1986 China S5Y - 1986 China 5 Yuan, Empress of China, KM-152, NGC MS69. This silver 1986 5 Yuan Superb Gem Uncirculated coin commemorates the Empress of China, a clipper ship. The coin has virtually perfect surfaces with no visible distractions of any kind. The strike is sharp in every detail. The coin is fully lustrous with silvery frost on its devices and just a hint of light toning on the obverse rim.
The obverse shows a lonely outpost upon a long desolate stretch of the Great Wall of China; the reverse shows a clipper ship. In 1866 the “Great Tea Race” took place. It was an unofficial competition to bring the season’s first crop of tea to London. Sixteen ships loaded with tea from China participated. The 15,000 mile trip took less than 90 days for the 4 clippers. The other 12 ships took over 120 days. The Baltimore Clipper, portrayed on the coin’s reverse, was first. It was built by America to outrun the British fleet during our fight for independence. The wining ships’ extra spread of sail and sleek hulls meant that they could "clip" the last inch of wind from the sails. They also proved invaluable to our early shipping and trading with the world. The winning ship was awarded an extra pound sterling for every ton of freight delivered, and the captain received a percentage of the ship’s earnings.
Top pop coin! Population of only 78 coins with 3 MS-70's. This has got to be one of the most undervalued Chinese silver coins. The coin is a tenth of an ounce less than a U.S. silver dollar. Compare with what a US silver dollar if available in MS-69 would be worth. Then consider this coin.