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L- 332.6 City of Mülheim an der Ruhr (North Rhine-Westphalia) Iron 50 Pfennig Coin with "Wä völl hêt, verdeït völl".

This iron coin was issued by the City of Mülheim an der Ruhr also known as the "City on the River". It was meant to be used as small change. It bears the inscription "Wa Voll Het, Verdeit Voll" or "Who Has a Lot, Wastes a Lot".

As the name may suggest, Mülheim is located in the industrial and densely populated Ruhr Area and on the banks of the Ruhr river. Its history stretches back more than a thousand years to its beginnings as a fortification erected to protect a strategically important position on the river. Because of the rivers importance as a trade route, industry has thrived in the cities on its banks and Mülheim is no exception.

Industrialization began in the region in the late 18th century with the establishment of iron works. Soon after locks were built at Mülheim allowing for further expansion of industry throughout the region. This development of the Ruhr Area's coal deposits fueled further expansion of its iron and steel industry. By 1850, almost 300 coal mines were in operation in the region. The Ruhr river was an industrial highway which led to the rise of Mülheim as an important port city known for iron and coal.

Mülheim, like many industrial cities within the Ruhr area, helped fuel the German military during WWI. Conditions were bleak for workers who suffered because of shortages and often worked for little or no pay. After WWI the Ruhr Area continued to be the industrial backbone of Germany. This coin was minted just a year prior to French and Belgian occupation of Duisburg. They occupied the rest of the Ruhr Area in January 1923 as punishment for Germanys failure to make its restitution payments as required by the Treaty of Versailles.

This occupation was met with passive resistance. Factory workers, miners, and railway workers refused to obey occupiers and industry ground to a halt. The halt in industry and transportation helped fuel a rampant hyperinflation and severe shortages. Doing ore harm to the German people than the occupiers in the end, the resistance ended late that year.

With allied direction and supervision, Germany instituted monetary and policy reform culminating in the Dawes Plan which called for money to be loaned to Germany, resumption of payments for restitution and an end to occupation in the Ruhr Area. In compliance with this plan, French and Belgian troops had withdrawn from the Ruhr Area by 1925. Germans were hard pressed to comply with restitution payments that called for "one billion marks the first year, increasing to two and a half billion marks annually after five years."

Mülheim and the Ruhr Area would continue to grow and continue to be a vital industrial base through WWII until today. No longer a coal town, Mülheim is still home to a mix of industry, leisure, and a rich history. It is also host to the Max Planck Institute for Bioinorganic Chemistry and the Max Planck Institute for Coal Research.

The people of Mülheim, who call themselves "Mölmsche", have historically used a local dialect called Mölmsch Platt. The inscription on this coin uses this dialect. Its origins are in down-high-German but Mölmsch Platt most closely resembles Dutch. Now only spoken fluently by a few "aulen Mölmschen" (old Mülheimers), it is kept alive through language courses and reading competitions for children.