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1871, 100 centavos = 8 reales = 1 peso.
1927, 100 centavos de quetzal = 1 quetzal.

A Spanish dominion until 1821, Guatemala was conquered by Pedro de Alvarado in 1523. The postal service was originally directed from Mexico but in 1620 the postal concession was formally auctioned to Pedro Crespo Suarez, who became the Guatemalan Postmaster. A monthly postal route was started to Oaxaca in 1748, and the posts returned to the Spanish Crown in 1767. First postal markings were introduced in 1770 at the former capital of Guatemala, now known as Antigua.

Guatemala's independence from Spain in 1821 made little difference to the postal service. A network of agents who forwarded the international mail was created before the formation of the UPU in 1874. A mailboat service on a monthly basis was introduced on the east coast in 1851 and on the west coast in cooperation with other nations. This service ran down the coast to connect with the railway at Panama.

On 1 July 1823 Guatemala, after a brief union with Mexico, became part of the United Provinces of Central America, which comprised all of modern Central America except the Mosquito Coast of Nicaragua; the capital was Guatemala City. The union broke up in 1838. Full independence was declared in March 1847.

Guatemala still lays claim to Belize (q.v.), where a small British garrison is stationed

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