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aabum
Hi, I'm looking for information on currency that the Japanese had printed up for their anticipated invasion of Hawaii. My uncle's company secured a cave somewhere in the South Pacific during world war II and in the cave was millions of dollars of money that was printed up to look like US money except it had a picture of emperor Hirohito instead of a US president. also on the front of the bill to the left of the picture Hawaii was printed in dark blue outline letters. This is it to be confused with US money stamped with Hawaii and the back and hollow outline letters. I've been searching the internet and haven't found any information on this money, which I find a little bit odd because last time I did a search for this maybe 15 to 20 years ago information was readily available. I do know that the Treasury department declared this money as counterfeit so people aren't allowed to own the bills anymore but I expected to run into pictures of some of this currency. If anyone can point me in the direction of the internet source of information about this money I would appreciate it. Thank you
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lettow
There is no evidence that the Japanese printed money for an invasion of Hawaii.  
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aabum
I'm finding it surprising that people haven't heard of this money. I know it exists because I have seen it with my own eyes, having told my hands. My uncle was amongst the troops that took the cave where it was Japanese general had his stash of artifacts he had looted from China along with this money. My aunt headed to the conversation my uncle and I were having a saying something to the effect that some of those bills were ones my uncle had sent to her. Medical said he was sending examples of those currency to literally everybody who is ready to. He had a bunch of this money and it was worthless. He had these bills stored with a bunch of different Japanese invasion money along with other miscellaneous currencies.
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Dan Cong
It might be propaganda or a "fantasy" piece, not an official government of Japan banknote. It was common to copy banknotes as a basis for safe passage documents - it looks like a real bill, but promises the bearer if presented to a soldier on the other side, they would be given safe passage and not harmed. (As a POW). If you look at all the other japanese invasion money, and there are lots of varieties, none of it has a portrait of Hirohito.  Japan invaded China prior to WWII and all the notes followed a chinese style - putting the Japanese emperor on the notes might be adverse to their strategy. The internet has a remarkably long memory. If there was lots of discussion on these 20 years ago, I'm sure traces remain. Obviously, if you have any in your possession, or access to a scan, post them for review. 

http://www.psywarrior.com/WWIIAlliedBanknotes.html
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aabum
Well it wasn't a fantasy piece. Both sides of the bills look like they're US counterparts. I am familiar with other examples of Japanese invasion money. As you said the Chinese invasion money looked similar to Chinese currency. So you are supporting the fact that money printed for the invasion of Hawaii would look like American money. I don't know if any of this money is in the hands of any family members at this point, seeing that it was labeled as counterfeit by the US Treasury.
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Dan Cong
No, my point was no other Japanese Invasion notes, of which there are many, have Hirohito on them. If you consider Philippines, which was closest to the US in terms of territory (Hawaii was not a state), their invasion money is nothing like the previously circulating BEP printed currency circulating. I do not think it is ideologically possible for Japan to have issued a note with Hirohito on it. 

If they look like US Dollars, they are most likely propaganda, to be dropped en masse over enemy occupied territory. People see a Ten Dollar bill on the ground, they pick it up and read it. 

https://www.papermoneyforum.com/post/10-gold-certificate-1943-propaganda-note-german-russian-yugoslavian-8620276

Note owned by DoctorPaper as shown in above thread.

dsdagag.jpg 
Regarding being a counterfeit, I do not personally see the Secret Service being interested in a note that is significantly different and has no intention to deceive. A portrait of a Japanese emperor is a dead giveaway a note is not valid legal tender. If you consider the notes are supposed to be issued by the Japanese government, they would clearly state that, and not say "The United States of America" in big letters on them. If you think the Secret Service was involved in some way, they would normally have a record of their investigation. A freedom of information act request with the relevant details (your uncles' name, location, approximate date of incident) might provide what you are looking for. 

Obviously, this is my humble opinion. I do not doubt you saw the notes, but rather the back story might not be correct. 


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tigertrader

@aabum I have never heard of or seen a note like you are describing... It would be cool if you are able to find verifiable evidence of them...
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lettow
tigertrader wrote:

@aabum I have never heard of or seen a note like you are describing... It would be cool if you are able to find verifiable evidence of them...
 

Yes, please provide credible evidence of the existence of these notes.
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MEC2
Sounds like the Philippines $5 JIM note - the engraving is very BEP and the look is very familiar to the US Five. But it has a war memorial on it and not the emperor of Japan - did the emperor ever appear on *any* notes contemporaneous to his rule in the war period?
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aabum
I will see what I can find out from my cousin. Hopefully they have pictures of the currency. I understand the sceptics, if you haven't heard of something it can be difficult to believe it exists. Rest assured, I know this is real. Perhaps it's not well known because of the relatively small group of soldiers that discovered this stash. Add to that there weren't as many members of the press with 32 Division compared to the Marines.
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lettow
Well, I have been a military numismatic collector specializing in WWII for over 30 years.  I am personal friends with many others including some who have done extensive research on Japanese invasion money.  One of whom has viewed the original records in Japan.

None of them have ever heard of these notes either.  

And while we are at it, I have also extensively studied the history of the Red Arrow Division in both world wars.  It is one of my interests having been activated from the Wisconsin National Guard.

It fought in New Guinea and the Philippines.  These are unlikely places for the Japanese to have stored money to be used in an invasion of Hawaii whether in a cave or a warehouse.

The Red Arrow was involved in the occupation of Japan but they were on Kyushu nowhere near the printing operation or storage facilities of the Japanese Finance Ministry.
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YoungCollector
To the Japanese, Hirohito was not god-like, he was a god.  The most common images of Hirohito from WW2 were demeaning caricatures made up by the U.S.  I find it hard to imagine the Japanese would have ever put his image on a grubby piece of money that an ordinary man could touch.   To understand what I am getting at, imagine trying to put Jesus on a $5 bill.  Or, imagine what happens to a Danish cartoonist for drawing a picture of Mohammed.   
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