Obverse: The 20th Year of Zhong Hua Ming Kuo
(1931) Reverse: Emblem of the Republican Government
Minted in Kweichow Province
Antimony Coin as 10 cash Krause & Mishler Standard Catalog: Y#429 Dimension: 20mm Weight: 5g
This unique Antimony coin was made in Kueiyang, the capital city of
Keichow Province, before 1933. Beside this trial China has and had never
produced coins in Antimony and perhaps it would be the mere instance in
Due to Kueichow was a rural and underdeveloped area in China, its
hand-craft based industries were not up to a level which being capable of
casting copper coins for its own circulation. Therefore, since long time
ago, Kueichow had to rely on importing copper coins from other provinces,
such as Szechuan, Hunan, to solve the problem. However, under such a
circumstance, supplies of coins were always controlled by merchants and
other provinces, Kueichow had been on and on suffered by coin shortage or
its fluctuation, which paved way to the birth of Antimony coins, the coins
made by their own.
The Antimony coin was made by an arsenal nearby Kueiyang City, and
according to the recent studies, such coins were actually issued in 1933,
not in 1931 as inscribed. The arsenal took about extra 2-3 years to finish
casting half a million pieces, which was resulted from their technical
incapacity, yet not including in their original schedules.
Such antimony coin, is an alloy of Antimony and Lead, two minerals
that could be found with quantity in Kueichow.
When such coins being initially issued in 1933 at Kueiyang City, the
local government announced in the meantime that the exchange rate between
silver dollar and Antimony coin must be 1:400, which means one Antimony coin
was deemed as 0.25 cent only, not as 1 cent (10 cash) as its facial value
(in the case of the exchange rate between silver coin and cash coin was
fixed to 1:1000). Moreover, if any local bank who wishes to exchange for an
amount no less than 100 silver dollars in one deal, would be privileged to a
more favorable rate of 1:410. Those may all be considered as incentives with
which the government tried to promote such Antimony coins.
Even though the local government had tried so hard to promote,
however, people there did not seem to appreciate at all, because they were
not used to it, for it was too odd. Totally unlike the copper coins they
being familiar with and it were too soft, would be quickly worn out during
No report indicates that whether the half of million of Antimony had
been eventually sold out by then, but it's very obviously that there was no
2nd trial of casting Antimony coin afterward by any government.
The faith of such Antimony coin is an irony. This extremely cheap and
not being welcomed coin in 1933, sixty-four years later, is now pricing by
the current coin dealers tens of thousand times than its original worth.