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5000 Pesos 1989, Mexico

in Krause book Number: 88c
Years of issue: 28.03.1989
Edition:
Signatures: Unknown signature
Serie: 1985 - 1989 Issue
Specimen of: 19.07.1985
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 155 x 66
Printer: Banco de México, Mexico

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5000 Pesos 1989

Description

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5000 Pesos 1989

The Niños Héroes, also known as the Heroic Cadets or Boy Soldiers, were six Mexican teenage military cadets. These cadets died defending Mexico at Mexico City's Chapultepec Castle (then serving as the Mexican Army's military academy) from invading U.S. forces in the 13 September 1847 Battle of Chapultepec, during the Mexican-American War. One of the cadets, Juan Escutia, wrapped himself with the Mexican flag and jumped from the roof of the castle to keep it from falling into enemy hands. The Niños Héroes are commemorated by a national holiday on September 13.

Chapultepec Castle was defended by Mexican troops under the command of Nicolás Bravo, including cadets from the military academy. The number of cadets present has been variously given, from 47 to a few hundred. The greatly outnumbered defenders battled General Scott's troops for about two hours before General Bravo ordered retreat, however the six cadets refused to fall back and fought to the death. Legend has it that the last of the six, Juan Escutia, leapt from Chapultepec Castle wrapped in the Mexican flag to prevent the flag from being taken by the enemy. According to the later account of an unidentified US officer, "about a hundred" cadets between the ages of 10 and 16 were among the "crowds" of prisoners taken after the Castle's capture.

The bodies of the six youths were buried on the grounds of Chapultepec Park. On March 5, 1947, a few months before the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Chapultepec, U.S. President Harry S. Truman placed a wreath at the monument and stood for a few moments of silent reverence. Asked by American reporters why he had gone to the monument, Truman said, "Brave men don't belong to any one country. I respect bravery wherever I see it". In 1947 their remains were found and identified and, on 27 September 1952, were re-interred at the Monument to the Heroic Cadets in Chapultepec.

Heroic Cadets

Juan de la Barrera was born in Mexico City in 1828, the son of Ignacio Mario de la Barrera, an army general, and Juana Inzárruaga. He enlisted at the age of 12 and was admitted to the Academy on 18 November 1843. During the attack on Chapultepec he was a lieutenant in the military engineers (sappers) and died defending a gun battery at the entrance to the park. Aged 19, he was the oldest of the six, and was also part of the school faculty as a volunteer teacher in engineering.

Juan Escutia was born in Tepic (today's capital of the state of Nayarit) at some time between 1828 and 1832. Records show he was admitted to the Academy as a cadet on 8 September 1847, but his other papers were lost during the assault. He is believed to have been a second lieutenant in an artillery company. It is claimed that this cadet officer wrapped himself up in the flag and jumped from the roof to keep it from falling into enemy hands. His body was found on the east flank of the hill, alongside that of Francisco Márquez. A large mural above the stairway painted by muralist Gabriel Flores depicts his jump from the roof with the Mexican flag. This account has been regarded as a legend by several modern Mexican historians.

Francisco Márquez was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, in 1834. Following the death of his father, his mother, Micaela Paniagua, remarried Francisco Ortiz, a cavalry captain. He applied to the Academy on 14 January 1847 and, at the time of the battle, belonged to the first company of cadets. A note included in his personnel record says his body was found on the east flank of the hill, alongside that of Juan Escutia. At 13 years old, he was the youngest of the six heroes.

Agustín Melgar was a native of Chihuahua, Chihuahua, born there at some time between 1828 and 1832. He was the son of Esteban Melgar, a lieutenant colonel in the army, and María de la Luz Sevilla, both of whom died while he was still young, leaving him the ward of his older sister. He applied to the Academy on 4 November 1846. A note in his personnel record explains that after finding himself alone, he tried to stop the enemy on the north side of the castle.

Fernando Montes de Oca was born in Azcapotzalco, then a town just to the north of Mexico City and nowadays one of the boroughs of the Federal District, between 1828 and 1832. His parents were José María Montes de Oca and Josefa Rodríguez. He had applied to the Academy on 24 January 1847, and was one of the cadets who remained in the castle. His personnel record reads: "Died for his country on 13 September 1847".

Vicente Suárez was born in 1833 in Puebla, Puebla. He was the son of Miguel Suárez, a cavalry officer, and María de la Luz Ortega. He applied for admission to the Academy on 21 October 1845, and during his stay was an officer cadet.

Right from cadets are Mexican national flags.

In top left corner an inscription: "El Banco de Mexico S.A. pagara Cinco Mil Pesos a la vista al portador" or "Banco de Mexico SA will pay five thousand pesos at sight to bearer".

Denominations in numerals are top right and on the left side.

Revers:

5000 Pesos 1989

Chapultepec Castle

Chapultepec Castle (Castillo de Chapultepec) is located on top of Chapultepec Hill. The name Chapultepec stems from the Náhuatl word chapoltepēc which means "at the grasshopper's hill". It is located in the middle of Chapultepec Park in Mexico City at a height of 2,325 meters (7,628 ft) above sea level. The site of the hill was a sacred place for Aztecs, and the buildings atop it have served several purposes during its history, including that of Military Academy, Imperial residence, Presidential home, observatory, and presently, the Museo Nacional de Historia.

Is the only Royal Castle in North America, that was used to house sovereigns: the Mexican Emperor Maximilian I, and his consort Empress Carlota, during the Second Mexican Empire.

On September 13, 1847, the Niños Héroes ("Hero Children") died defending the castle while it was taken by United States forces during the Battle of Chapultepec of the Mexican-American War. They are honored with a large mural on the ceiling above the main entrance to the castle.

On the right side is a combined emblem.

Military College Corps emblem of Mexico

Two crossed guns on the background of woven canopy, on top are the bundle of lightning, symbolizing the explosions, is the emblem of the Mexican infantry military college since 1823 (Heroico Colegio Militar).

Mexican Marine Corps emblem

An anchor with rope is part of the Mexican Marine Corps emblem since 1823.

By all appearances, the engraver portrayed them together, trying to emphasize the unity of naval and land forces in the defense of the motherland.

In the top left corner is a monogram of Banco de Mexico.

In the top right corner is a logo of Banco de Mexico.

Denominations in numerals are top right and bottom left. Top left in words.

Comments:

Obverse engraver: J. Peral

Reverse engraver: S. Moreno