Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Friday, February 13, 2009

2010 Quarters

Update: View latest information on America the Beautiful Quarters.

The US Mint recently added a new section to their website with some information about the upcoming quarter series slated to begin in 2010.

H.R. 6184 America's Beautiful national parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 was signed into law on December 23, 2008. This legislation creates a new series of circulating commemorative quarters with rotating reverse designs. The designs will feature National Parks or National Sites from each of the 50 US States, 5 US Territories, and the District of Columbia.

The US Mint's new section provide some interesting details on the new series. I will summarize some of the new information posted.

- The Act requires that the Secretary of the Treasury select all 56 of the National Parks and Sites that will be featured on the coins within six months of the legislation's enactment. This gives him a deadline of September 19, 2009 to make all of the site selections which will be used for the next 11 years.

- The site selection process begins with the US Mint contacting the chief executive of each jurisdiction to request one preferred and three alternative sites within his or her jurisdiction. The US Mint reviews the recommendations and consults with the Secretary of the Interior. A final candidate list is provided to the Secretary of the Treasury for approval.

- Once the list of sites is approved, the full release schedule will be determined by the order each site was first established as a national site. Release of the new quarters will take place at a rate of five per year.

- The design selection process begins with the US Mint contacting the Federal entity responsible for the national site to request the appointment of a Federal official to serve as liaison. The US Mint will use source materials identified by the liaison to produce three to five candidate designs. These designs will be submitted to the Secretary of the Interior, the chief executive of the host jurisdiction, the CFA, and the CCAC for comment. The US Mint will make a final recommendation to the Secretary of the Treasury.

- Some basic guidelines for the site selection and design criteria are presented. Sites must be reasonably expected to translate into dignified designs of which citizens can be proud. Sites cannot be frivolous or inappropriate. Designs cannot include a head and shoulders portrait or a living person. Designs cannot include an outline or a map of the host jurisdiction. Notably, designs can be based on the same theme as a previously released State Quarter, as long as the design is not the same.

- The US Mint indicates that a portrait of George Washington will remain on the obverse of all of the quarters. The legislation did not provide guidance as to what should appear on the obverse of the coins. About two weeks ago, the CCAC had voted unanimously that consideration should be given to placing Theodore Roosevelt on the obverse. Has the US Mint already decided against this recommendation?

On a final note, the US Mint's new section on the series brought back a question that I have wondered since the series was first proposed: What will the series actually be called? State Quarters were easy enough to name, but the dual nature of the subject matter for the next series leave some room for interpretation.

The US Mint refers to the series as "New 2010 Quarters Program" on the navigation menu, which is likely only temporary. However, their page titles of the new section refer to the program as "National Sites Quarters Program." The URLs also include "NSQuartersProgram."

While the US Mint seems to have chosen the term "Sites," most articles and blogs have chosen the term "Parks." Which name will stick?

National Park Quarters
? National Sites Quarters? Sites and Parks Quarters?



At February 13, 2009 at 8:56 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Considering the fact not every state has a "National Park". I think the only choice is to call it "National Sites".

At February 13, 2009 at 9:49 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, so, after this set of quarters, what do you think would be a good set for the mint to produce? How about, Federal penitentiaries. :)

At February 13, 2009 at 10:24 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


At February 13, 2009 at 10:26 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Despite the fact that not all states have a "Park", I think this program will become known as the "Parks Quarters". "Sites" will be technically correct, but require too much explanation to the layman.

Kind of like how we all know they're called "cents", but everybody calls them "pennies" anyway... :-)

At February 13, 2009 at 11:23 AM , Blogger astroguy said...

Sarcasm warning: How about, "Overdone Quarters." Or, "Quarters Collectors are Sick of." Or, "How About a Good Solidly Designed Quarter?"

More seriously, though, I thought the state quarters were cool. After static designs for decades on the coins that actually circulated, it was a welcome change. But it's so overdone now! Choose a design, stick with it for 25 years, then let's get a new one. Let's get some good artwork going on them, too, instead of a "let's-crowd-as-much-as-we-can" design. Sigh.

At February 13, 2009 at 5:07 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Washington is not a required device for the obverse of the quarters, but I would be shocked to see a change to Teddy Roosevelt, in spite of the recommendation of the CCAC for two reasons:

1. Congress requires a Washington obverse after the National Parks' Quarters program is completed.

2. The last time the Mint tried to rotate a President off (Jefferson), Virginia got ticked off and Congress quickly legislated his permanent inclusion on the nickel.

My gut feeling is that we will never see a time where Washington, Lincoln, or Jefferson disappeared from their respective coins. I think that there would be a better shot at replacing Kennedy or Roosevelt, but even then, those are a long shot. And unfortunately, neither of those denominations were selected for the Parks' program.

Sacagawea is even money at being replaced at any time, in my mind.

At February 13, 2009 at 10:47 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keith, are you thinking about the redesign of the Monticello reverse? I don't think the mint considered removing Jefferson, but they were thinking of changing the reverse design after the "Westward Journey" series.

That's what prompted the legislative requirement for Monticello.

Here's the obligatory Wikipedia link

Of course, it also gave us the CCCA, so it wasn't all bad...

At February 14, 2009 at 3:04 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


The Mint held several forums in 2002 at national coin shows where discussion of coin redesign took place. The Director at the time, Henrietta Fore, was supportive of collectors and wanted to change designs of all US coins, moving away from Presidents on coins. The plan was to change the nickel first, then the dime, half dollar and cent. The dollar and quarter dollar were not considered priorities because the designs had been changed within the last decade.

In June of 2002, the Mint introduced a formal plan to change the nickel, which included the design mentioned on Wikipedia. Cantor introduced a bill to retain Monticello within four days of the Mint's announcement. The introduced bill mandated that Monticello be required on the coin. The House passed a version of the bill which required Jefferson on one side and Monticello on the other, and allowed for a Lewis & Clark theme until 2006. The bill was not passed into law.

Subsequently, Treasury Secretary O'Neill said he had no plans to change coin designs without Congressional approval, in direct contradiction to Mint Director Fore's statements. The next spring, Cantor succeeded in getting his bill passed, and since 2003, Jefferson and Monticello are mandated nickel designs.

So today we're stuck with a Congress that has a healthy misunderstanding of the purpose of the 25-Year Design Law passed in 1890. When they get a bug to change coin designs, you get overkill, with multiple designs over a multi-year period, or you get permanent designs when special interests get wind of your plan to change.

At February 15, 2009 at 2:22 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would have thought that maybe a "State Capitol" quarter would have been cool to coincide with the State Hood quarters. Might have made for a nice collection to have, once completed.

Just a thought...
~The Yankee~

At February 25, 2009 at 6:49 AM , Blogger ericl1 said...

Are they going to have France? There's an American "national site" in France...the Normandy cemetary, and then there's the FDR Campobello National park in New Brunswick Canada. Or the Interzone national monument in Tangier, Morocco.

Of course, there's the Midway Island National wildlife reserve, which is not part of anything...

don't they deserve something?

At September 3, 2009 at 5:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

why does it matter? If you don't like them don't collect them. besides, it will give all amatuer coin collectors something to collect at face value. personally I like collecting stuff that costs face value and by the end turn it into profit.

At September 3, 2009 at 5:15 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you don't like them then don't collect them. Besides, it will give all amateur collectors something to collect at face value.

At November 23, 2009 at 5:02 PM , Anonymous Andy Bean said...

Personally I am against the "state parks/sites" quarter program. The fifty states was cool, but after ten years I am ready for a design that will be around for a while. State parks might make nice designs for commemorative coins or some bullion series (like the vistas of liberty), but with the current presidential dollar program also I am not into another lengthy redisgn for circulating coinage.

At September 25, 2010 at 6:59 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't like the helter-skelter method of distrubution for these quarters. The distribution of the State quarters was handled much more fairly for all collectors.

At February 20, 2011 at 3:20 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

Just what is the distribution for these quarters? It's now 2011 and I have a complete set of state quarters P & D, but have yet to see ANY of the territory 2009, or national park 2010 quarters. I live just outside Atlanta.


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