BASEL. Actie Fs.100. brown. No 52. Printed on modern cardboard (a little bigger than A3 format), surely as a reprint of the original share for decorative purposes. Most delicate design with wide historic view of Basel and several Medieval figures. The company was founded in 1862 by the Art Society of Basel. A few years before (1854), this organisation had obtained a concession from the city to organize the first local ferry service to cross the Rhein (between Harzgrabenschanze and Baarmatte). It surely helped that the president of the Basel Art Society was also Ratsherr of the city: Johan Jacob Im Hof-Forcart (his printed signature is on the share, as President). His idea was to build a home for his Society with the proceeds of the ferry-service. As there was only one bridge atthat time to cross the Rhein (linking Kleinbasel with Grossbasel), the venture was a commercial success and thus the 'Kunsthalle Basel' was indeed built, and opened for the public in 1872. In-between, the Actien-Unternehmen der unterenFährezu St. Johann was created (1862) as a separate legal entity. This was done on the occassion to offer a second ferry service (linking GrossbaslerTotentanz with Kleinbasler Kaserne = Klingentalfähre). More crossings followed in the late 19th century, despite competition from new bridges being build since 1877. The Ges. für das Gute und Gemeinnützige Basel took the ferry operations over. Today, the "Basler Fähren" still play a prominent role in, and are a much depicted view of, Basel. We have never seen the actual 1862 share, so this reprint is better than nothing.
Date: 20 June 1862
Startprice: € 200