Chinese Silver Dollar
Republic of China Year 21 (1932)
With 3 Birds Over Junk
Sun Yat-sen Chinese Junk Boat Silver Dollar Y# 344
26.88 grams; Silver 900; size: 39.49 mm
Year 21 1932 AD Sun Yat-sen Chinese Junk Boat Silver Dollar Y# 344
Obverse: Sun Yat-sen facing left
Reverse: a Chinese junk boat, Three Birds
1932 Chinese Junk Silver Dollar - 1932 China Silver Dollar Junk Boat Silver Dollar, Y-344. The strike is bold with full details on the ear, hair, and the sails of the junk.
The obverse shows a close-up profile of Sun Yat-sen facing left. Sun Yat-sen was the president of Nationalist China and is referred to as the “Father of the Nation” and “forerunner of democratic revolution” in the People’s Republic of China. He was instrumental in the overthrow of the Qing dynasty and was the first provisional president of the new republic. He is unique among 20th century Chinese politicians for being revered by both the Nationalist and the Communist Chinese. The reverse depicts a Chinese junk boat. It is an ancient sailing vessel that is still in use today. They were used 200 years BC and as sea-going vessels by the 2nd century AD. They are efficient and sturdy and were capable of carrying men and commerce on the high stormy seas as well as on inland waterways.
In the early twentieth century, China had no central bank. The monetary system was based on private banks that used silver as the primary medium of exchange. A year after the Nationalist Party came to power in 1927, the Central Bank of China was established and the country went on a Chinese silver-dollar standard.
For the first two year of the Great Depression, China did well financially and economically with domestic prices rising. But in September 1931, Great Britain went off the gold standard, and many countries engaged in currency depreciation, which negatively affected the value of the Chinese silver dollar on the foreign exchange markets.
In 1933 and 1934, when FDR allowed silver as part of the New Deal, the United States government went on a silver-buying spree to inflate the price in the United States. As the export price for silver rose, silver flowed from China to the United States. This drain of sliver caused catastrophic price deflation which severely hit Chinese agriculture and industry. In 1935 the Central Bank of China took the country off the silver standard. Bank notes became legal tender, which led to monetary disaster with the coming of the war with Japan.
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