After the Civil War broke out in 1861, to pay for the war, the newly established Confederate government began to issue its own money as legal tender to citizens of the South. State governments also issued their own currencies, as did banks, insurance companies, and businesses. The Confederate government had no silver or gold to make coins, so it issued a vast array of paper currencies. Confederate paper money was like a loan – a promissory note or a promise to pay at a later time. The gamble was that if the South won the war, the money would be redeemable. The first note from the Government of the Confederate States of America was issued in April 1861. From then on, notes were issued on through 1864. Almost every Confederate note was hand signed and numbered.