United States Mint Unveils First Five Coins in America the Beautiful QuartersTM Program
WASHINGTON - The United States Mint unveiled the designs for the first five quarters in the America the Beautiful Quarters Program in a special ceremony today at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. United States Mint Director Ed Moy treated special guests and the media to a first look at the new designs, which celebrate the spectacular natural wonders that are found in the United States' national parks, forests, shores and other national sites. Other speakers included Congressman Mike Castle, one of the lead co-sponsors of the legislation; United States Treasurer Rosie Rios; Harris Sherman, Under Secretary of Agriculture for Natural Resources and the Environment; and Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar.
"Through America the Beautiful Quarters coins, we will be transported to national parks, forests and wildlife refuges, part of a vast public land legacy belonging to all Americans-natural and cultural treasures protected for our recreation, relaxation, education, inspiration and transformation," Director Moy said.
"This program holds real value in helping Americans of all ages learn more about U.S. history, landmarks and culture through highlighting 56 national parks and sites throughout our country and territories in a series of quarters that will live on for generations," said Treasurer of the United States Rosie Rios.
The first quarter in the series, which honors Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas, will be released into circulation on April 19, with an official launch ceremony in Hot Springs on April 20. It will be followed by quarters honoring Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming (June); Yosemite National Park in California (July); Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona (September); and Mount Hood National Forest in Oregon (November).
America the Beautiful Quarters Designs
The image on the reverse (tails side) of the Hot Springs National Park quarter depicts the façade of the Hot Springs National Park headquarters building with a fountain in the foreground. The headquarters was built in the Spanish colonial revival style and completed in 1936. The National Park Service emblem is featured to the right of the door. Inscriptions are HOT SPRINGS, ARKANSAS, 2010 and E PLURIBUS UNUM.
The image on the reverse of the Yellowstone National Park quarter features the Old Faithful geyser with a mature bull bison in the foreground. Inscriptions are YELLOWSTONE, WYOMING, 2010 and
E PLURIBUS UNUM.
The image on the reverse of the Yosemite National Park quarter depicts the iconic El Capitan, which rises more than 3,000 feet above the valley floor and is the largest monolith of granite in the world. Inscriptions are YOSEMITE, CALIFORNIA, 2010 and E PLURIBUS UNUM.
The image on the reverse of the Grand Canyon National Park quarter features a view of the granaries above the Nankoweap Delta in Marble Canyon near the Colorado River. Marble Canyon is the northernmost section of the Grand Canyon. Granaries were used for storing food and seeds (A.D. 500). Inscriptions are GRAND CANYON, ARIZONA, 2010 and E PLURIBUS UNUM.
The image on the reverse of the Mount Hood National Forest quarter depicts a view of Mount Hood with Lost Lake in the foreground. Inscriptions are MOUNT HOOD, OREGON, 2010 and E PLURIBUS UNUM.
Each coin in the series features a common obverse (heads side) with the 1932 portrait of George Washington by John Flanagan, which has been restored to bring out subtle details and the beauty of the original model. Inscriptions are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, LIBERTY, IN GOD WE TRUST and QUARTER DOLLAR.
"Today we celebrate the breathtaking landscapes and natural heritage of ‘America the Beautiful,' by commemorating our country's most treasured places on our currency," Secretary Salazar said. "When people come across one of these quarters, they will see the word 'Liberty' on one side and a national park, refuge, or forest on the other. They will know that Americans cherish these things dearly and desire to share both the freedom and the beauty of our land with all who likewise cherish them."
America the Beautiful Quarters Program Overview
The United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters Program is a multi-year initiative authorized by the America's Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 (Act)(Public Law 110-456). The Act directs the United States Mint to mint and issue 56 circulating quarters with reverse designs emblematic of a national park or other national site in each state, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories-the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. The quarters will be released sequentially each year through 2021 in the order in which the featured site was first established as a national park or national site. The designs on the reverse of the United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters will rotate five times each year through 2020, with the final coin being released in 2021.
For more information on the America the Beautiful Quarters Program, please visit http://www.americathebeautifulquarters.gov.
Collecting the America the Beautiful Quarters
The quarters will be legal tender coinage, issued by the United States Mint and available in general circulation.
"Coin collectors, adventure enthusiasts and patriotic Americans will look forward to the design announcement and release of new coins each year," said Director Moy. "More than 147 million people collected the 50 State Quarters coins, and we expect interest in the America the Beautiful Quarters to continue."
Customers may sign-up online to receive the United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters products each year through several new subscription programs. To find out more information or to place subscription orders, visit the United States Mint Web site at http://www.usmint.gov/catalog or call 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468).
Additionally, under the United States Mint America the Beautiful Silver Bullion CoinTM Program, the United States Mint will mint and issue silver bullion coins that are duplicates of the quarter-dollar coins. The bullion coins, to be struck in .999 fine silver, will be three inches in diameter and weigh five ounces.
Learning through the America the Beautiful Quarters Program
The America the Beautiful Quarters Program will also introduce a brand new lesson plan format with a series of interactive educational tools for students from kindergarten through high school. Students will be able to take a virtual visit to the national sites highlighted each year and have the opportunity to learn about forest communities and the plants and animals that live in our national parks and sites. For more information about America the Beautiful Quarters Program educational resources, please visit http://www.usmint.gov/?action=educators.
"The America the Beautiful Quarters Program promises a fresh infusion of energy and creativity for the Mint's Education Initiative. The program's commitment to education complements Treasury's ongoing efforts to bring the fundamentals of economics and finance into the classroom to help educate tomorrow's consumers and build a stronger economy," continued Rios.
About the United States Mint
Created by Congress in 1792, the United States Mint is the Nation's sole manufacturer of legal tender coinage. Its primary mission is to produce an adequate volume of circulating coinage for the Nation to conduct its trade and commerce. The United States Mint also produces proof, uncirculated and commemorative coins; Congressional Gold Medals; and gold, silver and platinum precious metal coins.