The first coin released in the 2016 series of America the Beautiful quarters honors the state of Illinois and the Shawnee National Forest. Known more for the endless urban area of Chicago, Illinois is also home to farmlands and one of the Midwest’s larger national forests. Right now, the 2016 5 oz ATB Shawnee National Forest Coin is available on Silver.com.
- Individual coins available in capsules, tubes of 10, and Monster Boxes of 100.
- Consists of five ounces of .999 fine silver.
- Bears a face value of $.25 (USD) backed by the federal government.
- 31st coin in the America the Beautiful series.
- Honors Shawnee National Forest.
Shawnee National Forest is one of the 155 national forests administered by the USDA Forest Service, and covers 265,000 acres of land in Southern Illinois where the Ozarks and Shawnee Hills collide. The forest was originally exhausted farmland that was purchased during the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The Civilian Conservation Corps planted countless pine trees to prevent soil erosion and rebuilt the forest over time.
America the Beautiful is a 56-coin series that was introduced in 2010. The series features five new coin designs released on an annual basis, with the program scheduled to run through 2021. When complete, the ATB series will represent each of the 50 US states, the District of Columbia, and the five overseas territories of the country.
On the reverse face of each coin is the image of the infamous camel hill from below. The rock formation gets its name from its resemblance to a seated camel, with a distinct head and hump visible. Engravings “Illinois,” “Shawnee,” and “E Pluribus Unum” are featured on this side.
The obverse face features the left-profile portrait of President George Washington that has been featured on American quarters since 1932. The image was created by John Flanagan, and based upon the 1786 sculpting of President Washington by William Cousins.
Most America the Beautiful quarters are produced at either the Denver Mint or Philadelphia Mint in the US Mint system. The San Francisco Mint produces special-edition coins for the series, but no regular production occurs on the West Coast.
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