German colony of Kiaochou in China

21 Feb 2018  Wed

Collecting banknotes is such a beautiful way to know the globe that we live on! It happens so many times that we come across attractive banknotes from a country or a region we have never heard of. These are moments which capture our curiosity and thirst for knowledge. Today let’s get to know such a yet undiscovered and unknown region of Kiaochou in China.

Jiaozhou or Kiaochou is an island in the bay area near Qingdao, China. This region was a German colony from 1898 until 1914. The area was inhabited by indigenous Chinese tribes of Dongyi and Laizhou. Following the German acquisition of Kiaochou in 1898, the area was placed under the jurisdiction of the Imperial Naval Office and a trading and naval port established at Tsingtao. Tsingtao, the capital city built up the German government, was a model city with flour, paper and cotton milling industries and for fishing and shipyards.

To promote trade interests in this newly acquired territory, several of the major German banks joined together to form a joint venture to serve their Chinese interests and thus the Deutsch-Asiatische Bank was established.

The banknote featured here is Deutsch-Asiatische Bank’s 1 Tael banknote issued at Peking Branch in 1907. The obverse of the note depicts the crowned bust of Germania holding a lance and shield emblazoned with the German eagle. In the upper left corner features an eagle of the Reich with the letters D.A.B. upon its breast. The lower left-hand corner contains a frontal view of the Imperial Dragon. At the bottom centre, appears the name of the Branch of Issue in a large rectangle. The text on the front of the notes is in both German and Chinese.

The reverse of the note portrays two Germanias facing each other. The text on the back of the notes is in both English and Chinese “THE DEUTSCH-ASIATISCHE BANK promises to pay the bearer ONE TAEL PEKING - CURRENCY at its office in Peking“.

Each region has a story to tell and while collecting stamps and banknotes you not only just possess a piece of historical evidence but also get to travel to these far off places while sitting at your home!
So do you possess a banknote of such an unknown country or region?

Image Courtesy: World Banknotes & Coins

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