Currency Revalidation
Stickers (Shoshi)


Horizontal imperforate pairs of revalidation stickers (shoshi) for use on pre-WWII Japanese bank notes, 10y, 100y, 200y and 1000y - all specimens. These are the adhesive stamps referenced in the Pick catalogue under Japan Pick #79-82.

Available, click here


General Comments

Post War Currency Reform Measures in Japan. During February and March of 1946 existing Japanese currency had to be exchanged for new currency. Several new bank notes were issued by the Bank of Japan in 1946 to implement the currency exchange. When the quantities of the new currency was insufficient for demand, specially prepared shoshi (stickers) were applied to old notes in the upper right corner (usually over the denomination value in that corner) to revalidate them.

Description of Shoshi. The shoshi were issued in imperforate sheets of 50 (10 x 5). They were printed on watermarked paper and issued without gum. The watermark is similar to Scott Japan watermark 257 and JSDA watermark 3 (wide spaced curved wavy lines). The image areas are 13 x 22 mm. The colors are: 10y (blue), 100y (green), 200y (purple) and 1000y (vermilion). The 10y is on gray plain paper. The other denominations are on cream (off-white) laid paper.

Specimen copies of all four denominations were also prepared. The specimen shoshi have a hirigana "mihon" overprint printed in black that measures 10.5 x 3 mm.

On the 1000y and 200y the overprint is below the center point and on the 100y and 10y it is above the center point.

Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, General Issues, Volume Two, by Albert Pick.* The Pick catalogue lists the four shoshi applied to various notes under "Provisional Issue" March, 1946. The basic numbers are Pick 79 (10y), 80 (100y), 81 (200y) and 82 (1000y). Under each of these numbers there a sub-listing for the various older notes the shoshi were applied to. The 10y and 100y sub-listing have values listed. The 200y and 1000y do not have values listed.

World War II Remembered.** The shoshi are discussed in detail in the Schwan/Boling catalogue (pages 319-322). Schwan/Boling (SB) lists the notes with shoshi as 947 (10y), 948 (100y), 949 (200y) and 950 (1000y). The authors picture specimen copies of the four different shoshi used. They also value the notes with shoshi and mint specimen (new) shoshi. The authors note that the specimen shoshi are the "...only feasible way to collect the Y200 and Y1000 stamps." (SB at page 322)

The Catalog of Japanese Coins and Bank Notes.*** The catalogue numbers are:

  • #11-44 - 100y, Bank of Japan (1st Shotoku).
  • #11-45 - 20y, Bank of Japan (Fujiwara).
  • #11-46 - 10y, Bank of Japan (1st Wake).
  • #11-48 - 1000y, Bank of Japan (Yamato Takeru) - no catalogue value given - Rare.
  • #11-49 - 200y, Bank of Japan (Fujiwara) - no catalogue value given - Rare.
  • #11-51 - 10y, Bank of Japan (2nd Shotoku).
  • #11-52 - 10y, Bank of Japan (2nd Wake).
  • #11-55 - 10y, Bank of Japan (3rd Wake).
  • #11-58 - 100y, Bank of Japan (3rd Shotoku).
  • #11-59 - 10y, Bank of Japan (4th Wake).

The 10y and 100y notes with shoshi attached are priced in the catalogue. While the shoshi are noted, pictured and discussed for the 200y (11-49) and 1000y (11-48) notes, they are not priced.

Standard Catalogue of the Japanese Revenue Stamps edited by M. Shimomura.**** The Shimomura catalogue lists the four shoshi under the category of "Government Issue Stamps - New Note Gurantee" numbers 29 (10y), 30 (100y), 31 (200y) and 32 (1000y) at page 178. The shoshi are not given a value in the catalogue. It is interesting to note that Shimomura listing 34 in this same section is the 1972 "Guarancy Confirm" Iriomote stamp used on currency conversion documents in the Ryukyu Islands. Information on that item is here.

Post-War Currency Measures in the Ryukyu Islands. The Ryukyu Islands came under regulations promulgated by the US Military Government. Effective April 15, 1946 then circulating "Old" issue Japanese notes over 5 yen had to be revalidated with the same shoshi as used in Japan. The revalidated notes were valid for use until September 1, 1946 when Japanese notes and coins over 1 yen were required to be the "New" issue Bank of Japan notes. As of August 1, 1947, type B yen also became legal tender for the civilian population of the Ryukyu Islands. On July 21, 1948 the type B yen became the sole legal tender in the Ryukyu Islands. Minoru Sera, in his Ryukyus Handbook,***** published a chart (page 195) outlining these various currency stages.



* Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, General Issues, Volume Two, by Albert Pick, Seventh Edition, 1994, Krause Publications, Inc., WI, 4to, illustrated hard boards, 1280 pp.

**World War II Remembered, History in Your Hands - a numismatic study by C. Frederick Schwan and Joseph E. Boling, 1995, BNR Press, Ohio, 4to, illustrated hard covers, 864 pp.

*** The Catalog of Japanese Coins and Bank Notes, Japanese Numismatic Dealer's Association (JNDA), 2011, Tokyo, 12mo, illustrated stiff wraps, published annually.

**** Standard Catalogue of the Japanese Revenue Stamps edited by M. Shimomura, 2003, Tokyo, Fukuo Ltd., 8vo, illustrated stiff wraps, 292 pp.

***** Sera, Minoru, Ryukyus Handbook, Philatelic and Historic, Tokyo, printed by the Radiopress Tokyo, 1962, 8vo, gray cloth, 238 pp.


George C. Baxley
PO Box 807
Alamogordo, NM 88311

(575) 437-8707     (575) 434-1571 (Fax)


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