The 50 State Quarters program is the release of a series of commemorative coins by the United States Mint. Between 1999 and 2008, it is featuring each of the 50 individual U.S. states on unique designs for the reverse of the quarter and, by the passage of , 2009 will feature the District of Columbia and the nation's five territories.
The program was conceived as a means of creating a new generation of coin collectors, and in that it succeeded. The 50 State Quarters program became the most successful numismatic program in history, with roughly half of the U.S. population collecting the coins. The U.S. federal government so far has made a profit of $4.6 billion from collectors taking the coins out of circulation.
The statehood quarters program has become one of the most popular commemorative coin programs in United States history; the United States Mint has estimated that over one hundred million individuals have collected state quarters, either formally or informally.
On December 10, 2007, Puerto Rico-born Rep. José Serrano, D-NY, attached HR 392's language to the Omnibus Spending Bill that the House passed. The bill passed in the US Senate on September 6; President Bush signed the bill on December 26. The additional six coins to be minted in 2009 are expected to generate renewed interest in the series, generate over $400 million in additional revenue to the Treasury, and lead many publishers to produce new products to accommodate the additional six coins. HR 2764 also moves the "In God We Trust" from the edge to the obverse or reverse of the Presidential $1 Coin Program.
The 1997 act that authorized the statehood quarter program had originally provided that if the federal district, or any of the territories or commonwealths, became states before 2009, that new state would get a quarter.
|Color||Year||1st release||2nd release||3rd release||4th release||5th release||6th release|
|2000||Massachusetts||Maryland||South Carolina||New Hampshire||Virginia|
|2001||New York||North Carolina||Rhode Island||Vermont||Kentucky|
|2006||Nevada||Nebraska||Colorado||North Dakota||South Dakota|
|2009||District of Columbia||Puerto Rico||Guam||American Samoa||U.S. Virgin Islands||Northern Mariana Islands|
The District of Columbia submitted three different designs to the United States Mint for its quarter: one with the District's flag, one depicting Benjamin Banneker, and one depicting Duke Ellington. The District suggested that each of the three designs include either the words "Taxation Without Representation" or "No Taxation Without Representation", both of which refer to the District's efforts to obtain full representation in Congress. The Mint rejected both messages, because of its prohibition against printing controversial inscriptions on coins. The Mint said that, while it takes no stance on the voting rights of the District, it considers the messages controversial because there is currently "no national consensus" on the issue. In response, the District revised its designs for the quarter, replacing the text with "Justice for All", which is the District's motto. The District also changed the design with the District's flag to a design depicting Frederick Douglass. Following a vote by District residents, Mayor Adrian Fenty recommended that the Mint select the design that depicts Duke Ellington, while expressing the District's "disappointment" that the Mint had disallowed the phrase "Taxation Without Representation".
While mintage totals of the various designs vary widely – Virginia quarters are almost four times more abundant than Maine issues — none of the regular circulating issues are rare enough to become valuable investments. Since, on the average, 16% fewer coins will be minted for each territory and DC than for each state (6 different coins in a year instead of five), the last six coins of the series are expected to be slightly more valuable as collectibles than the states quarters.
There was, however, a measure of collector interest and controversy over die errors in the Wisconsin quarter. Some designs feature corn without a smaller leaf, others feature a small leaf pointing upwards, and still others have the leaf bending down. A set of all three quarters from the Philadelphia mint sold on eBay in February 2005 for $300, and have since seen significant increases.
A 2005 Minnesota double die quarter, as well as a 2005 Minnesota quarter with extra trees (another die error), have both triggered numismatic interest. An unusual die break on some 2005 Kansas quarters created a humpback bison. Relatively more common are Kansas quarters sporting the motto "IN GOD WE RUST".
POLICE OFFICER TRACED COLLECTING LOVE TO A NEW PROFESSION COLLECTOR OPENED SHOP TO CONTINUE HIS MEMORABILIA INTEREST.(VIRGINIA BEACH BEACON)
Mar 26, 2000; Twenty-eight years ago, Norfolk police officer Larry Robbins decided to turn his lifelong hobby of collecting into a new career....