In 1991 hyperinflation was quickly eroding the value of the peso and the Mexico City Mint prepared a set of trial or pattern coins with new larger denominations using different planchet sizes & materials. The trial coins consisted of 100, 200, 500, 1000, and 2000 peso coins. The patterns would never make it to production as the peso became devalued in 1994 and the coinage reform converted 1000 pesos = 1 Nuevo Peso making the new denominations no longer required.
Of all the pattern coins the 1000 Pesos Atlan had significant numbers find their way into circulation and some collectors classify this as a circulation coin instead of a pattern. Valid arguments exist for both the circulation or pattern designations so instead we list this as an optional coin for collectors to decide if they wish to add this to a Mexican coin type set. Additionally, total mintage and circulation figures have not been validated at the time of this writing so total mintages remain listed as unkown.
Another interesting observation is the title of Atlan listed on the coin. The correct word that should have been minted on the coin is Aztlan. Aztlan is the mythical island homeland from which the Mexica originated from. Mexica is what the Aztecs were referred to after the migration from Aztlan to the Valley of Mexico. The boat design on the coins reverse is representative of that migration
The obverse design features the Mexican coat of arms, an eagle clutching a snake while it perches on a prickly pear cactus. On the outer periphery is the phrase “ESTADOS UNIDOS MEXICANOS” or as translated to English “United Mexican States”.
The reverse design features a boat image. Below the design is the word “ATLAN”, the denomination “$1000” and the mint mark “Mo” for the Mexico City Mint.
We have measured and weighed several examples of Atlan coins and there seems to be a slight variation. Coin diameter varied from 21.91mm to 22mm while coin weight varied from 4.6 grams to 4.79 grams. We can only assume the quality control is less on pattern coins versus true circulation business strikes which would explain the variation seen to date.
General Market Notes
Though the total mintage is unknown coins can be easily located but they do carry a premium price in comparison to other modern coins made of base metals.