Leyte 1943 Military Issue Notes in One Peso,2 Pesos,5 Pesos, and 10 Pesos denominations have been known to collectors since 2002.
The Standard Catalog of World Paper Money - Specialized Issues has some nice historical background regarding the Leyte 1943 Military Issue but then goes on to state that no such notes are known to numismatics. This information is very much out of date.
Since I used to believe everything that I read in Pick I was very much suprised in June 2011 when I saw a pair of Unc Leyte 1943 Military Issue (1 Peso and 2 Pesos) notes offered on ebay by the Heritage Art Center in Manila. Since I know that there are a lot of counterfeit notes coming out of Manila lately I downloaded the ebay images and forwarded them to Ray Czahor at Cookie Jar Collectibles for his opinion.
For those of you that do not know Ray he is a professional numismatist and one of the foremost authorities on Philippine coins and notes. Ray is listed in the acknowledgements section of many of our numismatic bibles including the Red Book, U.S./Philippine Coins(the Allen Catalog), and the Standard Catalog of Paper Money Specialized Issues.
Ray checked the photos against the reference notes in his collection and thought that they looked authentic. I purchased the notes and when they arrived they were indeed CU.
The next time that I saw Leyte 1943 Military Issue Notes offered was in October 2011 when One Peso, 2 Pesos and 5 Pesos notes were listed in Cookie Jar Collectibles Philippine Mail Bid Sale XVI. The 1 Peso and two Pesos were listed as CU and the 5 Pesos AU with a slight tear on the top edge. I purchased the 5 Pesos note and the one and two pesos notes went unsold.
Another purchase that I made in Philippine Mail Bid Sale XVI was volume one of The New Pesos Fuertes, the Bank Note Society Of The Philippines Journal, from August 2005. Several important articles were in the journal including an article on Overstamps On Japanese Invasion Money Of The Philippines (JIM) by Aldo Basso; and World War ll Emergency Service Currency For Mountain Province by John Hunt. Most importantly was an article by Jose M. Escano on the Leyte Province 1943 Military Issue.
Escanos article had additional information regarding this issue that is not reported in Pick as well as descriptions and plates of the face and back of all four denominations.
Since The New Pesos Fuertes has never had a very large circulation outside of the Philippines the information in this important article is probably unknown to most collectors and perhaps even to the editors of the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money Specialized Issues. For this reason I will quote some of the new information published in the Escano article.
Quote: No specimen or picture appeared of any of the guerilla notes reportedly coming from the Leyte Province 1943 Military Issue, and no such notes circulated among collectors until about (3) years ago. guerilla notes with denominations of one peso, two pesos, five pesos and ten pesos (see Plates 1 to 8) surfaced from a small collection which came from reliable sources from the Samar/Leyte area. The ten peso denomination note is the rarest since not more than 10 pieces came out, so only a few collectors were fortunate enough to have this note for their collections.(Escano, 2005)
Quote: The materical card or paper used are far different, and the design and wordings on the four different denominations are so unique and different that these negate any suspicion on the authenticity and genuiness of these Leyte Province notes. Forger would probably use similar or copied from existing guerilla notes coming from other provinces. Only the highly cynical non-collectors of guerilla notes would insist on questioning these notes. Their stubborn attitude shows their apparent ignorance on Philippine emergency and guerilla notes.(Escano, 2005)
When I compared my peso, two pesos, and five pesos notes to the plates and descriptions in the Escano article everything matched. In fact my 2 Pesos note (serial number 00263) is the actual 2 Pesos note illustrated in Plate 03 and 04 of the Escano article.
Another interesting observation is that the hand writting on the labels affixed to the protective holders the three specimens came in is identical. This is very intriging since the 1 Peso and 2 Pesos came from a dealer in the Philippines and the 5 Pesos was a consignment from the widow of a collector in the United States. Apparently at one time all three of these notes must have been owned by the same individual.
The picture attached to this Journal entry is a scan of the face of my three notes.
See my Journal entry: Leyte 1943 Military Issue (Unlisted in Pick) Additional Photos http://notes.www.collectors-society.com/JournalDetail.aspx?JournalEntryID=10598 for photos of the backs of these notes.
If you are interested in USA/Philippine coins visit my USA/Philippine Type Set at: http://coins.www.collectors-society.com/registry/coins/SetListing.aspx?PeopleSetID=51257
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