The US quarter coin has been a staple of American currency since its creation in 1796. Originally designed to feature Lady Liberty on the obverse and an eagle on the reverse, the quarter has undergone numerous design changes over the years and is still in circulation today. From honoring the bicentennial of the country's founding to featuring national parks and monuments, the quarter has served as a tangible representation of America's cultural heritage.
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The Quarter’s All-American History
When it comes to coins, quarters have a fascinating history dating back to the Coinage Act of 1792. The Coinage Act established the United States Mint and authorized the production of various denominations of coins, including the half cent, cent, half dime, dime, quarter, half dollar, and dollar. The quarter was designed to fill a gap in the country's coinage system, as there was no coin worth 25 cents at the time. The first US quarters were minted in 1796.
One of the most notable predecessors to the US quarter coin was the Spanish 8-real coin, which was commonly used in the American colonies prior to the establishment of the United States Mint. The 8-real coin, which was also known as the "piece of eight," was worth 8 reales, or 1 real de a ocho. It was often cut into smaller denominations, such as halves and quarters, for use in everyday transactions.
The first US quarters were designed by Robert Scot, the Chief Engraver of the United States Mint. The obverse of the coin featured a bust of Lady Liberty facing to the right, with flowing hair and a small cap on her head. The reverse depicted an eagle with outstretched wings, perched on a branch and holding arrows and an olive branch in its talons.
In 1838, the US Mint introduced a new design for the quarter, known as the "Seated Liberty" design. This design was used for over 50 years, and became one of the most iconic collectible quarter designs in the history of US coinage. In 1892, Mint engraver Charles Barber designed the first Liberty Head quarter coin with a Liberty head design, as well as dimes and halves with the same obverse design. Known as “Barber Quarters,” these early quarters were primarily silver and produced from 1892 to 1916. The design was later changed to the Standing Liberty, produced from 1916 to 1930.
Since then, quarter coins have featured the profile of the first president, George Washington. As with dimes and halves, silver was primarily used to make quarters until 1964. Since 1999, its reverse has also served as a canvas for celebrating territories, national parks, and significant women.
Circulation and Availability
The US quarter coin is one of the most commonly used and heavily produced coins in the United States and continues to be widely circulated today. According to the United States Mint, over 28 billion quarters were produced in 2021 alone.
Since its creation in 1796, the US Mint has produced billions of collectible quarters in various designs, commemorating historical events and figures, national parks, and other cultural landmarks. As of 2021, the total number of quarters produced by the US Mint is estimated to be over 558 billion, making it one of the most widely circulated and iconic coins in the world. There is an array of collectible quarters coins available for hobbyists to find, and we’ve curated a diverse selection of quarters for sale to make collecting them easy.
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What types of quarters coins are there?
Over the years, the US Mint has produced many different types of quarters, each with their own unique design and historical significance. Some of the most notable types of quarters include the original Draped Bust quarter, the Seated Liberty quarter, the Barber quarter, the Standing Liberty quarter, and the Washington quarter.
What quarter coins are valuable?
There are many factors that can contribute to the value of a quarter, including its rarity, historical significance, and condition. Some of the most valuable quarters include the 1916 Standing Liberty quarter, the 1932-D Washington quarter, and the 1955 doubled die quarter.
What is the most valuable quarter coin worth?
The most valuable quarter is the 1916 Standing Liberty quarter, which can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in top condition. This coin features a design by Hermon Atkins MacNeil and is considered one of the most beautiful and historically significant coins in US history.
What quarters should I keep?
If you're interested in collecting quarter coins, there are many different types and designs that are worth keeping. Some collectors choose to focus on specific types of quarters, such as those featuring a particular design or mint mark. Others may choose to collect quarters from a particular time period or series. In general, quarters that are in excellent condition and have a low mintage are more likely to increase in value over time.