Even though you can find several pricey and collectible American quarter types, only Washington quarters are still in circulation these days. The US Mint produced them from 1932 to 1998, but numerous coins are still used for transactions.
The US Mint has struck 56 different quarters with different reverses from 2010 to 2021, but their obverse sides were always the same. Since these new coins are typically inexpensive, you should look for older mintage when you want to add the most valuable quarters in circulation to your collection.
Most Valuable Quarters In Circulation
You can still find Washington quarters made after Laura Gardin Fraser and John Flanagan‘s designs in circulation. These coins with a reeded edge have a diameter of 0.95669 inches (24.3 mm). You can find two versions in circulation, the one made of silver weighing 0.20094 troy ounces (6.25 g) and clad type weighing 0.2 ounces (5.67 g).
The US Mint produced these quarters of 90% silver from 1932 to 1965, while later pieces have come with cupronickel clad to copper composition. Even though collectors grabbed silver specimens for their collections, all are still valid currencies you can use in transactions.
Most valuable quarters in circulation
|Lots found||Year||Auction record|
|Type 1 (silver) Washington quarter|
|5203||1932 D MS 66||$143,750|
|5954||1932 S MS 66||$45,500|
|1141||1949 D MS 68||$43,475|
|1147||1948 MS 68||$43,200|
|1809||1932 MS 67||$40,250|
|1443||1964 D MS 68||$38,400|
|826||1947 MS 68||$32,400|
|956||1950 PR 68 DCAM||$31,200|
|1496||1936 S MS 68||$31,200|
|1005||1941 S MS 68||$28,750|
|847||1962 MS 67+||$26,400|
|513||1961 D MS 67+||$24,000|
|1568||1941 MS 68||$23,500|
|1545||1948 S MS 68 CAC||$23,500|
|1105||1943 MS 68||$23,000|
|1073||1943 S MS 68||$23,000|
|1035||1934 D MS 67||$21,850|
|774||1952 D MS 67+||$21,150|
|Type 2 (clad) Washington quarter|
|606||1983 P MS 65||$15,862|
|448||1965 MS Gem BU||$12,650|
|362||1966 MS 68||$11,750|
The 1932 Washington quarter is one of two dates with mintages under one million, making it the key date and rarest in the series. The Denver mint produced only 436,800 silver specimens, worth $141 to $1,228 in circulated condition.
However, collectors often pay $13,910 for pieces in the mint state. The most expensive is the one sold at Bowers & Merena auction in 2008 for an astonishing $143,750.
With a low mintage of only 408,000, this Washington quarter struck in San Francisco is among the rarest of the series. You can buy most pieces used in transactions for $170 to $343, but those in the mint state are often worth up to $5,545.
However, you can find several pricey highly-graded specimens, including the one sold at an auction in 2020 for $45,500. Another one reached $35,250 in 2013. Both pieces are beautiful and are in MS 66 grade without significant scratches.
The Denver mint produced 10,068,400 silver Washington quarters in 1949. Even though most pieces are inexpensive, and you can find them for $5.35 to $7.48, ones in the mint state can reach a price of $56.
However, it is far away from the auction record that one of these coins won in 2019. One collector paid $43,475 for it in Legend Rare Coin Auctions. Interestingly, a similar specimen in the same grade was paid only $17,255.75 in 2010.
Since the post-war recession began to rise in 1948, the quarter production in Philadelphia increased by approximately 50% compared to the previous year. With a high mintage of 35,196,000 coins, you can expect them to be inexpensive nowadays.
Their price range is from $5.38 to $40, depending on the condition. However, one piece with beautiful gold and pink toning is an entirely different case. One collector paid $43,200 for the 1948 MS 68 Washington quarter at Stack’s Bowers auction in 2021.
Besides one unique silver, vividly toned piece sold for $40,250 at Heritage Auctions in 2012, most Washington quarters of 5,404,000 minted in Philadelphia are pretty inexpensive.
Their price is typical $5.37 to $480, depending on the condition. Experts estimate that only 13 Washington quarters in MS 67 grade still exist, plus one rated MS 68.
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Mintage in the Denver mint was 704,135,528 silver Washington quarters in 1964. Most are pretty standard, particularly in circulated condition, and you can buy one coin in good grade for $5.36, while the one in the mint state costs a modest $14.
The most expensive is an exquisitely toned specimen in MS 68 with a slightly mottled distribution over both sides. One collector paid $38,400 for it at Stack’s Bowers in 2021.
Among 22,556,000 silver Washington quarters minted in Philadelphia, only one remains in MS 68 grade, as the best-rated coin produced this year. This unique piece with gold and pinkish-apricot iridescence toning reached a price of $32,400 at an auction in 2021.
On the other hand, average coins typically cost $5.33 to $52. However, you can sometimes find well-preserved quarters with this date that cost $10,000 on the open market.
Most Washington quarter silver proofs of 51,386 minting in Philadelphia are worth $80 on the current coin market.
However, one collector set aside an astonishing $31,200 for this flawlessly preserved, a razor-sharp specimen with Deep Cameo at Heritage Auctions in 2022. For now, it is known that only two pieces of the same quality exist in private collections.
The San Francisco mint produced 3,828,000 silver Washington quarters in 1936. Since most of them are heavily circulated and readily available, their price ranges from $5.33 to $372.
On the other side, you can buy a piece in pristine condition for a significant $25,000 on the open market. The auction record won the 1936 S MS 68 Washington quarter as only one piece in this grade. One collector purchased it for $31,200 at Stack’s Bowers auction in 2021.
Most survived Washington quarters of 16,080,000 minted in San Francisco in 1941, the first war year, are worth $5.33 to $80 nowadays.
However, some pieces in a pristine condition sometimes reach a price of $10,500 on the open market. Only one specimen in MS 68 was sold at an auction in 2022 for a fantastic $28,750.
Since the Philadelphia mint produced 36,156,000 Washington quarters in 1962, they are pretty standard on the current coin market. Most typically cost a modest $5.33 to $14.
On the other hand, one rare, beautifully toned Gem won the auction record after one collector paid $26,400 for it at Heritage Auctions in 2019. It was one of only six pieces in the same grade.
Most of the 83,656,928 silver Washington quarters minted in Denver in 1961 are worth $5.32 to $14, depending on their condition. Only rare coins in the mint state sell for about $7,400 on the open market.
One of the rare exceptions is a specimen with smooth surfaces that was paid $24,000 at Stack’s Bowers auction in 2019. Experts approximate that it is one of only five pieces in the same grade that still exist in private collections.
Washington quarters minted in Philadelphia in 1941, at the beginning of WWII, were still made of 90% silver and 10% copper. The mint produced 79,032,000 pieces because the end of the Great Depression raised economic activity. Consequently, it caused doubled coin mintage in this mint.
Nowadays, you can effortlessly find these coins for $5.32 to $52, and even Gems in MS 67 grade are plentiful. You can buy one for approximately $9,000 on the open market. One rare specimen with MS 68 rated was sold at Heritage Auctions in 2013 for a surprisingly high price of $23,500.
Each survived coin of 15,960,000 minted in San Francisco costs $5.32 to $52, depending on its condition. However, the only existing 1948 S MS 68 CAC Washington quarter with booming luster and wonderful patina won an auction record. One collector bought it for $23,500 at Heritage Auctions in 2013.
The Philadelphia mint struck 99,700,000 Washington quarters in 1943. You can find them in various conditions, with a price range from $5.32 to $46. The most expensive top-tier rarity reached $23,000 at Heritage Auctions in 2012.
Only three among 21,700,000 Washington quarters minted in San Francisco still exist in MS 68 grade. While other pieces typically cost $5.31 to $65, one of those ultimate coins reached $23,000 at Bowers & Merena in 2008. The other two were sold for lower prices of $20,400 and $5,040.
You can purchase most 1934 Washington quarters produced in Denver for $5.32 to $286, but some pieces in pristine condition sell for about $7,750 on the open market. The record price of $21,850 reached a specimen in MS 67 grade at Heritage Auctions in 2007.
Only one Washington quarter minted in Denver in 1952 was so beautiful that one collector decided to pay $21,150 for it at an auction in 2019.
Even though there are 22 existing coins in MS 67, only that one with gold toning is rated MS 67+. Other surviving pieces of 49,795,200 produced are worth $5.33 to $35, depending on quality and preservation levels.
The Philadelphia mint produced 673,535,000 Washington quarters made of copper and nickel, with a copper center in 1983. Pieces in the mint state typically cost $74, but one coin in MS grade was paid a fantastic $15,863 at Heritage Auctions in 2014. The reason was an error since it was overstruck on a game token.
The mintage of 1,819,717,540 Washington quarters struck in 1965 sounds unbelievable. Thanks to such a high number of coins, their price on the current market is only $10. However, one rare GEM BU specimen was sold for $12,650 at Stack’s auction in 2005.
The Philadelphia mint produced 821,101,500 clad Washington quarters in 1966, including this precious one preserved in high condition. While average coins struck this year are worth less than $8, one collector paid $11,750 for this rare piece in MS 68 grade at an auction in 2019.
Other Valuable Quarters Produced for Circulation
Besides Washington quarters, some other American quarters were in circulation in the past, including:
- Draped Bust quarters with a small or heraldic eagle, produced from 1796 to 1807
- Capped Bust quarters with or without the motto, produced from 1815 to 1838
- Seated Liberty quarters, produced from 1838 to 1891
- Barber dimes (quarters), produced from 1892 to 1916
- Standing Liberty quarters, produced from 1916 to 1930
Some of these coins are expensive in the current coin market, but it is not very likely to find them in circulation nowadays.
The most valuable circulated quarters
|Coin||Grade||Production year||Date of sale||Price|
|Draped bust||MS 66||1796||2022||$1,740,000|
|Capped bust||PR 66+ CAM||1827/3/2 (overdate)||2015||$705,000|
|Draped bust||MS 67||1807||2020||$630,000|
|Barber||MS 68||1901 S||1990||$550,000|
|Liberty seated||PR 65||1839 (no drapery)||2008||$517,500|
|Liberty seated||MS 64||1873 CC (no arrows)||2012||$470,000|
|Liberty seated||PR 68||1850||2008||$460,000|
|Draped bust||MS 66||1805||2008||$402,500|
|Capped bust||PR 65||1823/2 (overdate)||2014||$396,562.50|
|Liberty seated||PR 63||1838 (no drapery)||2013||$381,875|
|Capped bust||MS 67★||1828 (re-punched denomination)||2013||$352,500|
|Liberty seated||MS 65||1871 CC||2014||$352,500|
|Draped bust||MS 65||1804||2011||$345,000|
|Liberty seated||PR 66||1841||2008||$345,000|
|Capped bust||PR 67 CAM||1834||2015||$329,000|
You can find several quarter types the US Mint produced in its history, but only Washington quarters are still in circulation. Since most of the 56 different types produced from 2010 to 2021 are inexpensive, you should look for older specimens when you want to buy the most expensive ones.
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