Washington quarters are the things that jingle in our pockets and purses, the coins that light up jukeboxes, feed parking meters, and cause bottles of Coca-Cola to drop from vending machines throughout the land. Billions have been struck and large numbers of post-1964 quarters remain in circulation.

As it turns out, the coin that is so familiar to us today was not the first choice of the commission that was formed to choose a design to honor the 1932 bicentennial of George Washington’s birth. That honor went to Laura Gardin Fraser, who had designed the Oregon Trail commemorative coin and whose husband designed the 1913 Buffalo nickel.

For some reason, Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon was unimpressed by Fraser’s design or the commission’s unanimous support of it. He called for a second contest, which Fraser also won, then ignored all recommendations and gave the assignment to John Flanagan instead. (Fraser passed away in 1966; her design was finally put into production for a commemorative Washington coin in 1999.)

There are three basic types of Washington quarters. The first two types concern the composition of the coins. Coins minted from 1932 through 1964 contain 90-percent silver, but coins from 1965 through 1998 have no silver in them at all. These so-called sandwich coins have centers of pure copper and skins of 75-percent copper and 25-percent nickel.

The other exceptions to the rule are the coins minted in 1976, when the eagle on the quarter’s reverse took a year off for the country’s bicentennial. That year only, the great bird was replaced by an image of a colonial drummer, which was designed by Jack L. Ahr.

More than a billion and a half bicentennial quarters were struck, so they will never be considered rare. Less available, but only marginally more costly, are the nine million, 40-percent-silver bicentennial coins and proofs struck in San Francisco.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Legendary Coins and Currency

Legendary Coins and Currency

This online exhibition from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History is a great way to get an overview… [read review or visit site]

Society of U.S. Pattern Collectors

Society of U.S. Pattern Collectors

Home to the Society of U.S. Pattern collectors, this well-organized site provides in-depth information on pattern c… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

1932-d Washington Quarter ** Very Tough First Year Issue! ** Free Shipping!Uncirculated 1940-d Washington Quarter Free Shipping1932 - 1998 U.s. Washington Quarter Complete Set In Dansco Album W/key Dates Nr!1932-d Washington Quarter ** Tough Key Date Fist Year Issue! ** Free Shipping!1932-1964 P,d,s Washington Quarter 3 Book Set "circ-bu"1935 D Silver Washington Quarter Pcgs Ms 64 Cac BlazerGem Brilliant Uncirculated 1934-d Silver Washington Quarter Dollar ~ Nr!Uncirculated 1938-s Washington Quarter Free Shipping1932-s Washington Quarter, Key Date! (.99 Reserve Free Shipping)1939 S Washington Quarter; Tougher Date Hi Grade1932-s Washington Quarter With A 1937-s Washington Quarter Very Nice Lot!!!!!!!!1944 To 1954 Bu Roll Of 90% Silver Washington Quarters (40 Quarters)Complete Washington Set 1932-1964 - From Jt Stanton's Cherrypickercoins-31021937s Washington Quarter Very Very High Grade-eye Appeal- Much Luster1952-d Washington Qtr Ngc Ms66 Monster Rainbow Mint Set Toned ~colorful Toning~1932-s (san Francisco Mint) Washington Quarter €1952 25c "superbird" Fs-901 (pcgs 67/proof) Washington Silver Quarter Rare!!Roll Of 40 90% Silver Washington Quarters Various Dates From 1932 To 1964-pds1964 P&d $5.00 Bu Roll Of 90% Silver Washington Quarters1938-s Washington Quarter - Brilliant Uncirculated Beautiful Choice High Grade++ 1932/s Washington Quarter Awesome Coin1932 €Uncirculated 1937-d Washington Quarter Free ShippingUncirculated 1937 Washington Quarter Free Shipping1940-d Washington Silver Quarter. No Reserve.1932-s 25c Pcgs Ms64 - Key Date Washington Quarter - No Reserve!Massive Bu Silver Lot Of Franklin's And Washington'sPcgs Quarter Struck On Defective Clad Dime Planchet Off Metal Mint Error Unique1982-d Washington Quarter - Pcgs Slabbed Ms66+1932-d Washington Quarter 25Uncirculated 1937 Washington Quarter Free Shipping1949-d Pcgs Ms65 Washington Quarter!!1932-d Washington Quarter In Higher X/f Grade Key CoinUncirculated 1932 Washington Quarter Free Shipping1993 S Silver Washington Quarter Ngc Pf70 Ultra Cameo Portrait Label1947-s Silver Washington Quarter Ms 65 PcgsUncirculated 1932 Washington Quarter Free Shipping3 Day Sale 200 90% Silver Us Quarters, $50 Face Value, Silver Bullion, CoinsRoll 1964 Washington Silver Quarters.. Gem ProofsC5499- 1984-p Quarter 2 Coin Mated Pair #2 Struck On Top Of #1 Error Pcgs Ms64Lot: Roll (40) 90% Silver Washington Quarters Coins, Dates Pre-1965 - No ReserveLot: Roll (40) 90% Silver Washington Quarters Coins, Dates Pre-1965 - No ReserveLot Of 40 90% Silver Washington Quarters, 1 Roll.1964,earlier Mix 3 Day Auction1932-d Washington Quarter 25c Pcgs Xf Details Genuine- Starts $99.99! Key Date!1932-d Washington Quarter 251976 S Silver Washington Quarter Pcgs Ms681939-s Au+ Washington Quarter - From Jt Stanton's Cherrypickercoins - 17151934-d Washington Quarter 90% Silver F-xf Low Mintage18 Rolls (720 Coins) 90% Silver Pre-1965 Washington Quarters, Junk Silver6 Rolls 1964 Washington Silver QuartersLot Of 40 90% Silver Washington Quarters, 1 Roll.1964,earlier Mix 3 Day Auction1958 Proof Silver Washington Quarter Ngc Pf 66 Ultra Cameo1935-s 25c Washington Quarter Graded By Ngc Ms 65+Silver Washington Quarter Complete Set 83 Coins 1932-1964 Very Good - Extra FineChoice Bu Roll Of 40 1958 Washington Quarter Dollars 90% Silver400 Bicentennial Quarters Lot Of 10 Rolls1932 D + 1932 - S Washington Quaters Key Dates1943 Washington Quarter - Pcgs Slabbed Ms66+Key Date 1932-s Washington Quarter 251932-s. Washington Quarter! Great Detail And Condition! Key Date!! Wq3201