The first modern, machine-struck silver coinage in China began in Guangdong in 1889. The new currency gaining in popularity, other provinces started to issue silver dollar coins. The Jiang Nan province (江南) was an early adopter and issued its first complete set of silver coins in 1897. This early set was minted in low quantities, with an original design which was quickly replaced by a more common one during the next two years. That makes the 1897 Kiangnan silver dollar a valued addition to a chinese dragon dollars collection. Sadly, the popularity of this coin amongst collectors made it a choice target for counterfeiters.

I recently saw a new kind of fake Lao Kiangnan coin floating around on online auction websites. It can easily be spotted by the little bumps around the rosette at the left of the dragon, and inside its coiled tail, as seen below.

Fake Lao Kiangnan

Fake Lao Kiangnan

Aside of the bumps, the coin is well struck and much more convincing than the usual crude forgeries found on these kind of websites. For comparison, here is what a real Lao Kiangnan looks like:

Genuine Lao Kiangnan

Genuine Lao Kiangnan

Any bumps on a machine struck coin should immediately raise suspicion; they are usually artifacts appearing during the process of casting. In this case, the coin is visibly struck, but most likely using a cast die – the bumps are the imprint of tiny bubbles trapped between the mold and the metal during the casting.

5 Responses to “Forgeries: 1897 Kiang Nan province Dollar”

  1. April says:

    If I send you some pix, can you see if you can tell if my coin is fake or real?

  2. Mr.Apartix says:

    I have coins kiang lao nan, and I want to sell,, … if there is interest,.

  3. Dragon Dollar says:

    Hi Mr Apartix, there is lot of fake Kiangnan coins on the market, so it may be wise to get your coin certified before trying to sell it. I can identify your coin and give you my opinion if you send me pictures of this coin through the appraisal form here:

  4. ar says:

    How much value of this coin
    King nan provine 7 mare and 2 candareens but i also have 1 coins like this

  5. Aklilu says:

    It is really interesting I have one coin that I would like to know more about it

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