State Quarters

The US Mint’s 50 State Quarters program continues to generate interest and perhaps create a few coin collectors in the process. The new designs have added vitality to our pocket change.

For 2005 the next five quarters will be California, Minnesota, Oregon, Kansas and West Virginia.

I’ve added all five to the US Coin Gallery in the State Quarters category.

Here’s some information about each of them.

California Capital: Sacramento Statehood: September 9, 1850

The first quarter released in 2005 honors California, and is the 31st in the United States Mint’s 50 State Quarters® Program. California was admitted into the Union on September 9, 1850, becoming our Nation’s 31st State. Nicknamed the “Golden State,” California’s quarter depicts naturalist and conservationist John Muir admiring Yosemite Valley’s monolithic granite headwall known as “Half Dome” and also contains a soaring California condor. The coin bears the inscriptions “California,” “John Muir,” “Yosemite Valley” and “1850.”

Minnesota Capital: St. Paul Statehood: May 11, 1858

The second quarter to be released in 2005 commemorates the State of Minnesota, “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” On May 11, 1858, Minnesota became the 32nd state admitted into the Union, and as such, it is the 32nd coin to be issued in the United States Mint’s popular 50 State Quarters® Program. The design features a tree-lined lake with two people fishing, a loon on the water, and a textured outline of the State surrounding its nickname, “Land of 10,000 Lakes.”

Oregon Capital: Salem Statehood: February 14, 1859

The State of Oregon is honored with the third quarter to be released in 2005, and the 33rd in the United States Mint’s 50 State Quarters® Program. On February 14, 1859, Oregon became the 33rd state to be admitted into the Union. Its coin design features a portion of Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the United States, viewed from the south-southwest rim. The design incorporates Wizard Island, as well as Watchman and Hillman Peaks on the lake’s rim and conifers. The coin bears the inscription “Crater Lake.”

Kansas Capital: Topeka Statehood: January 29, 1861

The fourth quarter to be released in 2005 commemorates the State of Kansas. On January 29, 1861, the “Sunflower State” became the 34th state to be admitted into the Union. Kansas marks the 34th coin to be issued in the United States Mint’s popular 50 State Quarters® Program, and features a buffalo and sunflower motif, emblematic of the State’s history and natural beauty.

West Virginia Capital: Charleston Statehood: June 20, 1863

The fifth and final quarter to be released in 2005 commemorates the State of West Virginia. On June 20, 1863, the “Mountain State” became the 35th state to be admitted into the Union, making this the 35th coin to be issued in the United States Mint’s popular 50 State Quarters® Program. This coin captures the scenic beauty of the State with its depiction of the New River and the New River Gorge Bridge. The coin bears the inscription “New River Gorge.”

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