to the monetary unit the Franc (1 Franc = 100 bit). The banknotes carried the portrait of Christian IX on the front and were embellished with motifs from the three islands.
When it was established in 1904, the Danish West-Indian National Bank received special privileges that ran for 30 years. When the colony was sold in 1917, the Americans pledged to maintain these privileges – one of which was the right to issue banknotes. This meant that the portrait of the Danish king adorned banknotes on the three American islands until as late as 1934.