In honor of the Centennial of Independence received from Spain, the Mexico City Mint issued a new 1921 coin design based on the Angel of Independence monument located in Mexico City. The design was used on a new silver 2 Pesos coin and gold 50 Pesos coin.
As beautiful as the design was the silver 2 pesos would remain a one year only issue while the gold 50 pesos coin would continue to use the design until its series end in 1947. The design would reappear on silver coinage in 1982 for the silver bullion Libertad series.
Angel of Independence Monument
The monument was erected in 1910 to celebrate the centennial of Mexico’s declaration of independence from Spain in 1810, though Spain would not officially grant independence until 1821.
The actual Angel of Independence monument is gold in color giving it the nickname “Golden Angel”. The statue sits atop a column that is engraved with the names of famous revolutionaries while at the base are additional ornate statues and historical figures.
The golden angel was inspired by the Greek statue of Nike found on the island of Samothrace and is often referred to as the “Winged Victory of Samothrace”.
In 1929 an eternal flame was added to honor the revolutionary war heroes. The remains of 12 heroes of the Independence were later relocated there after the monument was remade into a mausoleum. The heroes at the mausoleum are; Miguel Hidalgo, José María Morelos, Vicente Guerrero, Don Francisco Javier Mina, Don Nicolas Bravo, Ignacio Allende, Juan Aldama, Mariano Matamoros, Mariano Jimenez, Vicente Guerrero, Leona Vicario, and Andres Quintana Roo.
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 the Angel of Independence with the volcanoes Popocatépetl and Iztaccihuatl in the background. To the left of the design is the denomination "50 PESOS" and to the right is the actual gold weight "37.5 Gr ORO PURO" (37.5 gr Pure Gold). Beneath the design is the dual date of current year of mintage and "1821" the year of Independence.
General Market Notes
The key to the series is the 1931 issue while the semi-key is the 1921 issue. As a footnote, according to Krause Publications, from 1949 to 1972 a total of 3,975,654 pieces were re-struck with the date 1947.