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News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

2010 America the Beautiful Quarters

The United States Mint has unveiled the final design selections for the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters. The unveiling comes after somewhat of a slow start for the new quarter series, which will present 56 different national parks and national sites from across America.

Candidate designs had first been available around September 2009, when the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) had performed their reviews and issued recommendations. For each location, the United States Mint generated three to four different candidate designs for each quarter.

In all cases, the final designs selected by the Secretary of the Treasury had been recommended by either the CFA, CCAC, or both. The final designs for each 2010 America the Beautiful Quarter are presented below.


Hot Springs National Park Quarter

The Hot Springs Quarter presents a view of the facade of the building headquarters with a fountain in the foreground of the design. The CFA had recommended this design, but suggested that the small National Park Service sign shown beside the door be removed. The CCAC had recommended a different design, which had presented a view of the same fountain from a different viewpoint without the building.


Yellowstone National Park Quarter

The Yellowstone Quarter features the famous Old Faithful geyser with bison in the foreground and background. This was the design recommended by the CCAC. The CFA had rejected all presented candidate designs for poor quality, suggesting that additional source material should be considered.


Yosemite National Park Quarter

The Yosemite Quarter depicts a view of El Capitan, a prominent granite cliff that rises over 3,000 feet above the valley floor. The CCAC had recommended this design, commenting on the simplicity and ruggedness of the image. The CFA had favored a view of the half dome rock formation, but suggested the design should be further developed.


Grand Canyon National Park Quarter

The Grand Canyon Quarter shows a canyon level view of the granaries above the Nankoweap Delta. Both the CFA and CCAC had recommended this design, although the CFA had recommended some modifications to the design as presented. It appears that none of the suggested modifications were done to the original.


Mount Hood National Forest Quarter

The Mount Hood Quarter features a view of Mount Hood with Lost Lake in the foreground. Both the CFA and CCAC had recommended this design. Both had lauded the design for its composition, simplicity, and the artistry of its imagery.

Besides revealing the final designs, the US Mint also provided more information on the numismatic products to be offered and the first launch ceremony.

Numismatic products will include the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Set priced at $14.95 and the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set priced at $32.95. Each quarter will be sold in 100-coin bags from either the Philadelphia or Denver Mint priced at $35.95 or a two roll set priced at $32.95. The five quarters will also be included in the full 2010 Proof Set, 2010 Mint Set, and 2010 Silver Proof Set.

Notably missing from the product line up are the 1,000-coin bags from each mint and the First Day Coin Covers. I think that both of these products will be missed.

With newly released coins becoming more difficult to acquire through circulation channels, the 1,000-coin bags presented a useful opportunity to obtain the coins in bulk, albeit at a premium. Last year, 1,000-coin bags were available for each release, priced at $309.95 each.

The First Day Coin Covers would have been well suited to the subject matter of the series. Last year's DC & US Territories Coin Covers had featured beautiful photographs from each location covering the full size of the envelope. The use of colorful photographs was an improvement from the format of the previous 50 State Quarters Coin Covers, which had used a relatively plain common design for all releases. The US Mint could have continued the use of photographs quite nicely for the America the Beautiful Quarters.

The Hot Springs National Park Quarter will be released into circulation on April 19, 2010. On the same date, the US Mint will begin sales of the 100-coin bags and two roll sets containing the quarter. The launch ceremony will take place one day following on April 20, 2010.

The remaining 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters will be released in June (Yellowstone), July (Yosemite), September (Grand Canyon), and November (Mount Hood). The exact dates for each release and launch ceremony have not yet been provided.

On a final note, the US Mint has created a website specifically for the new quarter series. I think this was a great idea, as information on specific programs can sometimes be difficult to track down on the Mint's main website. This new site will hopefully help the US Mint to promote and generate more awareness of the new program.

Today's ceremonies and press releases had made mention of the fact that 147 million people collected the 50 State Quarters (almost one out of every two people in America). There will no doubt be some drop off in the number who collect the America the Beautiful Quarters. Time will tell just how much.

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42 Comments:

At March 24, 2010 at 10:42 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael, maybe you can use your influence to get the Mint to reconsider issuing First-Day Coin Covers for these quarters. I personally enjoy collecting them that way, getting an uncirculated coin from each Mint struck on the first day, complete with a nice-looking photograph of the subject depicted. I'd still buy them even if the price was raised to $15.95 each like the Presidential series is going to be this year. With such a low intrinsic value (.50 cents plus a postage stamp), surely these would be good money-makers for the Mint!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 10:59 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there any news on when the 5 ounce silver quarters will be available?

 
At March 24, 2010 at 11:52 AM , Blogger Lasloo said...

I, too, would love if they continued the first day coin covers. The whole idea of first day coin covers has become a recent collecting obsession of mine. And as mentioned, the photos used on the D.C. and Territories FDCCs were outstanding!! And thus, the AB program seems to be PERFECT for FDCCs. Oh, well... anyone out there willing to make their own, and travel to each place they release them in and get the envelope stamped? :-)

 
At March 24, 2010 at 11:57 AM , Blogger Michael said...

No new information on the 5 ounce silver bullion quarters.

The last time frame provided for release was late summer or early fall.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 11:58 AM , Blogger Lasloo said...

BTW, my wife and I did happen to be able to go to the ceremony today. I think technically it was a media-only event, but when we arrived and asked if we could just come in and watch, they just asked for our names and let us in.

There was a nice set up, a video in the beginning, followed by five speakers. Noone said anything of consequence, though Dayton Duncan (the co-filmmaker of the National Parks documentary he made with Ken Burns) was probably the most inspiring. He mentioned how unique the US was to actually set aside large swaths of land for the use of the population at large. In the past, only royalty would have access to (or eventually takeover) places as beautiful as some of these areas.

I have to admit, I wasn't completely on board with this new coin series when it was introduced. But, I'm starting to get excited now. I came into the coin collecting thing (in a serious manner) a year or so into the 50-states quarter program... so, I missed some of the initial hoopla. I kinda like being here at the start of this effort.

I think this one will fun!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 12:01 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Grand Canyon quarter looks the best to my eye...but then we are talking about the GRAND Canyon. Very Impressive views.

Maybe I like it because I live in Arizona.

Goldfingers

 
At March 24, 2010 at 2:16 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope these quarters look as good in real time as the drawings. If so I will get the silver set. The presidential coins are always a let down. The drawings look fantastic but the product falls way short.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 6:02 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only one that interests me is the grand canyon as well. Poor choice of designs Moy.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 6:05 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought that Communist countries routinely took over all the land so no person can own any. So it is not really unique to the US that our government controls so much.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 6:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there are no official First-Day Coin Covers, then the Mint should make sure that the coins contained in the bags they sell directly to collectors are from the first day of mintage. That way, Lasloo's idea of making your own first day coin covers by getting stamps cancelled on the first day of issue at the park would be possible, without having to sacrifice the knowledge that the coins in them are from the first day of mintage.

Obviously, we could not travel to all of the locations to get stamps cancelled on that day, but if we networked with each other we could probably be able to come up with a lot of people who could get them from their local areas. For example, I could get some for the IL Shawnee National Forest since I am a Southern Illinois resident.

The Mint really needs to re-instate the official First Day Coin Covers, though. They would be so awesome for this series!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 7:01 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd be happy to go to the Grand Canyon if this would help the effort...
I need to know what day you would want them cancelled to make sure that I will be available.

Goldfingers

 
At March 24, 2010 at 7:21 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder how we could find out which post office the Mint would have used to cancel the first-day stamps for the covers?

Man, I wanted those SO bad! Why change the format to nice-looking photos for the Territories series, only to discontinue them right before the start of a series that lends itself to that so well?

Michael, please talk some sense to the Mint regarding this issue! I think if they stuck to the 20,000 limit for the covers, most of them would sell and the Mint would make a lot of money on them!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 7:31 PM , Blogger Lasloo said...

I've never made a FDCC myself yet, though it would be interesting to do so. However, I have made first day cent rolls when the Mint released each of the 2009 cent designs. For those who can attend the first-day-of-release ceremonies, you might want to look into creating those for yourself as well as to sell. I wrote something on CoinUpdateNews on how I did mine.

However, first day coin covers might be a different ball of wax. And though, I've never created a FDCC, here's my initial thoughts on how to make one.

So, the first thing to do, I presume, is to find the right kind of envelope. Probably get a envelope with a large flap that covers most of the back. Print a good picture of the park on the front, and on the flap-side, print some info about the park and quarter design (probably taken from the Mint's website).
Not sure what the right coin holder for this is. Maybe an AirTite inside one of their display cards. Maybe the CoinEdge holders I've seen. Either way the holder needs to be glued/held-in-place to some piece of cardboard (or display card) that then fits into the envelope with appropriate holes cut out where the coin pokes out.

As to the stamp and cancellation, in a perfect world, it would be nice to get it cancelled at the park itself on the coin's release day. However, its probably not too bad to get it cancelled at any post office on the day of release. The important thing here is to have a legitimate USPS cancellation on the envelope on the day of the release. However, as has been suggested, if people local to each event could make one, it would be fun to trade them around.

As to whether the coin itself is from the first day of mintage... I wouldn't worry too much about that. Only the Mint can really can guarantee that, and if they aren't making FDCCs, I don't see any real way of making this happen. But as long as the envelope is cancelled with the first day of release, you probably don't need to worry about the day of mintage of the quarters you use. As long as its the right quarters ( P & D ) and its uncirculated.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 7:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those are some good ideas, Lasloo. It would make a good alternative to official covers from the Mint.

It probably would have helped our cause if the Territories covers had sold better. Sales have dropped off quite a bit, and it appears that none of them are going to sell their maximum mintages prior to June 30th (which is very likely the date that sales of them will end, if the Mint sticks to past procedure.)

The funny thing is, though the covers are seemingly unpopular while available from the mint, once they are taken off-sale they seem to double or even triple in price, or sometimes even higher. For a while, people were paying nearly $200 each for the Wyoming and Utah covers of 2007! I was kicking myself over that, since I had sold all 25 of my extras for the $25-$30 range a few months before. Ouch!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 8:16 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We already have the state quarters, why do we need to repeat it with this series which is just about the same?

 
At March 24, 2010 at 9:08 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Question: Why does anyone here feel that Michael has anymore clout with the Mint than they do? The guy is busy keeping you informed. I'm quite amazed that, what I assume are adults, want someone else to champion their numismatic desires @ the Mint. Have your mom's help you draft a letter if you need help. But know that there is a reason the Mint doesn't have a suggestion or contact e-mail address. They don't want your input.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 4:43 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm shocked and disappointed the Yosemite coin doesn't feature Half Moon!

 
At March 25, 2010 at 5:59 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think they were trying to get a minority point of interest on the Yosemite quarter.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 6:25 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Grand Canyon is OK, but the only real winner in this first group clearly will be the Yellowstone. Americans and foreign collectors are facinated with any coin that features a Bison or Buffalo. A slam dunk. No matter what the others look like, there has to be only one to get top shelf status, and that only is the Yellowstone.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 6:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i really like the grand canyon. i was hoping that they would have used a different view of it. maybe something more inspired from thomas moran or a view showing the split at the little colorado. something that one who sees it, they would know it IS the grand canyon without reading the coin. the only problem if it did not say grand canyon, i would just think it is a view looking up at a canyon wall from the bottom of a river.

if i do purchase any of the bullion, it would probably be the grand canyon.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 6:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i really like the grand canyon. i was hoping that they would have used a different view of it. maybe something more inspired from thomas moran or a view showing the split at the little colorado. something that one who sees it, they would know it IS the grand canyon without reading the coin. the only problem if it did not say grand canyon, i would just think it is a view looking up at a canyon wall from the bottom of a river.

if i do purchase any of the bullion, it would probably be the grand canyon.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 6:39 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael, Please be advised! You like myself and others WANT the 2010 American Eagle's. I have spoke with the US Mint and they are offering the PROOF and UNCIRCULATED on a Subscription ONLY basis....Its what they told me! and said I would receive an email letting me know 1 week befor charging my card and shipping. You can access the 2010 American Eagle Subscription at the US MINT website and click subscriptions link and scroll to bottom of page and you will see the American Eagles sign-up. I hope they hold true to it. Just thought I would share this :)

 
At March 25, 2010 at 6:51 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael has ways to contact the Mint that we don't. After all, he manages to get the Mint sales reports the same as Numismatic News does, only he publishes them for us to see a LOT faster!

I have an e-mail address for the numismatic accounting division, and a phone number too. Both of those go to Washington D.C., NOT the fulfillment center in Indiana! However, I'm thinking I could not trust the accounting division to forward product line concerns to the right party!

 
At March 25, 2010 at 10:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's interesting that Yellowstone Nationl Park, the first and most famous national park wasn't the first of the series but Roosevelt's getaway was.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 10:02 AM , Anonymous Falcon said...

I have said this several times. I think the new quarter designs would look alot better on the back of the Kennedy half dollar. The larger area of the coin would help the art details show up better. Add it onto a FFC and I'm sure it would be a hit.
Having the half dollar revived would increase mint profits while bringing new life into a low mintage coin. I'm tired of all the new quarters. The mint should do something different and put the Kennedy half dollar into good use.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 10:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the poster @ March 25, 2010 6:39 AM..Thanks for the heads up ..Hopefully they can deliver this year:)

 
At March 25, 2010 at 10:50 AM , Blogger Lasloo said...

As per the subscription for the AEs, I know they had the subscription stuff up last year for the supposed 2009 and yet that didn't happen.

So, I wouldn't get too excited yet. Some of those subscription pages are there only because they were there last year, and its relatively simple to change it to say 2010 just in case they happen to actually make 2010 AEs.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 11:06 AM , Blogger dave said...

Michael - I know his is off topic, but can you do a report on the USM 2010 Platinum Proof set listed for release in August? Maybe there is no news just speculation. 'Set' would mean there is something more than just a one ounce coin. Maybe just a 1/2 oz. and 1 oz.? Any info on this? Thanks!

 
At March 25, 2010 at 12:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the mint striking more 2009 proof buffalo coins after it sold out? I thought that was against the law since it is 2010.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 1:08 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Declaring the coin "sold out" was probably an error, or a deliberate attempt to get the remaining inventory sold more quickly.

There can't be many left. In fact, it might already be sold out for real by now, and the Mint is just taking backup orders in case earlier ones don't work out.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 2:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

On another subject ... I just happen to notice that one Harrison roll US Mint wrapped roll was auctioned for over $280 and another one for over $270 (P&D) on Ebay. Oooooh to turn back the hands of time - the only time I missed a president at the Mint was the Harrison. Unbelievable a roll would go for that price!

 
At March 25, 2010 at 3:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's even more unbelievable is the fact that John Tyler had the exact same number of rolls sold as Harrison, and you can't even sell those at original cost! Unfortunately I DID buy those! I can't win.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 7:11 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, as people check their coins and see they may not be 70's the return them to the mint. Any coins you may get towards the end are other people's rejects. The best bet is to buy early and avoid the sub qualities.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 8:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Mint just added the Millard Fillmore covers to the upcoming products section. The limit is 32,000 units. 32,000? Where did they come up with a weird number like that?

 
At March 26, 2010 at 6:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that the proof versions of the America the Beautiful Quarters have the potential to look really nice ... for instance the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon should really stand out ...

 
At March 26, 2010 at 9:13 PM , Blogger HBGuy said...

I recently received the Royal Canadian Mint's 2010 "Look Of The Games" 5-ounce silver coin. The detailing is exquisite with a theme that fills what is a really large surface area without appearing to be "busy".

I'm not sure how the dimensions of the US Mint's 5-ounce coins will compare but the designs of the National Park series should lend themselves very well to a 5-ounce silver coin. The Yosemite and Grand Canyon coins, in particular, should look terrific.

Why they have to be denominated as with a 25 cent face value, I have no idea. The RCM denominates its 5-ounce coins with a $50 face value. Go figure...

 
At March 27, 2010 at 6:18 AM , Anonymous Nikki Barnard said...

Maybe the CoinEdge holders I've seen. Either way the holder needs to be glued/held-in-place to some piece of cardboard (or display card) that then fits into the envelope with appropriate holes cut out where the coin pokes out.

 
At March 27, 2010 at 12:18 PM , Anonymous snarky said...

not another bison .. i love the original buffalo nickels but c'mon, we've had what - another nickel, two state quarters, a commem dollar reissue, a gold bullion reissue, and now this .. how about a jackalope?

also: grand canyon design is great, hot springs sux. HARD. others are mediocre. "Artistic Infusion" program = Artistic Confusion. Look at some of the designs other mints of the world are putting out - i'm embarassed for the U.S.

 
At March 28, 2010 at 7:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm hoping that since these designs are being rendered on silver instead of brass that the proofs will turn out well unlike the presidents whose drawings look great but when transferred to the brass look like crap. No 5 oz. proof in silver. Another missed opportunity for the mint.

 
At March 29, 2010 at 11:20 PM , Blogger Lasloo said...

For those interested, I created a quick page (through Google pages) describing my recent attempt at creating first day coin covers for the new Hot Spring National Park quarters. Its a quick and dirty site but I wanted to get it out to people ASAP in case others might be interested in making their own FDCCs as well.

Here's a link to the site:
http://sites.google.com/site/lasloo/home/creating-first-day-coin-covers

I've only had time to put some pictures and links up. I plan to put more up in the future and completely flesh out the how-to aspects of it all.

Michael, if you want to put something like this up on your other sites, I'm more than happy to do that as well. I just wanted a place to store some of the templates and stuff I was currently working on and thus a place for people to actively get the templates and use 'em.

 
At April 17, 2010 at 9:02 PM , Blogger Stacey said...

Putting the Grand Canyon on the tails side of a coin is like painting a replica of Da Vinci's Last Supper on the head of a pin ... read more at http://www.examiner.com/examiner/x-37185-Grand-Canyon-Hiking-Examiner~y2010m3d7-Grand-Canyon-depicted-on-side-of-a-coin

 
At June 21, 2010 at 9:14 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

EXCELLENT choice of design Moy. To all those who don't appreciate what you've got, check out these colored stuff. Ewww.

http://www.perthmint.com.au/catalogue/viewImage.aspx?ID=2492

 

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