The US Mint minted the first Washington quarters in 1932. Although the original idea was to be one-year commemorative coins, their production has continued until today. They paid tribute to George Washington and were only the second American coinage with the former President’s image on the obverse.
The Washington quarter didn’t change its appearance until 1998. However, there was a change in the composition in 1965 due to the increase in the price of silver on the stock market. Be aware that the content of the precious metal is not negligible, and it significantly affects the 1954 quarter value.
1954 Washington quarter value Chart
|Condition||1954 No mint mark quarter||1954 D quarter||1954 S quarter|
|Mint state 60||$8.04||$8.04||$8.04|
|Mint state 65||$37||$40||$42|
*by USA Coin Book
History of the 1954 Washington Quarter
George Washington was born in 1732, so the bicentennial was only a few years after the Great Depression started. Even though that was a horrible period for Americans, this great man deserved the celebration of such an important date.
Therefore, the US Mint planned to strike a commemorative half-dollar coin, but Congress disagreed and required a regular issue of quarter dollars.
1954 Washington quarter
|Philadelphia||1954 No mint mark quarter||54,412,203|
|Philadelphia||1954 proof quarter||233,300|
|Denver||1954 D quarter||42,305,500|
|San Francisco||1954 S quarter||11,934,722|
You can recognize a few different obverse solutions from that period referred to the motto appearance. The Light and Medium Motto occurred only in that early period, while the US Mint finally standardized a Heavy Motto in 1936.
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Features of the 1954 Washington Quarter
Even though Washington quarters are one of the longest-lived US coinages, the US Mint rarely changed their composition and appearance.
Remember that most of the 1954 Washington quarters were in circulation for a long time, so you can expect them to show numerous signs of wear. However, their historical significance sets them apart and makes them interesting for collectors nowadays.
The obverse of the 1954 Washington quarter
In the coin’s obverse central part, you can see former President George Washington’s bust facing left. His simply depicted profile is typical for those times, without too many specific details besides his unique hairstyle. It includes an elegant bow that ties his hair into a low ponytail.
Besides the President’s bust, you can also see inscriptions on the obverse. On the left side is the famous phrase IN*GOD*WE*TRUST, directly struck in front of the profile. You can also read the word LIBERTY on the upper rim, while below the bust is the minting year.
The reverse of the 1954 Washington quarter
A bald eagle, representing America’s national symbol, dominates the quarter reverse. This spread-winged bird carries an arrow bundle in its talons, while two crossed olive branches lie just below them.
Above its head, between the wings’ feather tips, is the saying E*PLURIBUS*UNUM. The country name, UNITED*STATES*OF*AMERIKA, stretches along the upper rim, while the denomination is placed on the lower rim. If the coin has the mint mark, you can find it between the words QUARTER*DOLLAR and the olive branches.
1954 Washington quarter
|Face value||25 cents ($0.25)|
|Coin diameter||0.957 inches (24.3 mm)|
|Coin thickness||0.069 inches (1.75 mm)|
|Compound||Silver-copper alloy (90%: 10%)|
|Silver weight||0.181 troy ounces (5.62 g)|
|Coin weight||0.201 troy ounces (6.25 g)|
Other features of the 1954 Washington quarter
The 1954 quarter is a silver coin containing 0.181 troy ounces (5.62 g) of 0.900 precious metal, while the rest of the alloy is copper. It is round and has a reed rim, while its weight is 0.201 troy ounces (6.25 g).
With a diameter of 0.957 inches (24.3 mm), and a thickness of 0.069 inches (1.75 mm), it doesn’t significantly vary from standard measurements for quarters.
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1954 Washington Quarter Value Guides
The US Mint released 108,885,725 quarters from the regular strikes and proofs in 1954. Three mints minted four types of this coin, including regular specimens and those intended for collectors. Unlike pieces from the other two mints, those from Philadelphia didn’t bear the mint mark.
1954 No Mint Mark Washington quarter Value
Philadelphia had the largest circulation of quarters in 1954 compared to the other two mints. With 54,412,203 minted coins, it produced slightly less than half of the total circulation that year.
Distinguishing these specimens from those coming from other mints is effortless, thanks to the absence of the letter that signifies the mint mark.
These quarters’ prices are affordable on the market, and you can buy specimens in average preserved condition for only $6. On the other hand, quarters in the mint state are worth a little more, but you can still buy most of them for less than $40.
As you can expect, auction records differ significantly from the mentioned values. For instance, the 1954 Washington quarter graded MS 68 sold for $17,250 at an auction in 2023.
1954 proof Washington quarter Value
Besides regular coins, the Philadelphia mint also struck 233,300 proof Washington quarters in 1954. Just like regular coins intended for circulation, those minted for collectors also came without the mint mark on the reverse.
Their value varies, depending on the reflection you can notice on their surfaces. Interestingly, average prices range from a modest five dollars to $3,500 for pieces with deep cameo contrast.
1954 proof quarter value
|Condition||1954 proof quarter||1954 proof CAM quarter||1954 proof DCAM quarter|
|PR 64||$12 to $14.4||/||/|
|PR 65||$15 to $18||/||/|
|PR 66||$20 to $24||$50 to $60||$250 to $300|
|PR 67||$40 to $48||$75 to $90||$300 to $360|
|PR 68||$50 to $60||$200 to $240||$1,000 to $1,200|
|PR 69||$250 to $300||/||$3,000 to $3,500|
Be aware that many collectors are willing to pay such a high price for specially-toned quarters, affecting the auction records. For instance, one collector paid a significant $12,925 for the deep cameo 1954 PR 69 quarter at auction in 2014.
As expected, the cameo 1954 PR 69 quarter was sold for a less price ($1,546). The lowest price of $700 was reached by the 1954 PR 69 Washington quarter on eBay in 2023.
1954 D Washington quarter Value
The Denver mint had the second-largest quarter mintage in 1954, precisely 42,305,500 coins. You can effortlessly recognize pieces from this mint by the mark D struck under the olive branches on the reverse.
You can buy quarters that spent many years in circulation for a very affordable price of $6. On the other hand, specimens in the mint state can cost a bit more. In most cases, their price range is from $8 to $40.
Selling these coins at auctions can often bring you more money than expected. Thus, one of these coins with an MS 67+ grade was sold for as much as $9,000 at an auction in 2020.
1954 S Washington quarter Value
With a mintage of 11,934,722 quarters, the San Francisco mint reached the fewest number of these coins in 1954. You can quickly distinguish them from other quarters by the letter S, which this mint put on all coins it has ever minted.
Despite a low mintage, these quarters’ value is pretty similar to coins from other mints. You can buy a specimen from circulation in average condition for an affordable $6, while pieces in the mint state typically cost more. Their average prices are approximately $40.
On the other hand, the auction records these coins sometimes win are entirely different and often significantly higher than others in the set. The current record holder is the 1954 S MS 68 Washington quarter because one collector bought it for an incredible $12,000.
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1954 Washington Quarter Errors
As you know, errors occur during every coin minting, including the 1954 quarters. They can be so imperceptible as to be irrelevant, so such specimens’ value is negligible. On the other hand, coins with more noticeable flaws are highly collectible and can reach higher prices than regular pieces.
This error occurs because of internal lamination when impurities become trapped under the planchet surface during its preparation. The weight of coins minted on such planchets is always less than others in the series.
The planchet can peel or split in this area because of weak adhesion, creating imperfections mainly when containing solid alloy. Splitting can occur before or after forging.
You can see a stripes pattern on a coin struck on a planchet split before striking. Additionally, the strike is often weaker than usual. Coins struck after division show a regular strike on one side, while the other has a rough surface with no design.
Remember that splitting can be partial with a so-called hinge and is called a shell. The 1954 Washington quarter with this error type is worth approximately $200.
This kind of error results from the enormous pressure that the die undergoes during the minting process. Its cracking causes a small gap inside it. Continuing production with the damaged die causes the metal to fill the crack, and a bumpy line appears on the coin surface.
Quarters with the most noticeable cracks are highly valuable. Moreover, some collectors focus on collecting only coins with this error type. The 1954 Washington quarter value with die crack error is around $100.
Coins with this error appear after a die fracture, usually in the brittle fracture form. Since a piece of the die surface breaks off and falls out during the minting process, tiny breaks can form in interstices. You can see them on the coin surface (chips) or attached to the quarter rim (cuds) and buy one for $100 to $450.
FAQ about the 1954 Washington Quarter
Are 1954 quarters common or rare?
The US Mint minted nearly 110 million 1954 Washington quarters, so these coins can’t be considered scarce. It is impossible to find any unique varieties that set certain quarters apart from others, making them common.
Which 1954 Washington quarter is worth a lot of money?
- The 1954 MS 68 Washington quarter (purchased for $17,250 in 2003 at Heritage Auctions)
- The 1954 PR 69 DCAM Washington quarter (purchased for $12,925 in 2014 at Heritage Auctions)
- The 1954 S MS 68 Washington quarter (purchased for $12,000 in 2021 at Stark’s Bowers)
- The 1954 D MS 67+ Washington quarter (purchased for $9,000 in 2020 at Heritage Auctions)
- The 1954 PR 69 CAM Washington quarter (purchased for $1,546 in 2013 at Great Collections)
- The 1954 PR 69 Washington quarter (purchased for $700 in 2023 (on eBay)
How much money can you get for the 1954 No Mint Mark quarter?
The Philadelphia mint struck nearly 55 million quarters in 1954. Depending on the condition, their value ranges from $5 to $40 on the open market. However, auction prices can be different and range up to $20,000.
What are the most pricey quarters in the series?
The Washington quarters from the early period (the early 1930s) are challenging to find in highly preserved conditions. It is understandable since most were released into circulation and used in everyday transactions for decades. Therefore, it is natural to expect that coins from these years are the most sought-after by collectors.
The most pricey quarter became one of the coins from Denver produced in the first minting year after it sold for an impressive $143,750. The highest-priced quarter minted in 1954 was a coin from the Philadelphia mint, graded MS 68. A collector bought this specimen at an auction for a significantly less price, $17,250.