Obverse Design The legend "SANTIAGO GARCIA" curves along the top. Horizontally across the bottom is the legend "COLON". Below "COLON" near the bottom edge is a small five-point star with a dot on either side. Above "COLON" is an ornament consisting of a fleur-de-li with two ornate branches. The token has denticles along the edge and a smooth plain raised edge.
Reverse Design In the center is a large "5". The word "CENTS" curves along the bottom of the token. On either side of the "5" is an ornate scroll ornament. The token has denticles along the edge and a smooth plain raised edge.
Metal White metal, probably copper-nickel. Weight 3.6 grams. Size and Shape Round, 20 mm in diameter.
Dates Issued Unknown. Probably issued in the 1880's.
Issuer Santiago Garcia.
Mintage Unknown.
Rarity Common. Manufacturer Attributed to the Scovil Manufactoring Company of Waterbury, CT by Ignacio Henao. Other Catalog Numbers Asociación Numismático's F-261 (photo), Eklund - plate #37 - #2387, Henkle's Colon #38, Henao's COM 512-1, Plumer page #8, Rulau's Col 34, Schimmel #13 (drawing), Wright #1425.
Varieties None known for Santiago Garcia. The same or a similar reverse is featured on at least four tokens, all of which are from Colon: C. Jackson, Henry de Lisser, Santiago Garcia and S. Soracco.
Function Merchant token.
Population Count Ten (10) specimens of this token in collector hands are known to me. Recent sales include:
  1. Auction sale on eBay on January 6, 2003 for $46.00 plus $4 shipping.
  2. Auction sale on eBay on February 19, 2001 for $62.01 plus $4 shipping.
  3. Auction sale on eBay on January 17, 2001 for $85.05 plus $3 shipping in condition VF to EF.

Colon was founded by the Panama Railroad Company in 1850 as the Atlantic terminus of the Panama Railroad. Later, Colon became the Atlantic terminus of the Panama Canal. The 1880's were a boom-time for Colon as the French attempt to build the Panama Canal was underway.

The surname GARCIA is a common name in Panama; nothing is known to me about the Colon merchant Santiago Garcia.


Santiago García era el dueño de algún establecimiento de comercio de Colón, en el estado de Panamá. La seña fue acuñada en los Estados Unidos por Scovil Manufactoring Company de Waterbury, Connecticut.