Obverse. Photo © NumisCorner.com
  • 1 Dollar 1958, KM# 55, Canada, Elizabeth II, 100th Anniversary of British Columbia
  • 1 Dollar 1958, KM# 55, Canada, Elizabeth II, 100th Anniversary of British Columbia

This 1-dollar silver coin is also called the Death dollar. At the bottom of the totem pole on the reverse, Stephan Trenka, designer for this commemorative coin, added a face that is the symbol of death in the First Nations culture.

British Columbia (BC) is the westernmost province in Canada, located between the Pacific Ocean and the Rocky Mountains. The province's name was chosen by Queen Victoria, when the Colony of British Columbia (1858–1866), i.e., "the Mainland", became a British colony in 1858. The capital of British Columbia is Victoria, named for Queen Victoria, who ruled during the creation of the original colonies. The largest city is Vancouver.

The first British settlement in the area was Fort Victoria, established in 1843, which gave rise to the City of Victoria, at first the capital of the separate Colony of Vancouver Island. Subsequently, on the mainland, the Colony of British Columbia (1858–1866) was founded by Richard Clement Moody and the Royal Engineers, Columbia Detachment, in response to the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush. In 1866, Vancouver Island became part of the colony of British Columbia, and Victoria became the united colony's capital. In 1871, British Columbia became the sixth province of Canada.


First portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth II (laureate bust) facing right, wearing a wreath. It was introduced in 1953, one year after the Queen acceded to the throne. It captures the grace and youth of the 26-year-old new Queen. Her hair is restrained by a laureate crown which is tied with ribbons at the back of her head. The Queen's shoulders are bare and the truncation follows the curve of the coin. The engravers initials M.G. are incuse, generally faint, and are located on the raised edge found at the base of the bust.

ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA means Elizabeth II, by the grace of God, Queen

Engraver: Mary Gillick



Depicts a totem pole before the Rocky Mountains, surrounded with the inscription "BRITISH COLUMBIA", the dates "1858" and "1958", the facial value and the inscription "CANADA".

Totem poles are monumental carvings, a type of Northwest Coast art, consisting of poles, posts or pillars, carved with symbols or figures. They are usually made from large trees, mostly western red cedar, by First Nations and indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest coast including northern Northwest Coast Haida, Tlingit, and Tsimshian communities in Southeast Alaska and British Columbia, Kwakwaka'wakw and Nuu-chah-nulth communities in southern British Columbia, and the Coast Salish communities in Washington and British Columbia.

Engraver: Stephen Trenka



1 Dollar

1st portrait, Death dollar

100th Anniversary of British Columbia

KM# 55 Schön# 56
Type Commemorative Issue (Circulating)
Material Silver
Fineness 0.800
Weight 23.3276 g
Diameter 36.06 mm
Thickness 2.84 mm
Shape round
Alignment Medal
Royal Canadian Mint (RCM)

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