The Chuckram Board


The Chuckrum Board is a lovely device from India used for counting coins. 

Chuckrum (Chuckram) Board from the Science Museum in London

Chuckrum (Chuckram) Board from the Science Museum in London

From The Land of Charity: A Descriptive Account of Travancore and Its People by Samuel Mateer:

Chuckrams being so small and globose are exceedingly troublesome to count or handle. They slip out of the fingers and run over the floor, and are only discovered again with difficulty. £1,000 pounds sterling amounts to 28,500 chuckrams, weighing 24 pounds avoirdupois, and hours would be wasted in reckoning this small amount of coins. They are therefore measured, or counted, by means of a “chuckram board” — a small, square, wooden plate with holes the exact size and depth of a chuckram, drilled in regular rows on its surface . . . a small handful of coins is thrown on the board, and it is shaken gently from side to side, so as to cause a single chuckram to fall into each cavity, and the surplus, if any, is swept off the board.