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    Impressive Treasure Trove of Early Chinese Rarities

    American Bank Note Company Display of Rare and Scarce Proofs from the Early Ta-Ching Government Bank and Bank of China Issues.
    Referred to by the consignor as the "Forbidden Palace Display," this piece is an absolutely elusive and comprehensive collection of proofs from China during the turn of the 20th century, not only in denominations but also in designs. Collectors of all types should first be drawn to the portrait of Yuan Shikai in the upper left. Even though the portrait is familiar to many from the "Fat Man" dollars, those more knowledgeable of history will know that he himself tried to create a new Empire of China, but was deposed in the first year of his reign, 1916. Only one series of notes from 1914 bore his image as a testament to his eventually futile ambitions. As a result, very few notes with his portrait were issued, and most were redeemed and destroyed once he turned against the new Republic of China. Thus, any notes of any type bearing his portrait is very rare. Keen collectors will also notice that there are two Proofs of the 100 Dollar design. These two highest denomination are hiding behind Bank of Communications 5 Dollar Proofs (coincidentally both featuring trains) in the upper left and bottom right of the banknote rosette. There is an additional 50 Dollar note hiding behind the 1 Dollar Yellow Emperor design in the lower left, for a total of 4 Fat Man Proofs.

    Collectors will then notice several examples featuring a familiar face -- Li Hongzhang. These notes featuring the statesman is a part of the only series printed by the American Bank Note Company for the Ta-Ching Government Bank, which later became the Bank of China after the establishment of the Republic. Both face and backs of the 5, 50, and 100 Dollar designs are seen, along with the back of a 20 Dollar design. An impressive set of designs, especially of the large denominations which are difficult to find in any type.

    With the establishment of the Republic of China, the bank's name was changed to the Bank of China (the same bank operating today) and the portraits of its first series of notes changed to the politically neutral Yellow Emperor. Most interestingly, the 20 Dollar design of 1913 in the very middle of the rosette is not known to have been issued in the Standard Catalog. Luckily for collectors, the back for this discovery piece is located to the left of the face. Issues from both 1912 and 1913 are noted in the frame, including both face and back proofs of the highest denomination of 100 Dollars.

    Rounding out the lot are designs from domestic and foreign banks operating in the early years of the Republic of China who also contracted notes from the American Bank Note Company. The Bank of Communications is represented by the back of the 1913 1 Dollar note and the face and back of the 1913 5 Dollar note. A later 50 Dollar design is also seen. The American International Banking Corporation is represented by the face of a Beijing branch 5 Dollar issue and the back of a Canton branch 10 Dollar issue. The back of a Provincial Bank of Kwangtung 5 Dollar design rounds out the notes.

    A simply amazing collection, not only because of its comprehensiveness but sheer rarity of some of the designs and the perfect state of preservation. Our estimate is only a bidding start point for what will be one of the most important pieces of Chinese numismatics to ever cross the auction block.

    The designs included are:
    Ta-Ching Government Bank
    5 Dollars 1.10.1909 Pick A77 Face and Back Proofs
    50 Dollars 1.10.1909 Pick A78A Face and Back Proofs
    100 Dollars 1.10.1909 Pick A78B Face and Back Proofs
    10 Dollars 1.10.1909 Pick A78 Back Proof

    Bank of China
    1 Dollar 1.6.1912 Pick 25 Face Proof
    5 Dollars 1.6.1912 Pick 26 Face Proof
    1 Dollar 1.6.1913 Pick 30 Back Proof
    5 Dollars 1.6.1913 Pick 31 Face Proof
    20 Dollars 1.6.1913 Pick Unlisted Face and Back Proofs
    100 Dollars 1.6.1913 Pick 32B Face and Back Proofs

    5 Yuan 4.10.1914 Pick 34 Face Proof
    50 Yuan 4.10.1914 Pick 35A Face Proof
    100 Yuan 4.10.14 Pick 35B Face Proof
    100 Yuan 4.10.14 Pick 35B Face Proof

    Bank of Communications
    1 Dollar 1.7.1913 Pick 110 Back Proof
    5 Dollars 1.7.1913 Pick 111 Face and Back Proofs
    50 Yuan 1.10.1914 Pick 119 Face Proof

    International Banking Corporation
    Canton 10 Dollars 1.1.1909 Pick S403 Back Proof
    Peking 5 Dollars 1.1.1910 Pick S413 Face Proof

    Provincial Bank of Kwangtung Province
    5 Dollars 1.1.1913 Pick S2398 Back Proof (Total: 26 notes)




    接下來,藏家會注意到一張熟悉的面孔 - 李鴻章。這些以政治家為主角的鈔票是美國鈔票公司為大清政府銀行印製的一部分,大清政府銀行後來成為中華人民共和國成立後的中國銀行。可以看到伍圓、伍拾圓和壹佰圓的正背面設計,以及貳拾圓的背面設計。令人印象深刻的一套設計,尤指大面值的任何類型都極其罕見珍貴。









    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2019
    26th-27th Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 4,319

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    20% of the successful bid (minimum $19) per lot.

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