Mining scrip

La Negociación Minera de Symón y Camacho, Angangueo

Angangueo is a town and municipality located in a small canyon in high rugged forested mountains in far eastern Michoacán. It was a mining town but is now more known for the nearby Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve.

At the end of the 19th century there were a number of mining companies in Angangueo, such as Symon y Camacho, Cia. Limitada del Ferrocarril y Minas de Michoacán, De Wilde & Cia. and Ramón Sotomayor y Hermanos.

Symon y Camacho was established by Robert R. Symon, a Briton, and Santiago Camacho, and had interests in the concessions for the mints at Alamos, Hermosillo, Culiacán and Durango, and in building railways. In 1900 a newspaper reported that this company monopolised all branches of commerce, by paying its workers with tokens (fichas). This obliged the unfortunate recipients to purchase their necessities in the tienda de raya, where they were accepted at half their valueEl Tiempo, México, 7 October 1900.

Were these tokens paper or metal?