100 Hwan


Issuer South Korea
Period Republic (1948-date)
Type Standard banknote
Year 1962
Value 100 Hwan (100)
Currency Hwan (1953-1962)
Composition Paper
Size 165 × 66 mm
Shape Rectangular
Demonetized 06-10-1962
Number N# 210717
Numista (https://numista.com)
References P# 26
Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2019. Standard Catalog of World Paper Money. Modern issues 1961-present (25th edition). Krause Publications, Iola, Wisconsin, USA.
And 2 more volumes.


Mother and her child holding a savings account booklet

Script: Hangul

백 환


Translation: Korean banknote, One Hundred Hwan, The Bank of Korea


Independence Gate in Seoul, built in 1897

Script: Latin


100 HWAN


The very last Hwan-denominated note sets the record for having the shortest time in circulation of any South Korean banknote.  This 100 Hwan note (P 26) was released on May 16, 1962 (on the first anniversary of the military takeover) and was withdrawn and demonetized after the announcement of the currency reform on June 10, 1962; giving it a mere 26 days in circulation as legal tender.   The apparent waste in issuing this note might be evidence of the level of secrecy surrounding the currency reform right up to the date of its announcement —or was issuing this note just a ruse?  In Korea, this 100 Hwan note is known as the “Mother and Son” ( 모자상 ) design, differentiating it as the only 100 Hwan banknote that did not feature Syngman Rhee’s image.  This note’s brief circulation makes it one of the more sought-after banknotes for Korean banknote collectors.  Notes with the printing number “3” are especially valued: The DaeGwang-sa Catalogue (2014) values it at 15 million KRW ($15,000 USD) in Uncirculated condition.

In 2002, a Seoul daily newspaper tracked down the actual “Mother and Son” who modeled for the image on this note (right).   In 1962, Kwon Ki-soon was a 24 year-old employee at the Korean Mint working on the design team alongside the Mint’s lead currency designer, Kang Bak.  Mr. Kang asked Ms. Kwon to model for photos with her 2 year-old son, Yoon Jae-soon, at Doksu Palace in central Seoul, and one of the resulting images was used for the design of this banknote.  The mother on the note is holding a savings-account booklet, an image meant to encourage people to save money.

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Numista Rarity index: 100 Search tips
This index is based on the data of Numista members collections. It ranges from 0 to 100, 0 meaning a very common coin or banknote and 100 meaning a rare coin or banknote among Numista members.

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