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Chinatown Quarter

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Chinatown Quarter, or Half or Dollar, is a coin trick invented by Ken Allen, and first advertised for sale in 1953. The magician causes an American quarter to transform into an antique brass Chinese coin, that has a hole right through its center! "Chinatown Quarter" consisted of Allen's routine, as well as a gimmicked coin. But mostly, the name is now associated with the coin itself. "Chinatown Half-Dollar" came out sometime in the late fifties, and the silver-dollar size followed shortly thereafter. All three have since been used by magicians in many other tricks.


  • Chinatown Quarter (Ken Allen): Marketed item, 1953.
  • Chinatown Dollar Routine (Stewart Judah): J. B. Bobo, The New Modern Coin Magic (1966, pp. 459-463).
  • Made in Japan (Ron Bauer): J. B. Bobo, The New Modern Coin Magic (1966, pp. 485-486).
  • Chinatown Penetration Plus (Ron Allesi): Genii, Vol. 45 No. 11 (November 1981, pp. 728-729).
  • Revaluation (A Reminiscense) (Alex Elmsley): Stephen Minch, Collected Works of Alex Elmsley, Vol. 2 (1994, pp. 264-267).
  • Chinese Quarter Routine...and More: Vanni Bossi, Las Vegas Lecture (2005, pp. 9-14).