Paper Money of Chihuahua

.. by Simon Prendergast

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Home The History El Banco Minero Signatories on Banco Minero notes

Signatories on Banco Minero notes

The earlier ABNC notes were signed by Inocente Ochoa or Luis Terrazas as President, Enrique Creel or his brother Juan as Manager (Gerente), the younger Luis Terrazas, Juan Terrazas, Manuel Prieto or Martín Falomir as Boardmember (Consejero), and M. G. Granados, Ramón Cuellar or J. M. Aguirre Hernández as Interventor.

The later ABNC notes were signed by Juan A. Creel as Manager (Gerente), Luis Terrazas or Martín Falomir as President (Presidente) and Ramón Cuellar, O. Casa Madrid or A. Martínez as Interventor.

Inocente Ochoa: He was a member of a wealthy family based in El Paso del Norte (later Ciudad Juárez) and had offered his hospitality to Benito Juárez when the latter took refuge there in 1864 and 1865. He was married to Concepción Samaniego, Mariano’s sister and the two men co-operated in politics and business. He remained connected with the bank and was a director in 1897 and 1900.
Ochoa was president from [            ] until [            ].

Luis Terrazas: Terrazas was born in 1829, the son of a butcher. He was a hero of the Indian wars and supported Benito Juárez in the darkest days of the French intervention, as governor supposedly raising and arming 2,000 men.
In 1866 Terrazas, then governor, acquired (with Enrique Müller) the 864,850 acres at El Sauz and Encinillas (confiscated by the government from Martínez del Río), as reward for his part in Maximilian’s overthrow. Terrazas received other land-grants after he helped Juárez put down an abortive military coup by Porfirio Díaz in 1872.
In 1868 Terrazas was re-elected governor. In July 1872 Juárez died and was succeeded as president by Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada. In 1876, when Lerdo announced that he was to seek re-election, the disappointed Porfirio Díaz again rose in revolt. Díaz defeated the Lerdistas and took Mexico City and from then until 1910 (except for the short period 1880-1884 when Manuel González was president) he held the presidency.
Since Terrazas had opposed Díaz (and his supporter in Chihuahua, Angel Trias) the president maintained anti-Terracista administrations in the state through the 1880s and 1890s (though Terrrazas was governor from 1879 to 1884). However, by judicious investment and marriage, Terrazas built up an empire of cattle ranches, mills, banks and factories worth 27 million pesos. Díaz allowed Terrazas to become state governor again in 1903 and he was succeeded by his son-in-law Enrique C. Creel in 1907. Political hegemony now complemented economic power, as the Creel-Terrazas oligarchy came to dominate state politics, local government and the courts.
Terrazas’ power was thus derived from his interests in land, his other commercial interests (he owned textile mills, granaries, railroads, telephone companies, candle factories, sugar mills, meat packing plants and several mines), and his position at the summit of the Chihuahuan oligarchy.

Enrique Clay Creel: Born on 30 August 1854, Creel was the son of Ruben W. Creel, the United States consul in Chihuahua, and Paz Cuilty, one of General Luis Terrazas’ sisters.
Creel began his banking activities in 1881 as manager of the branch of the Banco Minero in El Paso del Norte (now Ciudad Juárez) and ended up as President of the bank.
Through his family connections, vast personal wealth and astute business sense Creel was a prominent member of the oligarchy that came to dominate Chihuahuan industry, politics and the courts. He was elected regidor of Chihuahua in 1878. He was a deputy in several legislatures and at times represented Chihuahua and Durango.  On 18 August 1904 Creel was named interim governor of Chihuahua and so resigned his posts, though the board reserved the right to accept his resignationAGN, Antiguos Bancos de Emisión, Actas de Banco Minero, libro 2, 27 February 1897 to 18 March 1905.
He substituted for his uncle, Luis Terrazas, as governor from August 1904 to December 1906, when he went to Washington as Mexican ambassador. He was state governor from October 1907 until 1911 and at times also minister of foreign relations. He was president of the Comisión de Cambios that planned the monetary reforms of 1905.
In his private activities he was president of the Asociación de Banqueros de la Republica Mexicana, founder and president of the Banco Central de México, and on the board of the Batopilas Mining Company and the Banco Comercial de Chihuahua. In 1887 he was the first president of the Chihuahua Chamber of Commerce.
Creel never fully won the trust of his nationalistic Mexican compatriots. As his critic Bulnes put it, Creel was ‘half yankee by blood’ and ‘by character and education a yankee-and-a-half’. He died on 17 August 1931 in Mexico City.

Juan Andrew Creel: Born in Chihuahua in 1865, the brother of Enrique Creel, he was cajero in 1888 and appointed sub-gerente on 18 August 1904. On 18 March 1905 he took over the manager’s position from his brother and held it until the bank went into liquidation in the early 1930s. He died in 1950.

Manuel M. Prieto y Parra: Born in Ciudad Juárez in 1858, Prieto was a state deputy and represented Jalisco in both the Congress and the Senate. By profession he was a solicitor and magistrate of the Supremo Tribunal de Justicia. He was a member of La Universal, a law practice that had a virtual monopoly in Chihuahua, and lawyer for the Banco Minero and several important foreign companies and individuals. He was a partner with Luis Terrazas in a cotton-mill and a starch factory. In 1912 he contributed 5,000 pesos to help Orozco's rebellion and was president of the junta encharged with organising a loan of 1,200,000 pesos. He died in 1938.

Luis Terrazas hijo: The son of General Terrazas, born in 1861, he appears as a member of the board between 1896 and 1911 and his signature was printed in facsimile on some 1912 and 1913 notes.
Luis stayed in Chihuahua in late 1913 when the other directors decamped the United States and was badly treated by Villa.

Juan Terrazas Cuilty: He was a son of Luis Terrazas and a vocal on the board of directors. Born in the city of Chihuahua in 1852, as a member of the family he owned vast estates, had interests in several companies, including as Tesorero of the Batopilas Mining Company,  and a distinguished political career, including local deputy and senator for Campeche. In 1878 he established a general store, ‘Juan Terrazas’, at calle Juárez 601, Chihuahua. He was President of the Cámara de Comercio, Industrial, Agrícola y Minera of Chihuahua in 1900, 1902, 1909 and 1910. He married María Luján, daughter of Ramón Remigio Luján and Francisca Zuloaga. He died in Chihuahua in 1925.
He signed 2,000 $50 notes as consejero in 1910.

J. Martín Falomir: Born in 1868, the son of José María Falomir, Martín was jefe político of Iturbide (i.e. Chihuahua), a deputy, and a partner with Luis Terrazas in the Compañía Minera La Virgen, a gas-works and a meat-packing plant. He married María de los Santos Maytorena Tapia, the sister of the governor of Sonora, José María Maytorena. He fled Chihuahua when Villa reached the capital, and retired to Tucson. After the revolution he worked in the banking and exchange department of the International Exchange and Commission Company of El Paso. He died in Chihuahua in 1954.

Falomir signed the later $20 ABNC notes dated 3 July through to 25 July 1914 though Luis Terrazas was signing other denominations with dates in the same month. This suggests that Falomir merely stepped in as a substitute when Terrazas was absent. As Falomir signed the Bouligny and Schmidt notes he may have been in charge of operations in Mexico City.

Manuel García Granados: He appears as Interventor from September 1888 until January 1890.

Ramón Cuellar: was appointed Interventor in December 1890 and held the post until 1895. Born in 1839, he came to Chihuahua in 1864 as part of Juárez' entourage. He became a judge in 1873 and was later made Jefe de Hacienda. He fought for the Terracistas and on their victory in November 1879 was appointed Administrador de Rentas, a position he held for just over four years. On 9 January 1884 he was named Substitute Governor for three months. After this, he returned to the Administración General de Rentas, until 28 July 1885. Later he was manager of the Banco Mexicano until 1897 when, on approving the merger with the Banco Minero, the Secretaría de Hacienda named him Interventor de Bancos en el Estado, a post he held until October 1912. He died in Chihuahua in 1917.

José Maria Aguirre Hernández: On 5 October 1912 he was appointed Interventor in substitution for Leopoldo Palancia, who had been nominated to the post but forfeited it by not taking up the employment, and took over on 31 OctoberAGN, Antiguos Bancos de Emisión, Actas de Banco Minero, libro 5, 18 December 1909 to 5 January 1924

O. Casa Madrid:

A. Martínez:


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