About that Chiang Kai-shek medal offered by Spink...
Dan Friedus writes:
I don't know what's really going on, but it will be interesting to follow news about the Chian Kai-shek medal you mentioned in last week's E-Sylum. I'm curious why it was included in the middle of a stamp auction instead of being in an auction of medals and decorations.
At least 2 Taiwanese news sources claim it must be fake since his was buried with him.
Medal to be auctioned in Hong Kong still in Taiwan: military
MND rejects authenticity of medal to be auctioned by firm
To further complicate the issue, someone posted photos on the web last year from a trip to Taipei and saw an example in a museum described as being the one given to Chian Kai-shek but it is clearly not the one being sold:
Some Of Mr. Chiang Kai-shek Medals
Another specimen, issued to Hu Lian, was in the news because it was stolen and recovered earlier this year:
The prestigious Order of Blue Sky and White Sun medal that was awarded to the Chinese war hero Hu Lian was allegedly stolen by a mainland tourist from Heilongjiang Province, according to local media on Tuesday in Taiwan.
Surveillance footage showed a man dressed like a Chinese tourist opening the medal's display case and taking it from a Kinmen museum on May 4.
Kinmen police have identified the suspect as a 76-year-old man, with the surname Qiao, from Heilongjiang Province of mainland China. They said the man boarded a boat that took him back to Xiaomen shortly after the alleged act took place. It was the first time that the Mr. Qiao came to Kinmen and Taiwan.
Mainlander suspected of stealing an Order of Blue Sky and White Sun in Kinmen
The Medal of Blue Sky and White Sun with Grand Cordon
Here's a site with more info on this order.
If you don't read Chinese
translate.google.com does a pretty good job.:
This was supposedly Chiang Kai-shek's "favorite" decoration and there are a number of photos of him wearing only this one:
including an image in which the order is flipped around so the inscription on the back is visible (possibly even legible on the original photo):
How many original medals can there be? This reminded me of the quote from Mark Twain:
“In a museum in Havana, there are two skulls of Christopher Columbus, one when he was a boy and one when he was a man”
Here's an Associated Press article about the medal.
A medal awarded to late Taiwanese leader Chiang Kai-shek is going up for auction in Hong Kong, even though Taiwan's defense ministry says it's not the original.
The Order of Blue Sky and White Sun medal is going on the block Friday. It's expected to fetch 3-5 million Hong Kong dollars ($387,000-$645,000).
Auction house Spink says Chiang was awarded the medal in 1930 by his Nationalist government, which ruled much of China while fighting a civil war with the Communists. In 1949, the defeated Nationalists fled to Taiwan and set up a rival regime.
Taiwan's defense ministry said last week, after Spink announced plans for the auction, that Chiang was laid to rest in a mausoleum with the medal when he died in 1975.
But at a press preview on Tuesday for the sale, collector and scholar Chuk Hong-ming said Chiang was buried with a duplicate medal.
"Before 1995, it was the usual practice to give a new set of the medals to a general who passed away for burial," he said. The auction house says it's the first time the medal has ever gone up for auction.
To read the complete article, see:
Taiwan government says late leader Chiang Kai-shek medal up for auction not original
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
CHIANG KAI-SHEK'S ORDER OF BLUE SKY AND WHITE SUN MEDAL
Wayne Homren, Editor
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