The 2010 Yellowstone National Park Quarter was the second release of the new quarter program featuring parks and sites from across America. The official circulation release date for the coins was June 1, 2010. Yellowstone was chosen to represent the state of Wyoming, although the park’s borders extend into Montana and Idaho.
The obverse design of the Yellowstone Quarter features a portrait of George Washington, which will be used for all coins in the series. The reverse of the quarter depicts a scene of the famous geyser Old Faithful erupting. American Bison, commonly referred to as Buffalo, appear in the foreground and background of the design. The inscriptions read “Yellowstone”, “Wyoming”, “E Pluribus Unum”, and the date “2010”. The reverse was designed and sculpted by Don Everhart.
Many had anticipated that the quarter featuring Yellowstone National Park would be the first quarter released in the new series since it was the first officially designated National Park in 1872. However, it ended up being the second release since the Hot Springs National Park was designated as a federal reserve forty years prior.
The Yellowstone National Park Quarter was minted for circulation at the Philadelphia and Denver Mints. Proof and silver proof versions of the coin were struck in San Francisco. Finally, the design from the quarter will be featured on one of the America the Beautiful 5 ounce silver bullion coins.
About Yellowstone National Park
Long before Yellowstone National Park became of importance to the newly formed people and government of the United States of America, it was already considered sacred ground to the Native Americans. They used the area that we now know as Yellowstone as hunting grounds, a place to set up their temporary villages, and the center of many of their travel routes for trading and hunting. When you visit Yellowstone, which was officially named a National Park in 1872, it is easy to see why it was considered so valuable by all who passed through it. The area now enclosed by the Park contains a wide variety of wildlife and geothermal structures, including one of the most famous natural geysers, Old Faithful.
The reason that these geysers exist is that Yellowstone is thought to be centered right over the top of one of the largest super volcanoes in the whole continent of North America, known as the Yellowstone Caldera. All over Yellowstone National Park, you can see lava still flowing and also the rock formations that have formed as the lava cools after reaching the surface of the earth.
Another great thing about Yellowstone National Park is that it is home to some of the most diverse populations of fish, birds, mammals and reptiles in the entire country. Several of the species of animals that call the park home are endangered or threatened, making the protection of the Park very important to their survival. Although there are some paved roads around certain features of the park, much of it has remained unspoiled by human development, making it a unique place to reconnect with nature.
Yellowstone National Park Quarter Launch Ceremony
The United States Mint and National Park Service hosted a launch ceremony on June 3, 2010, to mark the release of the Yellowstone National Park Quarter. The ceremony was held within view of the iconic Old Faithful geyser.
A few thousand members of the public attended to see Mint Director Edmund Moy and Park Superintendent Suzanne Lewis co-host the event. Special guest speaker Paul Schullery, a noted Yellowstone historian and author, was also present. Attendees were able to exchange currency for rolls of the new quarters after the event.