Translate / Traducir

El Banco de Nuevo León

Banco de Nuevo Leon

On 5 August 1891 the Secretario de Hacienda agreed a contract with Francisco Olivares and Manuel Peniche, representing a group of local investorsthe most prominent were Evaristo Madero who contributed $260,000, Marcelino Garza ($50,000), General Gerónimo Treviño ($30,000), Rómulo Larralde ($25,000) and Viviano L. Villarreal ($24,000), to establish a bank of issue in Monterrey with a capital of $600,000 and the right to set up branches in Nuevo León, Coahuila and Tamaulipas. The bank began operations on 1 October 1892 at 17 calle del Comercio (today Morelos).

As a consequence of the Ley General de Instituciones de Crédito of 1897 the bank entered into a new concession, which was approved by Congress on 22 November 1897.

The bank paid very good dividends to its shareholders: 12% in 1897 and 15% each year from 1899 through to 1911, with one exception, 14% in 1905.

At the end of 1910 the Dirección General de Correos ordered its offices not to accept notes of the Banco de Nuevo León. This naturally caused alarm and in the beginning of 1911 the bank was presented with large quantities of notes that holders wanted redeemed in coin (the value of notes in circulation dropped from $2,345,632 in December 1910 to $1,793,441 in January 1911). The board held extraordinary meetings and managed to get the order revoked and issued circulars[text needed] to reassure the public. It also had the support of the Banco Central Mexicano, and the local branches of the Banco Nacional de México and the Banco de Londres, banking houses and businesses put out notices that they would accept the Banco de Nuevo León notes at parEl Tiempo, 7 September 1911, informe of board to AGM, 27 August 1911.

On 15 September 1916, Carranza issued his decree ordering the banks to comply with the 1897 Ley General. On 3 October Rafael Herrera y Lasso presented his credentials as Inspector of Credit Institutions to Rodolfo M. Garza and consequently also as Interventor for the bank. Following an audit Garza wrote to Carranza reminding him of the 24 year old record of honesty and absence of negative antecedents or observations by the Secretaría de Hacienda. He added that the bank’s concession stated that any disagreement should be referred to the courts, and also that the banks were required to redeem their issues in metal coin, while the Constitutionalists were not so required, which devalued the bank’s assets.

On 8 January 1917 Genaro González, Daniel Zamarripa and Alfredo Lozano Saldaña appeared before Garza as representatives of Confiscation Committee (consejo de incaudación) appointed by the Secretaría de Hacienda. Garza asked for a postponement of the process in order to call a meeting of the Board and telegraph the Secretaría de Hacienda seeking a reprieve. Between 9 and 21 January numberless telegrams were sent and received by Garza and by the Confiscating Committee headed by Genaro González. On 30 January. Caledonio Junco de la Vega left for Mexico City to negotiate the situation. He and Garza held a meeting on 19 February but nothing was settled. The bank cashier Amador Paz and the contador Arturo Manrique were pressed to sign the Confiscation Document together with Genaro González, but they refused. Thus, the weeks went without the Confiscating Committee fulfilling its task.

Meanwhile, the bank proceeded to change its reserves for US gold. Word soon got to the Confiscation Committee. On 4 May 1917 they presented a telegram from the Secretaría de Hacienda requesting a forced oan of 150,000 US Dollars The bank declined to comply because only the manager or the Board were permitted to withdraw such amount from the bank. The manager was away and could not issue instructions and the Board could not gather all its members. The Confiscation Committee then ordered the bank employees to submit since they had express orders to indemnify them after their dismissal. Even this could not alter the bank employees’ fidelity. An appeal was made to the Military Commander and Governor General Alfredo Ricaut and on 29 May Paz and Manrique were summoned to the Government Palace where General Ricaut compelled them to obey. They informed the governor that the Confiscation Committee had never presented any written terms to the bank having to do with confiscation. On 1 June the members of the committee showed up with a written order, but it was rejected by the bank employees arguing that the terms were so vague that the Banco de Nuevo León was not even mentioned. Later that afternoon the Confiscation Committee again showed up, headed by Genaro Gonzalez, and met with. Paz and Manrique, accompanied by. Lazaro de la Garza, as legal representative of the bank. This time the Committee had with them a formal document for the confiscation of Banco de Nuevo León. The Confiscation Committee sealed the bank vaults and dismissed the employees. It was arranged that the bank building was to be under the surveillance of the police, forbidding entry to anyone.

Under Obregón's decree of 31 January 1921 the bank was placed into Class A (for banks whose assets were greater than their liabilities) and allowed to resume all customary operations except the issue of bank notes. The bank was finally liquidated in 1930.

American Bank Note Company print runs

Antonio V. Hernández was commissioned by the board to contact the American Bank Note Company regarding the printing of notes The board determined to issue notes of $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, $100 and $500, up to the stipulated maximum of $1,800,000, though in fact the $2 note was never produced. Hernández left for New York on 30 April 1892 and returned on 11 June.

The American Bank Note Company engraved special vignettes of Ignacio Zaragoza (C 193)General Ignacio Zaragoza was born in 1829 in Bahia de Espiritu Santo, Texas and died of typhoid fever in 1862. Liberal from the beginning, he fought against Santa Anna and Comonfort in defence of the Constitution of 1857 and the reform principals. Later he fought against the French, defeating and humiliating them at Fort Loreto, Puebla. While he did not live long enough to see the ultimate victory over the French, he was considered one of Mexico’s great heroes., the arms of Monterrey (C 477), a view of Monterrey (C476) and of a river and mountain (the Santa Catarina river and Cerro de la Silla) (C 475).

Date Value Number Series from to
June 1892 $1 50,000   00001 50000
$5 20,000   00001 20000
$10 20,000   00001 20000
$20 10,000   00001 10000
$50 3,000   00001 3000
$100 1,500   0001 1500
$500 100   1 100


Date Value Number Series from to
March 1894 $5 20,000   20001 40000
$10 10,000   20001 30000
$20 5,000   10001 15000
$50 4,000   3001 7000
$100 2,500   1501 4000
$500 300   101 400


For the next printing the title "El Cajero" was changed to "El Gerente".

Nuevo Leon 5 00000

Nuevo Leon 5 00000 reverse

Nuevo Leon 10 00000

Nuevo Leon 10 00000 reverse

Date Value Number Series from to
May 1899 $5 80,000   40001 120000
$10 30,000   30001 60000
$20 10,000   15001 25000
$50 2,000   7001 9000
$100 2,000   4001 6000
$500 600   401 1000


For the next printing the dateline "Monterrey ______18__" was changed to "Monterrey ______19__" .

Nuevo Leon 5 specimen

Nuevo Leon 5 specimen reverse

Nuevo Leon 10 specimen

Nuevo Leon 10 specimen reverse

Nuevo Leon 20 specimen

Nuevo Leon 20 specimen reverse

Nuevo Leon 50 specimen

Nuevo Leon 50 specimen reverse

Nuevo Leon 100 specimen

Nuevo Leon 100 specimen reverse

Nuevo Leon 500 specimen

Nuevo Leon 500 specimen reverse

Date Value Number Series from to
December 1902 $5 120,000   120001 240000
$10 60,000   60001 120000
$20 20,000   25001 45000
$50 4,000   9001 13000
$100 2,000   6001 8000


Date Value Number Series from to
November 1909 $5 64,000   240001 304000
$10 24,000   120001 144000
$20 7,500   45001 52500
$50 6,000   13001 19000
$100 3,200   8001 11200
$500 340   1001 1340


Date Value Number Series from to
September 1912 $5 64,000   304001 368000
$10 24,000   144001 168000
$20 7,500   52501 60000
$50 6,000   19001 25000
$100 3,200   11201 14400
$500 340   1341 1680


When Huerta allowed banks to issue $1 and $2 notes the Banco de Nuevo León, since it had received $1 notes from the ABNC in the past, ordered a new batch,wth "El Cajero' altered to "El Gerente" and the dateline changed to 19__.

Nuevo Leon 1 specimen

Nuevo Leon 1 specimen reverse

Date Value Number Series from to
December 1913 $1 50,000   50001 100000


The bank orderedthe bank later claimed that it had only asked for a quotation, but that the ABNC made a mistake and printed the notes (ABNC, letter to Charles Blackmore, Resident Agent, Mexico City, 3 April 1916) another 50,000 $1 notes in May 1914 but these were never delivered and destroyed in October 1924. 

Date Value Number Series from to
May 1914 $1 50,000   100001 150000



Benigno Guerrero

Guerrero was Jefe de HaciendaCEHM, Fondo DLI-1 Copiadores del General Bernardo Reyes (1889-1911), 8.5069 when he was appointed Interventor on 18 August 1892. He died in June 1896, while still Jefe de HaciendaCEHM, Fondo DLI-1 Copiadores del General Bernardo Reyes (1889-1911), 19.12243 letter Bernardo Reyes to Francisco M. Coghlan, 14 June 1896.

Guerrero signed notes dated from 1892 to 1897.

sig Benigno

Mariano Otero y Arce

Mariano Otero y Arce was the Jefe de Hacienda for Nuevo León. He took over as Interventor in December 1897, though he did not make his formal acceptance until 14 January 1898CEHM, Fondo CDLIV, Colección José Y. Limantour, 1a.1883, carpeta 39, legajo 10288. He only lasted a few months.

sig Interventor 2

Luis G. Camacho was appointed interventor on 28 August 1898CEHM, Fondo CDLIV Colección José Y. Limantour, 1a. 1883, carpeta 9, legajo 2359.

Camacho signed notes dated 1900 to 1904.

sig Camacho

Juan J. Farías

Farías signed notes dated from 15 September 1904 to 1 January 1910


Jeronimo Treviño Galindo

Trevio signed some $20 notes dated 1 January 1910 and then notes dated fromñ 5 May 1910 to 1914.

sig Trevino

Javier Larrea was a Inspector visitador for the postal service by 1903, discovering frauds in various officesEl Imparcial, 17 June 1903, El Imparcial, 4 August 1903; El Contemporaneo, 29 August 1903. For example, he uncovered fraud in Tierra Blanca. Veracruz in 1907El Tiempo, 25 October 1907 and in Campeche in 1908La Voz de México, 26 May 1908. He was still in this post in November 1910El Heraldo Mexicano, 21 November 1910 and as such told the local post offices not to accept the notes of the Banco de Nuevo León.

He signed the balance sheet for the Banco Mercantil de Monterrey 31 December 1910Diario Oficial, 18 January 1911.

He took over as manager of the Banco de Nuevo León on 18 January 1911, to replace SobralEl Imparcial, 20 January 1911, in an attempt to restore the bank's reputation, but resigned on 20 May. For some reason, the night before a group of youths from the best of society, out on a serenade and somewhat drunk, gathered at his house, threw stones and broke the windowsEl Imparcial, 22 May 1911; Gaceta de Guadalajara, 28 May 1911.

Larrea went back to being an inspector of post offices, and of custom housesEl Correo Español, 26 February 1913. In February 1913 under the new government Larrea was appointed interim Postmaster General (Director General de Correos)The Mexican Herald, 24 February 1913; El Imparcial, 26 February 1913 but was asked to resign five months laterEl Imparcial, Tomo XXXV, Núm. 7028, 4 July 1913.

Later he was reported to be a Felicista agent.

Larrea signed most of the notes dated 1 January 1911 (as interim?) but Treviño signed the $20 notes of that date.

sig Larrea


Francisco Armendariz

Armendariz signed notes dated 1892.

sig Armendariz

Viviano VillarrealViviano L. Villarreal y González was a stock-holder in many industrial and mining firms as well as a practicing lawyer and a politician who was governor of Nuevo León on two occasions.

He was born in San Nicolás Hidalgo, Nuevo León on 2 December 1838, the son of a powerful landowner. After studying law he served as a judge and a deputy in the local congress. He was then Secretario General during the governorship of Jerónimo Treviño and became governor himself on 4 October 1879, taking over from Genaro Garza García, and handing it over to Garza García on 4 October 1881.

He finally retired from public affairs in 1885 to concentrate on his private business and to administer the Madero fortune. In 1892, at the founding of the Banco de Nuevo León, he was appointed president of the Board of Directors. He resigned from this position at the beginning of the Revolution to be a candidate for the governorship in 1911. As a supporter of Madero, he was chosen governor for 1911 to 1915 but resigned after Madero’s assassination.

He died in Monterrey on 24 September 1938, at the age of 100.

He was the brother of Felicitos Villarreal, secretary of the treasury under the Convention, in 1914-1915.

Villarreal signed notes dated 29 December 1892(?) to 16 September 1911 ($5 and $10 values).

sig Villareal

Marcelino Garza was a businessman from Saltillo who controlled the Compañía Industrial Saltillera, associated with Evaristo Madero’s Compañía Industrial de Parras in the Compañia Industrial del Norte, S. A.

M. Garza also signed notes dated 16 September 1911 ($20, $50, $500) and then notes dated to 15 May 1912.

sig Garza

Constantino de Tárnava

De Tarnava signed notes dated from 5 February 1912 (thus having some crossover with Garza) to 1914 but his signatures is also on notes with earlier dates thus: 15 February 1904 ($100), 15 September 1904 ($20), 27 November 1906 ($20, $50), 21 November 1908 ($20, $50), 5 May 1910 ($20, $50, $100) and 16 September 1910 ($20).

sig Tarnova


Andres Martínez Cárdenas 

Martínez Cárdenas signed notes dated from 1892 to 1895.

sig Cardenas

Amador Paz 

Paz took over from Pedro Olvera at the beginning of August 1896The Two Republics, 8 August 1896: Semana Mercantil, 10 August 1896: Diario del Hogar, 11 August 1896. He signed notes dated 4 July 1897 and 18 October 1897.

He was again interim cajero in 1916.

sig Paz


He signed $10 notes dated April 1896.

sig Cajero


Ernesto MaderoErnesto Madero Farías took over as managing director on 10 September 1899 and left on 9 July 1908.

Madero was from the powerful, regional Madero family He was born in Parras, Coahuila on 12 October 1872, the son of Evaristo Madero and uncle of the future president, Franciso I. Madero. He studied finance and mining at John Hopkins University, USA, and in France. In Coahuila he was a businessman and large landowner who administered the family's businessesBetween 1895 and 1912 Ernesto Madero was involved, as an oficial or shareholder, in the following companies: Ernesto Madero y Hnos, Salvador Madero y Cía, Compañía Explotadora Coahuilense, Compañía Industrial de Parras S. A., The Mexican Mining and Industrial Company, Compañía Minera, Fundidora y Afinadora Monterrey S. A., Negociación Minera Santa María de la Paz y Anexas, Compañía Minera Dolores de Guadalcazar S. A., Compañía Minera Restauradora de Guadalcázar S. A., Compañía Minera del Carmen S. A., Compañía Minera Carbonato S. A., Compañía Minera La Fraternal S. A., Compañía Minera Azteca S. A., Compañía Carbonífera de Nuevo León y Coahuila S. A., Compañía Metalúrgica de Torreón, Compañía Harinera de Chihuahua, Compañía Harinera del Golfo S. A., Jabonera de La Laguna S. A., Molinos de Cilindro de Monterrey, Fábrica de Vidrios y Cristales de Monterrey S. A., Compañía Fundidora de Fierro y Acero de Monterrey S. A. and Empresa Editorial de Monterrey.

He sympathized with Joseph Ives Limantour and served as Secretario de Hacienda from 26 May 1911 until 18 February 1913. He and his brother Evaristo tried to negotiate with his nephew Francisco on the the cause of the Revolution but after the decena trágica he fled to Cuba and then the United States.

He returned after the Revolution and died in Mexico City on 2 February 1958.

Madero signed notes dated from 1900 to 1 February 1908.

sig Madero

Rodolfo J. García was appointed contador of the Banco Mercantil de Monterrey on 1 December 1899El Correo Español, 15 December 1899.

He took over as managing director on 9 July 1908 but resigned in January 1911, supposedly for reasons of health. In fact he had learnt that Enrique Martínez Sobral, Jefe del Departamento de Crédito y Comercio of the local Secretaría de Hacienda, was going to take over the bank’s management, though on learning of the intrigue Sobral declined the invitation. However, Javier Larrea, the Interventor, then took over. Larrea was forced to resign as manager on 22 May 1911, following the fall of Porfirio Díaz, and Garza took over.

Rodolfo J. Garza signed notes dated 21 November 1908 to 1 January 1911.

sig Garcia

Rodolfo M. Garza took over as managing director from Javier Larrea in May 1911El Economista Mexicano, 30 September 1911. but resigned on 2 October 1911 when he was appointed Presidente Municipal.

Rodolfo M. Garza signed some notes dated from 16 September 1910 ($20, $50 and $100) and then notes from 16 September 1911 to 1914.

sig Gerente

 Other personages

Antonio V. Hernández was the bank’s first manager. He left the bank on 31 August 1899 after certain disagreements and went to work for the Banco Mercantil de Monterrey.  

Evaristo MaderoEvaristo Madero and his sons were the largest producers of guayule, a raw material for crude rubber, in Mexico. They had banking businesses such as in the Banco Central Mexicano, Banco Mercantil de Monterrey, Banco de Nuevo León, and Banco de La Laguna, as well as industrial companies such as the Compañía Industrial Jabonera de La Laguna, Compañía Nacional Explotadora de Carbón y Coke, La Estrella, Hilados y Estampados, Compañía Fundidora de Fierro y Acero de Monterrey, and the Compañía Metalúrgica de Torreón. Their mining companies included Santa María de la Paz, Matehuala, Angustias, Dolores y Anexas in Pozos, Santa María de la Paz, La Purísima Concepción y Anexas, Catorce, Nueva Quebradilla y Anexas or Compañía Minera y Beneficiadora El Edén, Compañía Exploradora y Beneficiadora de Minerales de Zacatecas, and Ramón Corona de Naica, and the Carbonífera de Sabinas.

Evaristo died on 6 April 1911.