BerkShares local currency come out of a long history of experimentation with local currency and models for increased economic self-reliance in the Berkshires. Here are some examples of currencies used in the early 1990s.
Deli Dollars were issued by deli owner Frank Tortoriello to finance the move of his business from one location to another.
Berkshire Farm Preserve Notes were jointly issued by two Great Barrington farms, The Corn Crib and Taft Farm, to finance start-up in the spring, and could be redeemed once produce was ready to be harvested.
"Berk-shares" were issued by merchants in downtown Great Barrington to reward customers for shopping in locally owned stores.
BerkShares in their current form were launched in September of 2006.