Editor’s update: The US Mint announced the national park and site quarter release scheduled Wednesday, Sept. 9. In a surprise, Yellowstone National Park will be released second in 2010. Although it is the first American national park, Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas was selected first having been designated a reserve first. For more developments, read America the Beautiful Quarters Introduced on CoinNews.
The United States Mint is scheduled to announce on Wednesday, Sept. 9, the list of 56 historic sites and parks to be commemorated on the new quarter-dollar series beginning in 2010. These National Parks Quarters will run for 11 years and feature one location from each state as well as the District of Columbia and the five U.S. territories.
Authorized by the America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-156), the coins will still apparently bear the likeness of George Washington on the obverse (heads side), as they have done since 1932. However, located on the reverse (tails side) will be a design emblematic of the chosen location.
The first site in the list and to be featured in the new series is already known. 2010 will kickoff with the Yellowstone National Park Quarter.
"As the nation’s first national park, it is only fitting that Yellowstone, as a part of Wyoming ‘s unique heritage, is commemorated on the first quarter," Senator John Barrasso commented last year when the act passed in the U.S. House.
"Millions of people experience the pristine wilderness and rugged beauty of areas like Yellowstone National Park … The people of Wyoming are rightly proud of the many places that display our state’s unique heritage and natural beauty."
Yellowstone, primarily located in Wyoming, was established as the first national park with an act signed by President Ulysses S. Grant on March 1, 1872. The park is the home of the famous ‘Old Faithful’ Geyser — as well as many other geothermal features, wildlife and scenery, and encompasses an area of almost 3,500 square miles.
Rotating design on quarters started back in 1999 with the 50 State Quarter program which lasted until 2008. 2009 was the beginning for the D.C. and the U.S. Territories quarters. The newest quarter series will issued at a rate of five per year and with an order dictated by when a site officially became part of the national park or national historic site system.
Design concepts for the Yellowstone Park Quarter will be available by the Fall, and released by the US Mint.