Very Rare Chang Tso Lin Facing Portrait Dollar

The upcoming Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio August Hong Kong Showcase auction is very near to completion, and soon you will be able to browse the catalog online or in print. In anticipation of this sale, we have a preview of an exceptional and very rare coin, a facing portrait pattern Dollar of Chang Tso Lin, the “Mukden Tiger” and warlord of Manchuria. Born into poverty, a young man he turned to banditry and earned a reputation similar to Robin Hood amongst the local populace. Chang would incorporate his bandit gang into the National army, forming his own militia loyal to him. With an army behind him Chang took advantage of the Central Government’s weakness during the aptly named “Warlord Era of China.” Chang made Manchuria his own fiefdom, and he was the supreme ruler. After consolidating his power in the area he indulged with a huge chateau-style mansion, five wives and a massive personal fortune. With the military strength of Manchuria behind him, he was successful in his invasion of Peking (modern-day Beijing) and became the de facto leader of the internationally recognized government of China in 1926. He declared himself the Generalissimo of the Military, and this became the apex of his career. In commemoration of this victory, he would have coins struck, including this extremely rare pattern Dollar.

The obverse features a facing bust of Governor Chang Tso Lin in civilian dress, with the legend: "Memorial coin of the Commander-in-Chief" in Chinese characters above. The reverse design features two crossed flags, the “Five-Colored Flag” of the Republic of China and the “Iron Blood” 18-star flag of the Wuchang Uprising. The Chinese legend: “17th year of the Republic of China” appears above the flags, and in English: “ONE DOLLAR” is shown below. A stellar example, this piece is one of just five at this grade level with only one certified finer. It’s easy to see why it earned this excellent specimen grade, as it possesses a strong strike with outstanding detail. Attractive toning graces this piece, increasing its eye appeal. This rarely seen issue is sure to demand considerable attention and is certainly worthy of a premium bid.

Look for this and other Asian and world numismatic rarities in our upcoming August Hong Kong Showcase Auction. Preview this impressive lot along with the rest of our auction this August at the Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio office located in Irvine, California and in our Hong Kong office. For details please refer to the Events Calendar link at To schedule an appointment, please call 800.458.4646. While our Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio August Hong Kong Showcase Auction is closed for further consignments, we are currently taking consignments of Asian, world and ancient coins for our December Hong Kong Showcase Auction of Asian coins and currency, November Baltimore and New York International auctions. If you are interested in consigning your coins and paper currency (whether a whole collection or a single rarity) be sure to contact one of our consignment directors.

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West Coast Office • (800) 458-4646

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