Franciso Franco was a Spanish general and head of state of Spain from October 1936 until his death in November, 1975. His formal title was Caudillo de Espana, por la gracia de Dios, meaning "Leader of Spain, by the grace of God". He is most infamous for his brutal, repressive dictatorship that resulted in mass killings, imprisonments and social and political upheaval.
From an early age, Franco proved to be a capable and talented, yet cruel military officer. He rose rapidly though the ranks. In 1913, as first lieutenant in an elite regiment of native Moroccan cavalry, Franco won a reputation for efficiency, dedication and having men shot for minor infractions of regulations. He became Europe's youngest Brigadier General at age 34. On Franco's tactics during the Spanish repression of Moroccan revolts in the 1920's, one of his soldiers wrote, "When (Franco) attacked, (his army) knew no limits to its vengeance. When it left a village, nothing remained but fires and the corpses of men, women and children."
Franco's far right Falange party, later to be consolidated as the National Movement, was allied with the fascist ideals of Germany's Adolf Hitler and Italy's Benito Mussolini. Upon Franco's seizing of power by a military coup, the Spanish Civil War began in July, 1936 and officially ended with Franco's victory in April, 1939, leaving an estimated 500,000 civilian dead from a combination of military assaults, aerial bombings and the starvation, overwork and executions of political prisoners. The persecution of political opponents, known as Republicans, continued until 1944. 30,000 children of political prisoners and suspected Republican sympathizers were removed from their parents and put up for adoption.
The Civil War left Spain's infrastructure and economy ruined. The population was depleted of another 500,000 political and economic refugees that streamed out of the country to find safety abroad. Franco introduced the ”Nuevo Estado” (New State), a system based on the fascist ideas of unquestioning loyalty, the denial of individual rights and freedoms, and state intervention in economic and social management. Spain became a cultural wilderness as artists and intellectuals were either forced into exile or silenced by censorship. The Nuevo Estado was legitimized when it received the support of the Catholic Church. At the end of WWII, Franco was seen as the "last surviving fascist dictator" of a country prepared to provide asylum to thousands of Nazi's fleeing justice.
Coins issued by the Kingdom of Spain - with Franco’s portrait: • KM790 - 10 Centimos - aluminum; 18 mm; 0.8 g; dated and issued 1959 • KM795 - 50 Centimos - aluminum; 20.1 mm; 1.1 g; dated 1966, issued 1967-75
• KM796 - 1 Peseta - aluminum-bronze; 21 mm; 3.4 g; dated 1966, issued 1967-75 • KM786 - 5 Pesetas - copper-nickel; 23 mm; 5.8 g; dated 1957, issued 1958-75 Coin issued by Franco’s nationalists during the civil war • KM753-25 Centimos-copper nickel-25mm; 7.0g; dated 1937; issued 1938 Obverse: inscription, date and arrow design, hole in center; Reverse: crowned shield, denomination and sprig, ctr. hole
Banknote issued by Franco’s Kingdom of Spain: • P-152(U) 100 Pesetas - 136 x 79 mm; images of Manuel de Falla / Moorish Royal Villa; dated 1970, issued 1974
Album Data: Album open measures: 11” x 7.5” Album folded measures: 5.5” x 7.5”
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