The America the Beautiful Quarters Program will produce quarters with reverse (tails side) designs showcasing a national park or other federally preserved area from each state, U.S. territory, and the District of Columbia.
“The new quarter program recognizes that public places of inspiration and recreation have always been important to Americans,” said Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. “The quarters highlight the diversity and magnificence of 48 National Park Service sites and two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuges cared for by the Department of the Interior as well as six national forests administered by the Department of Agriculture. Hopefully the coins will encourage people to learn more about each area and its significance to our heritage.”
A new quarter will be introduced approximately every 10 weeks for eleven years. The 56 coins will be issued sequentially in the order in which the featured location was first placed under the care of the federal government.
The first, Hot Springs National Park, was established as Hot Springs Reservation in 1832 and later became a national park. Yellowstone National Park was established in 1872, followed by Yosemite in 1890 and the Grand Canyon in 1893.
Congress authorized the America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 to celebrate the nation’s legacy of conservation. The legislation recalls noteworthy steps in the nation’s preservation movement and quotes Theodore Roosevelt who said that nothing short of defending this country in wartime “compares in importance with the great central task of leaving this land even a better land for our descendants than it is for us.”