Two Sides: Yen Yuan Hsien [Yen Yuan County]
Middle: Bao Jen [Name of Silver Shop] Dimension: 47 (L) x 58 (W) x 30 (H)mm Weight: 340g (10 taels)
The shown Drum Sycee was made in a famous salt production area named
Yen Yuan located in the south-west of Szechuan Province. The
words of Yen Yuan, in Mandarin also mean The Origin of Salt,
the being of this place is exactly the same as the name means to be.
During the reign of the Republic of China (1912-1948), the
administrative regions of the country was restored. A new province Si
Kang covering certain territories of western Szechuan, northern
Yunnan, and eastern Tibet was established by the government. Yen
Yuan was part of the new province, until the government was expelled from the mainland China by
the Communists in 1949, it was then recovered as Szechuanís territory.
The city has been rich in its quality salt made from the salt wells
within the region, and because of its location being adjacent to
Yunnan and Tibet, Yen Yuan was not only providing its salt to the Szechuan natives, but
also became an important supplier of salt for Yunnan and Tibet. Silver sycee
had been the major payment called upon by Yen Yuanís salt business, the
shown Drum Sycee could be made for such purpose, which was cast after
businessmen having received silver payment from buyers. Besides, we may know
from the sycee that Yen Yuan County were using the typical 10-tael Drum
sycee as other areas in Szechuan did.