Hong Kong 1868 Silver Dollar KM#10 PCGS XF45
Obverse: Diademed bust of Victoria to left, legend around.
Reverse: Chinese characters within an ornamented design, date and legend around.
A solid example of this scarce type coin.
The British colonial masters of Hong Kong believed it was important that a local mint was established that could strike British dollars, the specifications of which would be equal to the weight and purity of the readily-accepted Mexican silver dollar.
Colonial regulations were passed that enabled the Mint's operations, and equipment valued at $71,500 was purchased in London. The Hong Kong Mint opened for business on May 7th 1866. In his book "A History of Currency in the British Colonies", Robert Chalmers advised that "...low exchanges and a mint charge of 2 per cent, resulted in its failure." Apparently, the coins were not accepted in trade on the Chinese mainland, unless they were discounted in value by 1%.
As a result, the colonial authorities decided to close the Hong Kong Mint after just 2 years of operation - the premises were vacated and the equipment was sold to the Japanese government.
Chalmers recounts that (ironically) Chinese traders accepted Hong Kong dollars at the same rate as Mexican dollars, and further that the smaller denominations struck by the Hong Kong Mint "were eagerly sought after at a substantial premium on their nominal value."
Chalmers states that the total number of each denomination struck were as follows:
|20 Cent Pieces||445,429|
|10 Cent Pieces||2,479,216|
|5 Cent Pieces||1,313,303|
This particular example has a deep and vivid patina across both sides. The lack of detail in the high points of the portrait is not entirely due to wear, some weakness can also be seen in the outer section of scrollwork.
It remains a strong example of one of Hong Kong's largest circulating coins.
Click the PCGS icon below to verify the certificate details for this coin directly on the PCGS website.
PCGS Certificate Number: 38172083
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