In 1932, at the worst point in the Great Depression, the small city of Anaheim, California, pioneered an experiment in self-liquidating stamp scrip. It was intended as a means of reducing unemployment while stimulating participating businesses. The Anaheim Plan put 157 men to work for a total of 8,750 hours, but proved problematical as a means of exchange. The experiment only lasted three months. Later, Anaheim's experiment was overshadowed by a Yale professor's advocacy of a similar plan and an experiment in Iowa. This article analyzes the Anaheim Plan's potential and its shortcomings while bringing long-overdue credit to this trail-blazing attempt to add to the circulating media of exchange and to increase productive employment in a small Southern California city prior to the New Deal.

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