Bohol Emergency Banknotes

IJsselstein, Sunday, 2 October 2005 05:34:24

In the Second World War, the Japanese invaded the Philippines just hours after bombing Pearl Harbor. Rather than surrender, some soldiers and civilians sought refuge in the hills and mountains, and even after the defeat of the Americans continued to fight a guerrilla war against the invaders.

During the Japanese occupation, emergency banknotes where issued by muncipalities or provinces across the Philippines, to be redeemed after the war. Due to the scarcity of materials, many such notes printed with plates made from lead salvaged from old batteries, using emulsion paint for ink and paper from old paper bags. As a result, the notes are often very faint and in a bad condition. These notes where considered illegal by the Japanese, and if you where captured with such notes in your possession you could be punished by public humiliation and then death. Still many Filipinos would rather risk death than use the invasion money issued by the Japanese.

In Bohol, emergency currency were issued by provincial officials in 1942 and 1943. Many local issues appeared at the same time, and these continued into 1944, and one even in 1945. Some municipal issues were usable in more than one community, as was specified on the notes themselves.

Provincial Issues

If available, you can click on the thumbnails to see a large version.

25 Centavos

50 Centavos

1 Peso

5 Pesos

10 Pesos

Municipal Issues

Issues are known of the following municipalities: Antequera, Balilihan, Bilar, Calape, Clarin, Jagna, Loay, Loboc, Loon, Maribojoc, Sevilla, Tubigon, and Ubay.


Antequera is located in the west central part of Bohol. Local currency was issued by the Antequera Change Board. The notes are among the crudest of all the municipal issues; most are just about identifiable, and it is the rare exception to find one with even a fairly clear text. Notable in this small series is the 30 centavos denomination, unmatched in any other issue of guerrilla notes.

The known denominations are 5, 10, 20, 30 and 50 Centavos.

50 Centavos


Calape lies on the west central coast of Bohol. The Calape Emergency Currency Board issued two distinct series of notes, but all are dated 1943. They have large center numerals on the face side. The Calape notes are the most widely available Bohol municipal notes.

First series

1 Centavo

Second series

5 Centavos

10 Centavos

20 Centavos


Jagna lies on the south east coast of Bohol, facing Mindanao.

5 Centavos

50 Centavos


Maribojoc lies on the south coast of Bohol, not far from the capital Tagbilaran.

10 Centavos

20 Centavos


Ubay lies on the north coast of Bohol.

50 Centavos

Further Reading...

Jeroen Hellingman