Author Topic: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set  (Read 7672 times)

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Offline KONDi

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Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« on: October 22, 2012, 03:56:45 AM »
Dear coin collectors and coin dealers,

These are probably the most interesting bus tokens in the world for me.

"C.G.O.Co.Ltd", the China General Omnibus Co.Ltd was a British-owned bus company and was established in Shanghai in 1922. However some sources of information says, that the company was established in 1924. The company was registered in Hong Kong, but all of its business is in Shanghai. J. A. Fredericks was a was a British man who founded "C.G.O.Co.Ltd". The company's first line opened to public in October of 1924.

The first line was from Bund to Jing'an Temple. The company introduced the second line in 1934 from Jing'an Temple to Hongkou Park.

China General Omnibus Co.Ltd company issued 3 sets of bus token:
1st set: 1922 1 cent, 2 cents and 3 cents.
1 cent and 2 cents are made of brass and 3 cents is made of copper-nickel.

2nd set: 1926 2 1/2 cent and 5 cents, where 2 1/2 cent is made of brass and 5 cents is made of copper-nickel alloy.

3rd set: 1939 1 cent, 3 cents and 5 cents
All bus tokens from 3rd set were made probably in Shanghai and those from 1st and 2nd set were made probably in US.
Those all 3 bus tokens from 3rd set are made of aluminium.
1 cent with JDS initials on reverse has 21mm in diameter and 2 mm in thickness.
Please notice that the reverse side of this token has the initials "JDS" written in cursive script. These initials stand for J.D. Shatler who was the General Manager of the company.
3 cents with number 3 on reverse has 24mm in diameter and 2,5mm in thickness
and finally 5 cents with number 5 on reverse has 27mm in diameter and 3mm thickness.
...
I would like to focus here on 1st set: 1922 or like some collectors think the set from 1924. The first set is extremely rare, especially 1 cent with chinese character one cut out and 3 cents with chinese character three cut out. The 2 cents with chinese character two cut out is the one which usually shows up for sell, but is also extremely rare. You can buy them right now only on auction houses.

On the obverse and reverse of each of those bus tokens there is hidding tiny letter M...For example in a word "GOOD", the last letter "D" has tiny letter "M" inside. On the reverse the word LTD, also last letter "D" has tiny letter "M" inside". The tiny letter can be find exactly in the same place on the obverse and the reverse of every of those 1-2-3 cents tokens.
No one knows what the hidden letters mean on the Shanghai bus tokens. The initials are more likely to be those of the company which manufactured the token or the man who engraved the dies. Similar bus tokens, with repeating lines in the background, were used by many bus companies throughout the USA in the 1920's. I suspect this bus token was made in the United States. The initials were only discovered a few years ago--and by a non collector.

If some of you guys know what those tiny "M" letter could mean please share your thoughts here. Thanks in advance!

KONDi
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Shanghai/China
2012.10.22
15:50
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2012, 09:57:56 AM »
They say there is nothing impossible for a collector who is looking for some coin. He/she will even dig it out even from a tomb...I didn't have to move that far, but it cost me a lot of money to finally complete all set of tokens from first issue (1922/24). Finally ladies and gentlemen I got the last token for this set---my 3 cents with chinese character three cut out. It is made of copper-nickel. Also, please read this post from the beginning and pay attention on a location of tiny "M" letters on obverse and reverse of this token.
KONDi
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Offline dragondollar

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2012, 10:23:26 AM »
If you're willing to disclose the price at which you bought the token, I'd be grateful to know its market value!

Offline snowball

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2012, 10:25:54 AM »
This has been a very educational post for me!  As a Shanghainese, I learn something new about the old Shanghai.  Thanks!

+1

Wonderful collection!


best,

snowball
« Last Edit: December 15, 2012, 10:23:22 PM by snowball »
Happy Collecting!  快乐收藏!

Colin
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China Mint | Online Store

Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2012, 09:56:29 AM »
Dear snowball,

Thank you very much for your words of recognition :001_smile:

Well, that's what this forum is for to learn something from each other and post some interesting information.

I think that there should be more books and illustrated catalogs in English about old Shanghai tokens and also old Chinese tokens.

No one wouldn't have to dig in hundreds of web sites, searching for a small piece of information to know something about the coin or token which he/she has.

Once again thanks,

KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2013, 03:30:17 AM »
I would like to dedicate this post to my friend Amber:)
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2013, 09:55:23 PM »
Dear all,

I also would like to share with you with those photos from a book about old Shanghai tokens from 1991.
I think this book is very interesting :001_smile:
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2013, 07:54:41 AM »
In this book:
Hu & Sun - Shanghai Tokens; Extensive text (Chinese), plus 170 tokens illustrated, rarity guide.
page nr 3-4-5 and 108-109 you can find information about this token.

Ma Chuande book: "Coinage in Shanghai Bound" 1999 you can find also some informaton about this token on page nr: 429-431 (photo nr: P1020855)
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2013, 03:09:20 AM »
Dear all,

One of the last literature where I was able to find is: Ma Chuande book: "Currencies in Old Shanghai" 1998.
p.165 - 184 and futher some page/pages...
We can find here some English and Chinese reference + colored photos of those tokens.

To summarize: If you want to start collect Old Shanghai tokens you should read all those 4 books + own at least those first 2 from this list:

1) Hu & Sun - "Shanghai Tokens" 1991 (good reference, weak photos of tokens)

2) "The Chips and Coupons in Old Shanghai" 2005 (less reference, much much more photos of tokens with parameters of each token)

3) Ma Chuande book: "Coinage in Shanghai Bound" 1999 (some reference and weak photos of tokens)

4) Ma Chuande book: "Currencies in Old Shanghai" 1998 (reference (also in English) and not bad real photos of some tokens)

Good luck and ENJOY!:)

 N25
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2013, 10:48:50 AM »
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2013, 10:14:18 AM »
Dear all,

I have some small update of my post about China General Omnibus Co Ltd.

First of all there is an English book written by T.Woodward - "The coins of Shanghai", where the author describe some history of these tokens. It answered my question that first bus tokens for this company were issued in October 1924 so whole 1st set with chinese characters "one", "two" and "three" cut out is from 1924. On p.15 Woodward even didn't mention 1 cent token, which means, a very few 1 cent tokens with chinese character "one" cut out got into circulation. It seems that only in the book "The chips and coupons in old Shanghai 2005" is showed 1 cent, except the one which I own. On the same page also it is showed that if you want to buy such of 5 cents (2nd issue---1926) token you need to pay 10 cash copper coin---quite cheap was to take that bus N16. However I think Woodward made mistake, he showed on p.15 that 5 cents token from 1926 and 3 cents token from 1924 were made of aluminium. They where not, they where made of copper-nickel N50.
KONDi
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2013, 10:28:44 AM »
Here is some beautiful UNC piece which I found on this page:

http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4d9b55f30100boy3.html

The author of this article is wrong, because he thinks that all 3 pieces which he showed belong to 1 set. However this (which picture I would like to present you belongs to 1st issue from 1924 and the other 2 pieces to 2nd issue 1926.
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2013, 11:46:53 AM »
Dear all,

Today I would like to share with you some interesting information which I found about the China General Omnibus Co.Ltd here:

http://www.awu168.com/%E8%80%81%E4%B8%8A%E6%B5%B7%E8%8B%B1%E5%9C%8B%E5%85%AC%E8%BB%8A%E4%BB%A3%E7%94%A8%E5%B9%A3%E4%B8%89%E6%9E%9A/
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2013, 11:46:49 AM »
Dear all fans of old Shanghai tokens,

Recently I bought another 3 cents old Shanghai bus token from 1924 with chinese character 3 cut out in UNC condition. My new 3 cents will upgrade N30 the old one which is in XF condition :001_tongue:.
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Offline KONDi

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Re: Old Shanghai bus tokens 1922/24 from 1st set
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2013, 09:58:22 AM »
Dear Shanghai token collectors :001_rolleyes:,

I have very interested information about the China General Omnibus Company:

"On the buses

The first man to open a bus company in Shanghai was the Chinese businessman Dong Xingsheng. In August 1922, his company, the Chinese Motor Bus, opened the first bus service from Jing'an Temple to Zhaofeng Park (now Zhongshan Park). It began with just one bus but soon added another. The buses came from Germany and could carry 30 passengers. The company itself closed after two years - most of the early bus companies only lasted three or four years.

There was plenty of competition. The British-owned China General Omnibus started up in October 1924 with 20 secondhand buses from the UK and a route from Jing'an Temple to the Bund, extending this to the Waibaidu Bridge a month later.

By the end of 1929, the company owned 96 buses running over 11 routes. In April 1934, the company introduced the London trademark double-decker buses that ran between Zhaofeng Park and Hongkou Park. In 1941, the company was running 195 buses including 57 double-deckers. The Japanese took over the business and ran bus services in Yangpu and Hongkou districts, but by 1940, because of fuel shortages, only the Hongkou Park-Wujiaochang route remained.

The Shanghai Public Utilities Bureau set up a bus company committee in October, 1945 and then a tram company committee in November only to merge them into a public transportation committee in 1946. The city's buses resumed operation then, opening 10 routes. In July 1958, the Shanghai Public Transportation Company was established and in November that year the company launched the first all-night bus service in the city."


source: http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/795970.shtml
KONDi
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