We are taking a trip to the South American country Chile and looking at the ½ Escudos p134Aa 1962-1975 note. This note is a pretty blue color and has Spanish text. The note shows three pivotal figures to Chile: Bernardo O’Higgins, Diego de Almagro and Diego Portales.
Bernardo O’Higgins portrait in shown on the front of the note. He was a wealthy landowner of Spanish and Irish decent. He helped Chile gain their independence from Spain during the Chilean War of Independence, and is considered one of Chile’s founding fathers. He was the first holder of the Supreme Director of Chile after Chile became a fully independent country. O’Higgins held this title from 1817 until 1823. As Supreme Director of Chile, he was mostly successful. He created markets, courts, libraries, hospitals, improved agriculture, and saw over military reforms. However, over time O’Higgins alienated political parties and the church which left him with fewer and fewer supporters. Along with radical reforms and wishing to abolish noble titles, O’Higgins was removed from office in 1823, and was succeeded by a more conservative opponent and former ally of his.
On the back of the note is the Arrival of Diego de Almagro in Chile. This is a mural that is in the former National Congress of Chile in Santiago. Almagro was a Spanish soldier who helped lead the Spanish conquest in Peru. Along with his friend and fellow captain, Almagro conquered the Inca empire. Together, they laid the foundations for Quito and Trujillo as Spanish cities in Ecuador and Peru respectively. Additionally, from Peru, Almagro made the first expedition to central Chile.
The watermark on this note is a portrait of Diego Portales. Portales was a Chilean statesman, entrepreneur and a minister of president José Joaquín Prieto’s government. He played a key role in the creation of the Constitution in 1833 which was the basis of the Chilean government for nearly a century. Portales believed in a constitutional, authoritarian republic led by upper class men, and some considered the Constitution of 1833 to be the embodiment of “Portalian thought.” The constitution was replaced by the Constitution of 1925 which created an electoral tribunal, gave legislative initiative powers to the president, and separated church from state.
Chile ½ Escudos p134Aa is a beautiful note that tells the story of the beginnings of this country. Diego de Almagro who made the first expedition to Chile. Bernardo O’Higgins who helped lead the county to independence and held the role of Supreme Director of Chile for 6 years. And finally, Diego Portales who helped create the Constitution of 1833. This note is our current featured note and offered at a discounted price for a limited time.
Denomination: 1/2 Escudos
Pick #: 134Aa
Coloration: Blue/Light Yellow
Depictions: General Bernando OHiggins; Oak Leafs; Arrival of Diego de Almagro
Note Size: 5 3/4″ x 2 3/4″
Continent: South America
Watermark: Profile of Man (D. Diego Portales)