CHINA SINKIANG 1 dollar 1949 plated


CHINA, SINKIANG, 1 dollar, 1949, Reverse: thick, pointed base 1, silver plate, 39mm, 25.03g, Y46.1, mint fraud or contemporary counterfeit, VF

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The last dollar issue for Sinkiang was made at the Chengdu mint in relatively large quantities. There are several major die varieties. There are several Republican silver issues of Chengdu for which the fineness was, shall we say, poorly controlled. Actual plated specimens are not uncommon. Whether or not some of the plated coins are actual corrupt mint products or contemporary counterfeits is a matter of debate.

Xinjiang (Sinkiang, Hsin Kiang), translates as “New Territories.” In the Chinese sense, that means since the Tang Dynasty, when they first sent troops to try to control the Turks. When I was a kid it was called “Chinese Turkestan” in the Yeoman catalog, which was all we had back then in the early 1960s. The Turks, during the coinage era, were in the Central Asian, Islamicized, trimetallic economy, in which gold, silver, and bronze were all under the direct purview of governments. As opposed to China proper, where the government supplied tokens for use in the market and let the private interests handle the bullion supply. Therefore, the early government issues of silver coins in the Turkish zone, because that’s what the local market wanted.

The big player in East Asia is China, of course. Then there is Japan and Korea, throw in Mongolia. South of China and east of India, but not including, for the most part, the islands to the east, is what we call Southeast Asia. From Burma to Malaya there have been a series of local kingdoms for about 2000 years. Russia, with its Asian Siberia, doesn’t count. We consider it part of Europe.

By “Modern World Coins” we mean here, generally, the round, flat, shiny metal objects that people have used for money and still do. “Modern,” though, varies by location. There was some other way they were doing their economies, and then they switched over to “modern coins,” then they went toward paper money, now we’re all going toward digital, a future in which kids look at a coin and say “What’s that?” We’ll say: “We used to use those to buy things.” Kids will ask “How?” The main catalog reference is the Standard Catalog of World Coins, to which the KM numbers refer.