PMG Choice F15
CHINA--PROVINCIAL BANKS. Kwangsi Bank. 1 Yuan, 1909. P-S2345. "Black Dragon" Note. PMG Choice Fine 15.
This is an exciting opportunity to acquire one of the most desirable and coveted pieces of World Paper. Among the most significant Chinese pieces in all of numismatics, this "Black Dragon" note is the sole graded on PMGs census and without question the finest example we have ever seen.
It has been privately held and is making its first major auction appearance since realizing $125,000 over a decade ago. The design features facing black dragons around a vignette of a Kwangsi Dollar. The reverse shows a Kwangsi Bank handstamp at left, and an inscription within the orange border that loosely translates to "no discount given" and "redeemable for silver at any branch." The incredible history of the note can be traced back to when the Qing Dynasty changed the structure of both Imperial Banks and made Kwangsi the first province to establish their own bank. From the start, among the Nan-Ning people the notes from this series were referred to commonly as the "Ooi-Long" notes.
The printing of the note took place in Japan, with the Japanese printing double the amount of 5 Dollar notes as 1 Dollar notes which is partially why the $1 example is so incredibly special. The notes were only in circulation for 2 years, and after being summoned back at that time, so few have survived. Those that have typically disappear into elite collections and in some cases have never resurfaced. This special note will likely fall into the hands of the most fortunate of collectors and will likely be a talked about treasure for years to come.