Shanghai, China) The Shanghai Mint has struck a limited edition series of “Shanghai Memory” silver and gold medals to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the Designated Area For Stateless Refugees, commonly known as “the Shanghai Ghetto” or “Hongkew Ghetto.” That area in Shanghai became a temporary home for an estimated 20,000 Jewish refugees who safely escaped from the Nazi onslaught during the World War II Holocaust.
“This is the first time any China mint has ever produced numismatic items with a theme related to Jewish history,” said Danny Spungen, President of Why Not Collectibles of Lincolnshire, Illinois.
“The design of the medals is filled with symbolism related to the humanitarian efforts by China to offer safe refuge for those who fled Europe starting in the 1930s,” explained Spungen. He has been involved with the planning of the project for the past three years after an initial meeting with Shanghai Mint officials in December 2010.
The medals are composed of 99.9 percent pure gold or silver and have been struck in sizes of one-ounce silver, one-ounce gold and five-ounces gold.
Each medal is individually etched with its limited edition number. The mintages are only 36 for the five-ounces gold, 570 for the one-ounce gold and 5,773 for the one-ounce silver. In the Jewish calendar, 5773 is the current year.
Each medal also is accompanied by a Shanghai Mint certificate of authenticity written in both Chinese and English.