The colón which was named after Christopher Columbus, (also known as Cristóbal Colón in Spanish) is the currency of Costa Rica. The plural is colones in Spanish, but English-speakers often say colons instead. The symbol for the colón is a c with two slashes. The US Dollar is also accepted unofficially in many places throughout Costa Rica. The colón was introduced in 1896, replacing the Costa Rican peso at par. The colón is divided into 100 centimos, although, between 1917 and 1919, coins were issued using the name centavo for the 1/100 subunit of the peso. Because the colón replaced the peso at par, there was no immediate need for new coins in 1896. In 1897, gold 2, 5, 10 and 20 colones were issued, followed by silver 50 centimos, and followed by cupro-nickel 2 centimos in 1903 and silver 5 and 10 centimos in 1905. The 5 and 10 centimos bore the initials G.C.R., indicating that they were issues of the government.