California State Quarters were released on January 31, 2005 as the thirty-first coin in the State Quarter series. California’s original Statehood date was September 9, 1850.
The reverse design of the California Quarter features conservationist and naturalist John Muir. The inscriptions include the State name, Statehood date, mintage date, “E Pluribus Unum,” “John Muir,” and “Yosemite Vally.” The coin’s reverse was designed by Garrett Burke and engraved by Don Everhart.
John Muir overlooks the granite headwall known as “Half Dome” in the Yosemite Valley. He had devoted his life to the conservation of natural beauty. After Yosemite National Park was established, he helped form a club to protect it. The quarter also includes the California condor, which was successfully repopulated after near extinction.
The 20 member California State Quarter Commission reviewed designs and selected 20 finalists. The governor narrowed the list to five which were sent to the United States Mint for review. The final design was selected by the governor. Other designs considered included “Waves and Sun”, “Gold Miner”, “Golden Gate Bridge”, and “Giant Sequoia”.
The Philadelphia mint produced 257,200,000 coins. The Denver mint produced 263,200,000 coins. The San Francisco Mint produced clad proof and 90% silver proof coins for inclusion in government issued proof sets.
California Quarter Mintages
- 2005-P California Quarter: 257,200,000
- 2005-D California Quarter: 263,200,000
- 2005-S Proof California Quarter: 3,262,960
- 2005-S Silver Proof California Quarter: 1,678,649
California Quarter Specifications
- Designers: William Cousins after John Flanagan (obverse), Garrett Burke (reverse)
- Composition: 91.67% copper, 8.33% nickel (clad), 90% silver, 10% copper (silver proof)
- Diameter: 24.26 mm
- Weight: 5.67 grams
- Thickness: 1.75 mm
- Edge: Reeded