The United States Mint 50 State Quarters? Program begun in 1999 produced a series of 50 quarter dollar coins with special designs honoring each state. Five different designs were issued each year from 1999 through 2008. States were commemorated in the order of their entrance into statehood.
These are all legal tender coins of standard weight and composition. The obverse side depicting President George Washington was modified to include some of the wording previously used on the reverse. The modification was authorized by special legislation, and carried out by Mint sculptor-engraver William Cousins, whose initials were added to the truncation of Washington’s neck adjacent to those of the original designer, John Flanagan.
Each state theme was proposed, and approved, by the governor of that state. Final designs were created by Mint personnel.
Circulation coins were made at the Philadelphia and Denver mints. Proof coins were made in San Francisco.
Some statehood quarters were accidentally made with “dis-oriented” dies and are valued higher than ordinary pieces. Normal United States coins have dies oriented in “coin alignment,” such that the reverse appears upside down when the coin is rotated from right to left. Values for the rotated-die quarters vary according to the amount of shifting. The most valuable are those that are shifted 180 degrees, so that both sides appear upright when the coin is turned over (called medal alignment).
Manufacturing varieties showing die doubling or other minor, unintentional characteristics are of interest to collectors and are often worth premium prices.