Benito Juarez is an important figure in Mexican history who was born into poverty and rose to power because of his hard work and determination. Despite many setbacks along the way, he never gave up. He was known for being a man with integrity who stood up against injustice no matter what the cost. He was born on March 21, 1806 in Oaxaca, Mexico. He was orphaned at a young age but, with determination he received a formal education and became a lawyer in 1831. After that he landed small roles in local government and even landed the role of governor of Oaxaca. During his term as governor, he completed various projects that were vital to infrastructure and education.

Picture of Young Benito Juarez Alongside Wife & Sister | Source: Wikipedia

With the return of conservatives and General Santa-Anna in the 1853 presidential elections, Benito Juarez fled into exile in New Orleans before returning once again to Mexico in 1855 and rejoining the world of politics. In 1858 he became president of Mexico. Under him, Mexico stopped making foreign debt payments to Britain, Spain, and France in 1861. This led to military intervention from the European powers.

Portrait of Napoleon III of France (1808-1873) | Source: Wikipedia

Napoleon III of France planned conquer Mexico, this prevented Spain and Britain from partaking in military operations, ultimately leaving France to deal with Mexico. In 1863, Maximilian the leader installed by France, took power. This forced Juarez to flee to the US where he continued pressure against France. In 1867 France withdrew from Mexico and Juarez returned to Mexico where he called for elections and won another term in office. He died in office in 1872.

The Execution of Emperor Maximilian of Mexico, June 19, 1867 | Source: Wikipedia

Banknotes Featuring Benito Juarez

Benito Juarez is still remembered and honored throughout Mexico. He has been immortalized on Mexican banknotes as well. Lets look at a few banknotes that feature Juarez. Here is the Mexico 50 Pesos, 1981 Fourth Issues. Its colored in blue, black, red, and green. The obverse side shows the Palacio Nacional (National Palace) on Plaza de la Constitucion in Mexico City, the 26th president, Benito Pablo Juarez Garcia. Meanwhile, the reverse side shows a bank guilloche, the URNA ZAPOTECA (funeral urn) from the Aztec temple, and a bank seal.

Mexico 50 Pesos | 1981 | Benito Juarez | Source: Banknote World

In 2000 the Central Bank of Mexico issued a commemorative series of Mexican peso bank notes to celebrate its 75th anniversary. Every banknote has the phrase 75TH ANIVERSARIO, 1925-2000 printed below the banks name at the upper left-hand corner. The Mexico 20 Pesos banknote has the Mexican coat of arms: a Mexican eagle perched on a cactus while eating a rattlesnake, a stylized open book pattern, two sorting bars and Benito Pablo Juarez Garcia- the first indigenous president of Mexico- printed on the obverse side. The reverse side of the note features the Juarez Semicircle in Alameda Central park.

Mexico 20 Pesos | 2000 | Benito Juarez | Source: Wikipedia

Mexico 20 Pesos, 2017. It is a blue, red, and green polymer banknote. Its obverse side shows a stylized bird in flight, balance scales and an open book, and a portrait of the 26th president, Benito Pablo Juarez Garcia. Its reverse side depicts the bank seal, jewelry, the mask of the Lightning God Cocijo, and a view of the Zapotec ruins at Monte Alban, Oaxaca. Because the banknote is made of polymer substrate it does not have a security thread or a watermark. However, it has the map of Mexico as a registration device.

Mexico 20 Pesos | 2017 | Source: Banknote World

Sources:

https://www.banxico.org.mx/banknotes-and-coins/benito-juarez-banknotes-banco.html

https://www.unodc.org/docs/nds/UGM8/InformationAbouttheVenue_ENG.pdf

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Benito-Juarez

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benito_Ju%C3%A1rez

https://www.biography.com/political-figures/benito-juarez

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