Obverse. Image Courtesy of Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS.com)
  • 25 Cents 1976, KM# 204, United States of America (USA), 200th Anniversary of the United States
  • 25 Cents 1976, KM# 204, United States of America (USA), 200th Anniversary of the United States

A quarter, short for quarter dollar, is a U.S. coin worth 25 cents, one-fourth of a dollar. It has been produced since 1796. The choice of 1⁄4 as a denomination — as opposed to the 1⁄5 more common elsewhere — originated with the practice of dividing Spanish milled dollars into eight wedge-shaped segments. At one time "two bits" (that is, two "pieces of eight") was a common nickname for a quarter.

The Washington Quarter Dollar of 1932 was originally intended to be a commemorative coin to celebrate the 200th anniversary of George Washington's birth. The coin proved so popular that the design was continued as a regular-issue for circulation beginning in 1934 in silver.

1976 was the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Though actual independence was not won until the end of the Revolutionary War in 1783, the year 1776 has always held a special place in the hearts of Americans. Thus, it was felt fitting to create a numismatic tribute to this special anniversary and new reverse designs were created for the Washington Quarter Dollar, Kennedy Half Dollar, and Eisenhower Dollar. The obverse of each coin bore a dual date (1776-1976).


A head of Washington facing left, with "Liberty" above the head, the date below, and "In God We Trust" in the left field.

George Washington was the first President of the United States (1789–97), the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.

Mint mark can be seen on the lower right front of the coin, near Washington's pigtail. "S" stands for the San Francisco Mint, "D" for Denver and a blank specifies Philadelphia.

Designer John Flanagan from a 1786 bust by Houdon / William Cousins.

1776 • 1976


A colonial drummer facing left, with a victory torch encircled by thirteen stars at the upper left circled by 13 stars, one star for each state in the Union when the Declaration of Independence was signed.

Drummer boys are often depicted in Civil War artwork and literature. They may seem to have been nearly ornamental figures in military bands, but they actually served a very important purpose. And the character of the drummer boy, besides being a fixture in Civil War camps, became an enduring figure in American culture. In the Civil War drummers were an essential part of military bands for obvious reasons: the time they kept was important to regulate the marching of soldiers on parade. But drummers also performed a more valuable service apart from playing for parades or ceremonial occasions. In the 19th century drums were used as invaluable communication devices in camps and on battlefields. The drummers were required to learn dozens of drum calls, and the playing of each call would tell the soldiers they were required to perform a specific task.

E Pluribus Unum — Latin for "Out of many, one" — is a phrase on the Seal of the United States. Never codified by law, E Pluribus Unum was considered a de facto motto of the United States until 1956 when the United States Congress passed an act (H. J. Resolution 396), adopting "In God We Trust" as the official motto.

The design of the bicentennial quarter's reverse was chosen in a $5,000 contest announced by the U.S. Treasury in 1973. Mr. Jack L. Ahr was the winner.



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Type Commemorative Issue (Circulating)
Material Copper Nickel Clad Copper
Weight 5.67 g
Diameter 24.3 mm
Thickness 1.75 mm
Shape round
Alignment Coin
Denver Mint (D)
Philadelphia Mint (no mintmark)
San Francisco Mint (S)

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