On the Pillar Coinage of Mexico, 1732-1771

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Date ½ R 1 R 2 R 4 R 8 R
1732 -, F -, F -, F -, F F
1733MX MF MF, F MF MF MF, F
1733Mo MF F MF, F MF, F MF, F
1734 MF MF MF MF MF
1735 MF MF MF MF MF
1736 MF, F MF MF MF MF
1737 MF MF MF MF MF
1738 MF MF MF MF MF
1739 MF MF MF MF MF
1740 MF MF MF MF MF
1741 MF MF MF MF MF
1742 M M M MF MF
1743 M M M MF MF
1744 M M M MF MF
1745 M M M MF MF
1746 M M M MF MF
1747P5 M M M MF MF
1747F6 M M M MF MF
1748 M M M MF MF
1749 M M M MF MF
1750 M M M MF MF
1751 M M M MF MF
1752 M M M MF MF
1753 M M M MF MF
1754 M M M MF MF, MM
1755 M M M MM MM
1756 M M M MM MM
1757 M M M MM MM
1758 M M M MM MM
1759 M M M MM MM
1760 F6 M M M MM MM
1760 C3 M M M MM MM
1761 M M M MM MM
1762 M M M MM, MF MM, MF
1763 M M M MM, MF MM, MF
1764 M M M MF, MM MF
1765 M M M MF MF
1766 M M M MF MF
1767 M M M MF MF
1768 M M M MF MF
1769 M M M MF MF
1770 M, F M, F M, F MF, FM MF, FM
1771 F F F FM FM

The accompanying table lists the known assayers for each date and denomination. The denominations struck were the half, one, two, four and eight reales. Quarter reales were not struck until the 1790's, long after the pillar design was dropped. Assayer's initials in blue link to an article on that issue. Overdates are not listed here but are discussed on the individual pages.

Mexico City is the only mint which issued pillar coins for all three kings of the period, Philip V (1700-46), Ferdinand VI (1746-59) and Charles III (1759-88). The years in which the old king died and the new one succeeded usually saw issues in both kings' names. In 1733, two mintmarks were used, MX and Mo. In 1742, the shield sides of the half, one and two reales were redesigned and single letter assayers were used henceforth for the smaller denominations. In 1754, the pillar side of the eight reales was redesigned to show two different crowns rather than the similar crowns heretofore used.

Sources:

  • Gilboy, Frank F., The Milled Columnarios of Central and South America: Spanish American Pillar Coinage, 1732 to 1772, Regina, Saskatchewan: Prairie Wind Publishing, 1999.
  • Harper, David C., ed., North American Coins & Prices: A Guide to U. S., Canadian and Mexican Coins, 17th Ed., Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2007.
  • Harris, Robert P., Pillars & Portraits, San José, CA: Bonanza Press, 1968.