Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust, Coin Type from United States - detailed information

Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust, Coin Type from United States (issued 1815 - 1838)
Coin TypeQuarter Dollar, Capped Bust

The Quarter Dollar is a United States coin worth 25 cents. It has been produced on and off since 1796 and consistently since 1831.

The Capped Bust design (also known as the Liberty Cap Quarter) was the second type of quarter dollar issued into circulation, replacing the Draped Bust quarter in 1815. It features a new eagle reverse on which the value is given as "25 cents" again and not as "quarter dollar" as on later coins. The obverse design - common for the half dime, dime, quarter and half dollar of the time - shows a new concept of the portrait of Liberty where she wears a soft cap; it was designed by John Reich and modified by Chief Engraver of the Mint, William Kneass. It proved to be a popular design and lasted from 1807 to 1839 on the half dollar, 1815 to 1838 on the quarter, 1809 to 1837 on the dime, and 1829 to 1837 on the half dime. All four of these coin were struck in 89.24% silver and 10.76% copper initially; the quarter changed to 90% silver in 1837.

After 1828, there was a change in design which is minor according to some numismatic sources, or major according to others which classify the later coins as a new type. Earlier coins have a diameter of approximately 27 mm, which varies slightly. With new equipment installed at the Philadelphia Mint (which is the only mint where these coins were struck), a uniform diameter could be maintained; it was reduced to 24.3 mm. The design was changed to a wider border and a smaller date, and the motto on the reverse was removed.

After 1838, the type was replaced by the Seated Liberty design. In later years, there were also changes in composition (the quarter is now made of copper-nickel), but these coins have never been demonetised and are still legal tender. This, of course, is of academic interest only, as their numismatic value is enormously higher than their face value.

United States / Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust - obverse photo

The obverse of the coin shows a portrait of Liberty facing to the left; her hair is covered by a cloth cap secured by a band inscribed LIBERTY, with tresses flowing down to her shoulder. Her neckline is draped with a gown, secured with a brooch at the shoulder.

Around the rim, thirteen stars (seven to the left and six to the right) representing the original 13 states.

Below the portrait, the date of issue: [year].

The rim is beaded.

Obverse Inscription ************* [year]
United States / Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust - reverse photo

The main device on the reverse is an eagle, perched, with open wings, looking to left. On its breast, the Union Shield at centre, with thirteen vertical stripes, white and red, with a blue horizontal bar on top. The colours are represented by heraldic hatching (thin lines indicating the colour - horizontal stripes for blue, vertical for red, no stripes for white). From the eagle's perspective, it holds a bundle of three arrows in its left talon, and an olive branch in its right talon.

The arrows and olive branch together symbolise that the United States has "a strong desire for peace, but will always be ready for war". The eagle has its head turned towards the olive branch, to symbolise a preference for peace.

Around above, a scroll inscribed with the motto E PLURIBUS UNUM ("Out of Many, One").

Around the outer rim, the name of the country: UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Below the eagle, the abbreviated value and denomination 25 C. (Twenty-five Cents).

The rim is beaded.

Reverse Inscription UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 25 C.
EdgeMilledEdge InscriptionNone
Coin Type: Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust - (19) Coins
Coin NameMintageSymbolLegend
Quarter Dollar 1815 Capped Bust 89,235 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1815
Quarter Dollar 1818 Capped Bust 361,174 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1818
Quarter Dollar 1819 Capped Bust 144,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1819
Quarter Dollar 1820 Capped Bust 127,444 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1820
Quarter Dollar 1821 Capped Bust 216,851 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1821
Quarter Dollar 1822 Capped Bust 64,080 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1822
Quarter Dollar 1823 Capped Bust 17,800 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1823
Quarter Dollar 1824 Capped Bust 168,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1824
Quarter Dollar 1825 Capped Bust unknown Liberty, Portrait ************* 1825
Quarter Dollar 1827 Capped Bust 4,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1827
Quarter Dollar 1828 Capped Bust 102,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1828
Quarter Dollar 1831 Capped Bust 398,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1831
Quarter Dollar 1832 Capped Bust 320,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1832
Quarter Dollar 1833 Capped Bust 156,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1833
Quarter Dollar 1834 Capped Bust 286,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1834
Quarter Dollar 1835 Capped Bust 1,952,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1835
Quarter Dollar 1836 Capped Bust 472,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1836
Quarter Dollar 1837 Capped Bust 252,400 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1837
Quarter Dollar 1838 Capped Bust 366,000 Liberty, Portrait ************* 1838
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Quarter Dollar, Capped Bust: Details
CountryUnited States
CurrencyUS Dollar
Sub-type ofQuarter Dollar
Face Value25 (x Cent)
Material0.892 Silver
DesignerJohn Reich, William Kneass
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
OrientationCoin Alignment (Axis 6)
Size27.000 mm
Mass6.740 g