GATLINBURG, TN. — The United States Mint launched the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program coin honoring Great Smoky Mountains National Park Jan. 29.
The reverse (tails) design depicts a log cabin that features architectural elements from several historic homes preserved within Great Smoky Mountains National Park with a segment of the lush green forest and a hawk circling above. This is the 21st coin in the America the Beautiful Quarters Program, the United States Mint’s multi–year initiative to honor our national parks and other national sites.
“This new quarter reflects the Nation’s continuing fascination with the beauty, diversity, and romantic mists of Great Smoky Mountains National Park,” said David Croft, acting associate director for Manufacturing at the United States Mint.
Hundreds of people were in attendance at the event that took place at the Gatlinburg Convention Center, in Gatlinburg, Tenn., one of the gateway cities to the 520,000–acre park. Participants included Great Smoky Mountains National Park Acting Superintendent Pedro Ramos, and local radio co–host Jay Adams, who served as master of ceremonies. Following the event, members of the public exchanged their currency for $10 rolls of newly minted Great Smoky Mountains National Park quarters.
“We are honored that our park is being commemorated in such a special way by the United States Mint,” said Ramos. “The collection of cabins protected within Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a resource worthy of national attention as is the legacy of the memories and feelings they evoke.”
The Federal Reserve Banks released Great Smoky Mountains National Park quarters produced for general circulation on Jan. 27. The same day, the United States Mint began accepting orders for collectible bags and rolls of coins with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park design struck at its facilities in Denver, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. The bureau is accepting orders for these products at its online catalog, http://www.usmint.gov/catalog, and at 1–800–USA–MINT (872–6468). Hearing– and speech–impaired customers with TTY equipment may order by calling 1–888–321–MINT (6468).
The bureau is administering the America the Beautiful Quarters Program in accordance with Public Law 110–456, the America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008. Each year until 2020, five new quarters will be released with reverse designs representing the honored national sites. The final coin in the program will be released in 2021. The quarters are being issued in the order in which the honored site was established.
The United States Mint was created by Congress in 1792 and became part of the Department of the Treasury in 1873. It is the Nation’s sole manufacturer of legal tender coinage and is responsible for producing circulating coinage for the Nation to conduct its trade and commerce. The United States Mint also produces numismatic products, including proof, uncirculated, and commemorative coins; Congressional Gold Medals; and silver and gold bullion coins. The United States Mint’s numismatic programs are self–sustaining and operate at no cost to the taxpayer.