1945 to 1958
B Yen was a colloquial term used to refer to a form of military scrip used in post-war US occupied Okinawa, officially, it was called B type military scrip.
B-yen was first issued to GI's just prior to the invasion of Okinawa on 1 April 1945. The first and second photos show B-yen being issued just before the invasion. Once Okinawa had been secured B-yen was used by GIs to buy items at the field exchanges and unit clubs that were set up.
After the war ended and the US began its occupation of Okinawa the economy operated primarily on the barter system, the Okinawan's worked mostly for food and other goods and there was very little currency in circulation. The B-yen became the official currency of Okinawan civilians on 15 April 1946 and continued until 16 September 1958 when the US dollar became the official currency for military and civilians on Okinawa.
Photos 1 & 2 B-yen being issued out to Gis on 1 April 1945 for the invasion of Okinawa.
Photo 3 A B-yen that a GI took to a Navy Post Office on Okinawa and had canceled on 21 August 1945 before the war had ended, as a souvenir of his time on Okinawa.
Photo 4 A WAC Captain displaying 100 yen B-yen notes used on Okinawa for the occupation.
Photo 5 Japanese currency that could be used on Okinawa right after the war as long as they were validated with a special stamp by the banks.
Photo 6 A typical short snorter with tape residue, Gi's would tape the currency together and roll them up for easier storage. This B-yen is very interesting in that the GI was on Ie Shima on 17 Aug 1945 and on 30 August 1945 Gen. MacArthur arrived at Atsugi Airfield outside of Tokyo at 1400 hr. This GI was with the first troops which started to land at Atsugi at 0600 hrs before MacArthur arrived. He signed his B-yen at 0730.
There are several photos of Japanese currency that have notes on them that indicate the GI on Okinawa traded cigarettes for the Japanese currency to keep as souvenirs.
The other photos show various pieces of B-yen, because B-yen was used for so long on Okinawa at various times new B-yen had to be printed which is shown on the notes on some of the B-yen. The last item is the bank conversion paper that was required to change your US dollars to Japanese yen when the Ryukyu Islands reverted back to Japan in 1972.