Translate / Traducir

Republican 1 Real

by Dave Busse

The One Real series is quite popular among collectors and it features one of the classic and most sought after rarities in all of República Mexicana, the 1824 Durango 1R Hookneck (Profile Eagle) Style.

KM 371.1 1r Durango 1824KM 371.1 1r Durango 1824 reverse

KM 371.1 1R Durango 1824 DoRL (Stack’s Bowers auction, 25 February 2021, lot 74101)
The Hookneck eagle. This early specimen features retrograde superscript Ss and is very difficult to encounter.

The standard size 1R has a diameter of 20mm and a weight of 3.384 grams with a silver fineness of 0.9027. The basic design and legends are similar to those of the ½R with the exception of the denomination, which is usually 1R. After the Hookneck came numerous issues of the Facing Eagle Style struck at eleven different mints between 1825 and 1869. At this time, there are no known 1R from Alamos, Catorce or Oaxaca, nor have I found any record of those mints striking them. These are usually elusive in higher grades (EF or better). As with other minors, there are a few hoard and/or common dates.

The coin, valued at 12½¢ in the US, and often referred to as a bit, circulated widely and heavily because of its constant use in day-to-day commerce. Specifications of diameter (20mm), weight (3.384g) and fineness (90.27% silver, 9.73% copper) were the same in both the Hookneck and the Facing Eagle Styles. Most are quite elusive in uncirculated condition. Moreover, many higher-grade examples, VF, EF, AU and even some UNC often show evidence of having been cleaned. If you are attending a coin show, it is worth checking dealers who do not specialize in Mexican coins as they may use a catalog as a price guide and you could pick up a bargain. Also, be aware that some 1R were often struck without a collar and one frequently finds over-diameter pieces (sometimes referred to as having a “Broad Flan.”). In fact, I happen to have one Zacatecas piece (a 1R ZS 1833 O. M). that is 22.7mm in diameter with a weight of 4.520 grams even though it is probably no better than VF!

The following mints produced 1R in the listed years:

Mint Years Struck
Chihuahua 1834, 1844-45, 1855
Culiacán 1846, 1848, 1850-54, 1856-58, 1860-61, 1869
Durango 1824 (Hookneck), 1832, 1834, 1836-37, 1841-62, 1864
Estado de México (Tlalpan) 1829
Guadalajara 1825-26, 1828-32, 1834-35, 1837-62
Guadalupe y Calvo 1844-51
Guanajuato 1826-62, 1867-68 (some sources show a RNC 1869 & 1870)
Hermosillo 1839, 1862, 1867
Mexico City 1824-36, 1838-63
San Luis Potosí 1831, 1841-63
Zacatecas 1825-63, 1869

Currently, I have no evidence to indicate that Alamos, Catorce, or Oaxaca struck the 1R.