The South Dakota Quarter
The fifth and final commemorative quarter-dollar coin released in 2006 honors South Dakota, the "Mount Rushmore State," and is the 40th coin in the United States Mint's 50 State Quarters® Program. Admitted into the Union on November 2, 1889, South Dakota became the nation's 40th state. The release of this quarter signals the end of the eighth year of the 50 State Quarters Program.
The South Dakota quarter features an image of the state bird, a Chinese ring-necked pheasant, in flight above a depiction of the Mount Rushmore National Monument, featuring the faces of four American Presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. The design is bordered by heads of wheat. The coin's design also bears the inscriptions "South Dakota" and "1889."
Sculptor Gutzon Borglum began drilling into Mount Rushmore, the 5,725-foot peak rising above Harney National Forest, in 1927. Creation of the "Shrine of Democracy" took 14 years and cost approximately $1 million, though it is now deemed priceless.
Choosing the DesignThe South Dakota Quarter Advisory Committee began accepting ideas from the citizens of South Dakota via telephone, letters, and e-mail. A group of five possible narratives was agreed upon and forwarded to the United States Mint for consideration. The final artistic renderings, developed by the sculptor-engravers of the United States Mint and artists in the United States Mint's Artistic Infusion Program, were returned to South Dakota, and a statewide vote was conducted. On April 27, 2005, South Dakota Governor M. Michael Rounds announced his recommendation of the "Mount Rushmore and Pheasant" design, echoing the choice of those who participated in the statewide vote.
The Department of the Treasury approved the design on May 28, 2005. The other design concepts considered during the final selection process were "Mount Rushmore National Monument," featuring a three-quarter view of the famous mountain carving; "American Bison," depicting the classic animal symbol of the west; "Chinese Ring-necked Pheasant," featuring an image of the state bird in flight; and "Mount Rushmore and Bison," which placed an American bison in the foreground and Mount Rushmore in the background.
The 50 State Quarter ProgramSigned into law in 1997, the 50 States Commemorative Coin Program Act has become the most successful numismatic program in American history, with roughly half of the U.S. population collecting the coins, either in a casual manner or as a serious pursuit. The program produces five different reverse designs each year for ten years—each representing a different state—the order of which is determined by the order states were admitted to the Union. Design concepts are submitted to the Secretary of the Treasury by state governors for final approval. The obverse of each quarter is a slight redesign of the quarter's previous design. The cost to manufacture a quarter is about 5 cents, providing a profit of approximately 20 cents per coin. So far, the federal government has made a profit of $4.6 billion from collectors taking the coins out of circulation. In 2009, the U.S. Mint launched a separate program issuing quarters commemorating the District of Columbia and various U.S. territories.
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|Release Date:||November 6, 2006|
|Design:||Mount Rushmore monument|
Chinese ring-neck pheasant
|Captions:||"South Dakota 1889"|
|Composition:||Copper Nickel alloy|
|Weight:||2.000 oz (5.670 g)|
|Diameter:||0.955 in (24.26 mm)|
|Thickness:||0.07 in (1.75 mm)|
|No. of Reeds:||119|
|Data Source: The U.S. Mint.|