Trade Coins of the Orient

NGC Registry

Set Description
This set consists of various trade coins specifically minted to take advantage of trade in the Far East. Countries represented include Great Britain, Straits Settlement (a British Colony), Mexico (under Spanish Rule), Mexico (Republic), French Indo-China, Japan, The Philippines, Peru (under Spanish rule), and the United States. Set Goals
To showcase my collection while providing an interesting historical backdrop for each coin in the collection

View Coin British Empire GREAT BRITAIN 1816-1901 Asia 19th Century T$1 1898 NGC VF Details The birth of the British Trade Dollar was a direct result of the Opium Wars from 1839 to 1843 and 1856 to 1860 which began when China tried to stop Britain from selling opium to its citizens. As the loser, China had to open up a number of ports to British trade and residence, and cede Hong Kong to Britain. In the decades that followed, merchants and adventurers flocked to these areas, and international trade flourished. Foreign banks were established and large silver coins from all over the world began arriving to pay for tea, silk, and Chinese porcelain to be shipped abroad.
View Coin British Empire GREAT BRITAIN 1902-70 Asia 20th Century T$1 1929B NGC MS 62 These .900 fine silver trade dollars were circulated throughout China where they were readily accepted as a medium of exchange. The coin shows Britannia standing on a shore, holding a trident in one hand and a shield in the other, with a merchant ship under full sail in the background. On the reverse is an arabesque design with the Chinese symbol for longevity in the center, and the denomination in two languages — Chinese and Malay.
View Coin Imperial France FRENCH INDO-CHINA Southeast Asia 20th Century Silver 1P 1900A Chopmarked NGC FINE Details French Indochina is comprised of the former French colonial regions of Southeast Asia. French Indochina was made up of Cochin-China, Annam, Cambodia, Tonkin, Kwangchowan, and Laos. Today, this region is known as the nations of Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos
View Coin Imperial France FRENCH INDO-CHINA Asia 20th Century .900 Silver 1P 1900A NGC VF Details The French defeat at Dien Bien Phu in 1954 signalled the end of French influence in Indochina. The battle fought around Dien Bien Phu was the last major campaign by a European state in the region; by the end of the decade the United States was to become the prominent foreign power in Vietnam and the influence of France dwindled to barely nothing. The movie Indochine tells the story of a French Lady and her adopted Vietnamese daughter during a time when Vietnamese nationalism was on the rise. A very good movie.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 19th Century T$1 M9(1876) .900 Silver NGC VF Details The Japanese Trade Dollar was a dollar coin, issued from 1875 to 1877. It was minted of 27.22 grams of silver with a fineness of 900. 2,736,000 coins of this type were minted, the vast majority in 1876-77. When Japan introduced the gold standard in 1897, the silver 1 yen coins, including the trade dollars, were demonetized. The majority of the trade dollars were counter-stamped with the character “gin” (Japanese for “silver”). The Osaka mint placed the mark on the left side of the reverse, the Tokyo mint on the right. The coins were then released for use in Taiwan, Korea and Southern Manchuria.

This particular example is HEAVILY chopped and is even a little bent from the force of the blows required to place so many chops. The obverse is OK but the reverse is nearly obliterated. How NGC could determine a VF grade for this is a mystery to me.

View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 19th Century .900 Silver YEN M13(1880) GIN COUNTERSTAMP (1897) NGC XF Details This example of the Japanese Silver Yen weighed 26.96 grams with a silver fineness of .900. This particular example has both chop marks and a GIN (Silver) counterstamp applied at the Osaka Mint. The GIN counterstamp signified the coin was demonitized and would trade at Silver value only. Examples with a GIN stamp on the right were produced at the Tokyo Mint. The Osaka GIN stamp is the more common variety.

The GIN stamp can be seen as a circular stamp on the upper LH side of the reverse.

View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 19th Century .900 Silver YEN M24(1891) NGC AU Details This Silver Yen has several chopmarks but no GIN counterstamp. I would consider her lightly chopped. This implies that, given her high relative grade, that she might have ended up in the holdings of a bank or wealthy merchant for an extended time after a brief period of circulation. That’s the fun thing about chopmarked coins, you can always speculate as to their travels throughout the Orient.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 19th Century .900 Silver YEN M26(1893) NGC AU Details Japan had a booth at the Columbian Expostion held in Chicago Illinois from 1892-1893. This is where Frank Lloyd Wright saw Japanese art and architecture for the first time. Mr Wright lived in Japan from 1917-1922 and had a strong influence on Japanese architecture. I’m sure Japanese culture had an equal influence on Mr. Wright’s later works as well.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 19th Century YEN M28(1895) NGC AU Details This example of a Silver Yen is also very lightly chopped and also without GIN stamp. This example is my least chopped Yen. 1895 was also the year that Japan won a war against the Chinese and took over control of Taiwan and the Korean peninsula.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 20th Century .900 Silver YEN M36(1903) chopmarked NGC AU Details This is a lightly chopped Japanese Yen.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 20th Century YEN M38(1905) NGC AU Details This particular Japanese Yen is listed as repaired. I will have to loupe it when it arrives. Not sure where the repair occurred.
View Coin Meiji Empire JAPAN Asia 20th Centruy .900 Silver YEN M45(1912) NGC AU Details Another Japanese Yen with a single reverse side chopmark.
View Coin Taisho Empire JAPAN Asia 20th Century .900 Silver YEN T3(1914) Taisho NGC AU Details This particular Silver Yen was minted during the reign of the Taisho Emporer, 1912-1926. As with the Meiji Emporer, the name Taisho was not the family name and instead translated to Great Righteousness. Mental and physical disabilities kept him out of the spotlight, this Silver Yen represents the last year of Silver Dollar sized Yen..
View Coin Spanish Empire MEXICO – TO 1823 North America 18th Century 8R 1786MO FM Mexico City NGC VG Details Charles III ruled Spain from 1759 to 1788. His portrait show the prominent Bourbon nose that was typical of Bourbon family members who ruled throughout Southern Europe. It was under Charles’ reign that Spain began to be recognized a nation rather than a collection of kingdoms and territories. His efforts resulted in creation of a National Anthem, a flag, and a true capital city.

this particular coin is lightly chopped on the obverse with chopmarks typical of the Philippines and environs. The dies also appear to be slightly rotated.

View Coin Spanish empire MEXICO – TO 1823 North America 18th Century 8R 1795MO FM Mexico City NGC FINE Details The Oak Island (Nova Scotia) money pit was first discovered in 1795. Treasure hunters have been digging at the treasure site for over 200 years. So far, no treasure. But the lure of Silver and Gold and Pirate treasure will always attract the dreamers.
View Coin Mexican Republic MEXICO – 1823-1909 North America 19th Century 8R 1892MO AM Mexico City NGC FINE Details January 1st 1892 was the first day that immigrants from Europe entered the U.S. through Ellis Island. My Grandfather came through Ellis Island and his name Johansson became Johnson. Gustav later settled in north/central Penssylvania, met my Grandmother and the rest is history.
View Coin Spanish Empire PERU 1659-1826 South America 19th Century 8R 1808LIMA JP Lima CHARLES IIII NGC VF Details Charles the IV, aka Carlos Antonio Pascual Francisco Javier Juan Nepomuceno Jose Januario Serafin Diego, ruled Spain from 1788 until he abdicated his throne in 1808. This coin, minted in 1808 came from the Lima, Peru mint and has the Assayer mark of JP for Joint Assayers (rather than a specific assayer).

The example is lightly chopped with chopmarks typical of the Philippines and environs. Chopmarks typical of China are much larger and deeper.

View Coin British Empire STRAITS SETTLEMENTS Southeast Asia 20th Century .900 Silver S$1 1904B NGC VF Details The Straits Settlements is a former conglomeration of territories of the British East India Company in Southeast Asia. Obverse of this coin features Edward VII and the reverse is similar to that used on the Great Britain Trade Dollar. This particular Dollar was minted at the Bombay Mint. Weight: is 26.95 g and composition is .900 Silver. Mintage is 20,365,000.
View Coin United States UNITED STATES North America 19th Century .900 Silver T$1 1874 S PCGS Genuine This 1874-S Trade Dollar has numerous chopmarks on the obverse. the reverse is almost flattened by the force of the blows to the obverse field. The chops were probably applied while the coin rested on a hard surface. From the remaining detail, the Dollar would probably grade AU if not for the chops.
View Coin United States UNITED STATES North America 19th Century .900 Silver T$1 1877 S NGC XF 40 The United States Trade dollar is a silver dollar coin that was issued by the United States Mint and minted in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Carson City, and San Francisco from 1873 to 1885. Business strikes ended in 1878.

The coin was designed by William Barber, the mint’s chief engraver. More trade dollars were minted in San Francisco than Carson City and Philadelphia combined. San Francisco was closest both to the source of the silver as well as the ultimate destination of the coins, China. This example has several chopmarks. Chinese merchants would stamp the coins, thus guaranteeing weight and fineness and, also, advertising their businesses.

The United States Congress authorized the U.S. Mint to create a trade dollar to improve trade with the Orient, China in particular. Prior to that, the Mexican peso had been the primary silver coin used in trading with China. In fact, the eagle on the trade dollar’s reverse looks quite similar to the peso’s. The coin was minted at 420 grains (27 g) of silver with a fineness of .900 (90%), about 8 grains (520 mg) more than the domestic silver dollar of the time, and 4 more than the peso. However, the peso was .903 silver.

View Coin U.S. Territory UNITED STATES Asia 2oth Century .900 Silver PESO 1904 USA-PHIL NGC XF Details As a result of the U.S. victory in the Spanish-American war, the Philippines were sold to the U.S. in 1898. The Islands remained under U.S. control until gaining independence on July 4 1946. This particular piece was minted in San Francisco although the holder erroneously identifies it as a much rarer Philadelphia issue. I double-checked my invoice and I DID identify the coin as SF so I guess I better take a close look to verify the mintmark.




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