Paper Money of Chihuahua

.. by Simon Prendergast

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Home The History El Banco Minero The second Banco Minero Chihuahuense

The second Banco Minero Chihuahuense

50c Banco Minero Chihuahuense

This second bank was set up by a group of financiers led by Luis Terrazas and his son-in-law, Enrique C. Creel, and including Pedro Zuloaga and Inocente Ochoa. On 31 July 1882 Ochoa was authorised to set up the bank in his home town of Ciudad Juárez, and to issue up to 300,000 pesos in notes of twenty-five centavos, fifty centavos and one peso, payable in legal tender or in silver pesos at an 8% discount (a la vista en moneda corriente a la par ó en pesos fuertes de plata con el 8 por ciento de cambio á elección del Banco). The notes had to be signed or stamped by the Administrador General de Rentas, the bank had to give adequate guarantees and open an annual line of credit for the government, and the state had the right to appoint an interventorPeriódico Oficial, 5 August 1882, though the last two conditions were removed on 5 December 1882Periódico Oficial, [                ].

It is difficult to determine the exact relationship between the first and second bank. The second group of financial backers presumably took over whatever assets the first bank had, but perhaps because of the political differences between the two groups, history was rewritten and the first few years of the bank tended to be forgottenThus, different sources say that in 1881, at the age of 27, Creel took over the branch of the Banco Minero Chihuahuense (Heliodoro Dueñes, Los Bancos y la Revolución, Mexico, 1945) or that Creel founded the bank in 1883 (Chihuahua Enterprise, 30 October 1897). El Norte, 5 July 1900, confirmed that the bank was opened on 31 July 1882.

Similarly there is confusion over the original shareholders. Certainly Ochoa was the person who actually gained the concession, but other sources state that he was backed by Luis Terrazas, Carlos Zuloaga, and Miguel Salas; that there were four founding shareholders with equal shareholdings; that there were five shareholders - Luis Terrazas, Enrique Creel, Pedro Zuloaga, Inocente Ochoa and Mariano SamaniegoMexican Financier, 18 January 1896; and that Terrazas and Creel joined Pedro Zuloaga as shareholders (in the old Banco Minero Chihuahuense) in 1884[                            ] In August 1883 the bank was referred to as the bank of Creel and Co (El Paso Herald, 5 August 1883). The general gist, however, is clear. The Guerristas lost out to the Terrazas faction, with Luis Terrazas’ closest associates ending up holding the bank’s shares.

On 5 July 1883 the earlier concession was altered so that, of the 300,000 pesos already authorised 150,000 could be issued in one peso notes payable in hard cash (pagaderos a la vista y á la par por pesos fuertes) and therefore carrying the description ‘VALE POR PESOS FUERTES A LA PAR’. AlmadaFrancisco Almada, Resumen de la Historia del Estado de Chihuahua, Mexico, 1955 records that on this date the bank was permitted to issue another 300,000 pesos, on the same conditions, exempted from taxes for five years and allowed to move its main offices to Chihuahua. The first clause is definitely a misreading of the concession but he might have had a different source for the final statementThe Chihuahua Enterprise, 11 January 1896, said that the bank was ‘established in Chihuahua’ in 1883.

Print details

The American Bank Note Company records the following printings.

Print date Quantity Series from to Comment
25c 1880 Feb 320,000 A 00001
with signature of Administración General de Rentas and bar overprint
with red Administración General seal and date '1882'These date from after October 1882. A note, dated 19 October 1882, states “ABNC presents two steel seals ..., reduced to 12 or 15 milimeters diameter, under each seal a combination of 4 numbers is to be printed, arranged in such a manner so as to allow them to be changed. Sufficient indelible ink to be furnished with the stamps for printing 2 to 3 millions of notes, also the necessary press or other apparatus for making the impressions. Send the above.to the Administracion General de Rentas del Estado de Chihuahua, Mexico, Chihuahua, Mexico and invoice to Fred' Probst and Co.” (ABNC)
with red Admininistración General seal and date '1883'
304501 with black Admininistración General seal on reverse
304501 320000 stolen in 1885
50c 1880 Feb 200,000 A 00001 with signature of Administración General de Rentas and bar overprint
with red Admininistración General seal and date '1882'
with red Admininistración General seal and date '1883'
200000 with black Admininistración General seal on reverse
1887 Dec 50,000 B 00001 50000 with two engraved signatures
may not have been issued
$1 1880 Feb 200,000 A 00001
with signature of Administración General de Rentas and bar overprint
without seal or date
overprinted with Administración General seal and date '1882'
overprinted with Administración General seal and date '1883'
25855 144000 overprinted with 'VALE PESOS FUERTES A LA PAR.' thrice. A note records 'Legend printed on 118,146 notes. Aug. 1883'
144001 200000 stolen in 1885
1885 June 160,000 A 00001 80000 pink underprint(?)
with three engraved signatures
A 00001 80000 brown underprint(?)
with three engraved signatures
overprinted 'VALE POR PESOS FUERTES A LA PAR'
1886 Nov 50,000 B 00001 50000 brown underprint(?)
with three engraved signatures
overprinted 'VALE POR PESOS FUERTES A LA PAR'
1887 Aug 50,000 C 00001 50000 with three engraved signatures
1887 Dec 25,000 B 00001 25000 pink underprint(?)
with three engraved signatures

Manuscript entries suggest that the plates were altered at each printingThe themes for the vignettes were suggested by Manuel de Herrera and the proofs were originally approved in February and March 1880. The 50c face plate was altered on 5 December 1887 by changing the series ‘A’ to ‘B’ and engraving signatures. The $1 face plate was altered on 10 June 1885 by engraving three signatures, so there were two $1 face plates in the vaults, and colour was changed on face and back to brown and red. $1 specimens with a brown background and red overprint VALE POR PESOS FUERTES A LA PAR  are dated June 1885 (Series A) and January 1888 (Series B)) and with a pink background (Series B) dated December 1886.

Batopilas

25c Banco Minero Chihuahuense BATOPILAS

The 25c and 50c notes are known with a BATOPILAS overprint (in four different varieties (type 1, type 2, type 3 and type 4) and on high serial numbers (25c 227083 - 245469; 50c 120229)). Creel had business connections in Batopilas, being on the board of the Compañía Minera de Batopilas. Francisco Larriva, who underwrote Compañia Minera de Batopilas notes, was an agent of the Banco Minero, so the bank must have provided some sort of banking service in the town.

 

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