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The Banknotes of North America: Aruba

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Aruba is an island in the southern Caribbean Sea that is slightly larger than Washington D.C., in total area and with a population of about 119,428. Originally claimed for Spain by Amerigo Vespucci and Alonso de Ojeda in 1499, the island became property of The Netherlands in 1636, which – despite some foreign occupations over the years – it remains today. In 1986 it seceded from the Netherlands Antilles to become semi-autonomous, but in 1990 it stopped its own progress to becoming independent. The capital of Aruba is Oranjestad (meaning “Orange Town”). A member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Aruba uses the “Florin” monetary system.

Below are the separate issues of banknotes from Aruba:

1986 Banco Central di Aruba issue consisting of 5, 10, 25, 50,100 Florin, printed by Johan Enschede, Netherlands.

The numerals and denomination text are the only differences between the designs of each denomination.

The face of the note depicts the flag of Aruba at left, and Palm Beach’s Aruba Sheraton Hotel, Aruba Caribbean Hotel, and windmill at Oranjestad in the center. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions, https://www.ha.com. Click image to enlarge.

The back of the note depicts the arms of Aruba at center. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions, https://www.ha.com. Click image to enlarge.

1990 Centrale Bank van Aruba issues consist of 5, 10, 25, 50, and 100 Florin and were printed by Johan Enschede, Netherlands. The watermark is a stylized tree.

The face of each note depicts a different animal with the Papiamento (a Portuguese-based creole language spoken in the Dutch Caribbean) language and scientific names below (sea turtle on the 5, Indian conch on the 10, rattlesnake on the 25, burrowing owl on the 50, and frog on the 100) and the reverses all share the same design of pre-Columbian Aruban art, but each denomination uses different colored inks.

From top to bottom, the face of the 25 Florin note depicts a rattlesnake (Cascabel – Crotalus durissus unicolor), a burrowing owl (Shoco – Curicularia arubarsis) on the 50 Florin, and a Colombian four-eyed frog (Dori - Pleurodema brachyops) on the 100 Florin. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions, https://www.ha.com. Click image to enlarge.

The face depicts a red grouper fish (Mero - epinephelus morio). Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions, https://www.ha.com. Click image to enlarge.

An example of the pre-Columbian Aruban art on the reverses of these notes. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions, https://www.ha.com. Click image to enlarge.

The 1993 Centrale Bank van Aruba issues include denominations of 10, 25, 50, 100, and 500 Florin and were printed by Johan Enschede, Netherlands bearing a stylized tree as the watermark.

This issue only differs from the above by including "Wettig Betaalmiddel" (meaning “Legal Tender”) under Florin on the face of the note and including more security features overall.

2003-2012 Centrale Bank van Aruba issue consisting of 10, 25, 50, 100, 500 Florin and were printed by Johan Enschede, Netherlands, with a stylized tree as the watermark. This issue is similar to the above, only adding additional security features.

2019 Centrale Bank van Aruba issue consist of 10, 25, 50, 100, and 200 Florin. This issue has the central design of all denominations printed in a vertical format, the designs are all completely different from previous series with various animals on the faces and various scenes on the backs.

The face of the note depicts a Crested Caracara, and the back displays a barrel organ and a drum. Images courtesy of Bank Note Museum, http://www.banknote.ws. Click images to enlarge.

We look forward to seeing future issues of banknotes from Aruba!

Sources:

Currency