VarietyPlus » Philippines Under U.S. Sovereignty

Philippines Under U.S. Sovereignty

During the Spanish-American War of 1898, U. S. Army troops occupied Manila in the Spanish possession of the Philippine Islands. This archipelago was ceded to the USA the following year under the Treaty of Paris, and it would remain under administration of the United States for nearly 50 years. This was not what the educated middle class of native Filipinos anticipated after driving out the Spanish and declaring their independence, and an armed insurrection against the occupying Americans began almost immediately. Conventional fighting ended in 1901 with the capture of rebel leader Emilio Aguinaldo, but guerilla war continued for another several years.

One of the first tasks facing the new American civil government was to establish a useful and stable currency to replace the inadequate remainders of Spanish-Philippine issues. Beginning in 1903, an entirely new coinage was struck at the mints in Philadelphia and San Francisco that was legally exchangeable at the rate of two Philippine pesos to the American dollar. This was accompanied by silver certificate notes that circulated extensively alongside the coins. Each coin carried the dual identities FILIPINAS and UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Denominations ranged from the bronze half- and one-centavo pieces, to the copper-nickel five-centavos coin and, finally, to the silver 10-, 20-, 50-centavos and peso.

The rising price of silver in 1905-06 required that the original standards for the silver pieces be adjusted. Starting with the production of 1907, all silver coins were reduced in both size and fineness. The peso was reduced from .900 fine to .800, while the fractional pieces were further reduced to .750 fine silver.

Production of this coinage was transferred to the new Manila Mint in 1920 (mintmark M), and production continued there until interrupted by Japan’s invasion of the islands in 1941. When American and Filipino troops began to retake The Philippines in 1944, they brought with them a new coinage of the pre-war standard struck at the Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco Mints. These bore the Commonwealth of the Philippines reverse adopted in 1937, and America kept its promise of 1935 to grant the islands complete independence on July 4, 1946.

NGC will recognize most varieties of USA-Philippines coinage as detailed in Lyman L. Allen’s book U.S./Philippine Coins. These are attributed by Allen numbers for the varieties NGC determines are important and that may be accurately identified from the Allen reference. Since this book is not completely illustrated, NGC reserves the right to reject certain Allen varieties. Those recognized appear within the table below.

Denom.MS/PFDateFee*NGC LabelAllen
1CMS1908 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-2.06a  
1CMS1908 S/S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-2.06b  
1CMS1917/6 S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-2.15a  
1CMS1917/8 S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-2.15c  
1CMS1918 S USA-PHIL$15LARGE S Allen-2.16a
5CMS1945/5 S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-6.06a  
10CMS1907 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-8.02a  
10CMS1912 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-8.08a  
10CMS1944 D/D USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-9.04a  
10CMS1945 D/D USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-9.05a  
10CMS1945 D DDR USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-9.05b  
10CMS1945 D DDR USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-9.05c  
20CMS1913 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-11.09a  
20CMS1916 S USA-PHIL$15TILTED 6 ALLEN-11.12a  
20CMS1929 2/2/2 M USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-11.19b  
20CMS1929/9 M USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-11.19c  
20CMS1944 D/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-12.04a  
20CMS1944 D/D USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-12.04b  
50CMS1917 S USA-PHIL$15BROKEN 7 ALLEN-14.06a  
50CMS1944 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-15.01a  
50CMS1945 S/S USA-PHIL$15ALLEN-15.02a  

* In order to have the above varieties requiring the $15 fee designated by NGC, VarietyPlus service must be requested at time of grading. VarietyPlus service is also available for coins already encapsulated by NGC. For coins where the fee column is blank, no VarietyPlus charge is required to have your coin designated during grading. For coins marked $15, a $15 surcharge applies to the tier fee during grading, or a $15 fee applies to have the VarietyPlus designation added to any coin already graded and encapsulated by NGC.
Allen, Lyman L., Tom Culhane, Editor. U.S./Philippine Coins., Union, NJ, 2012