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Tennessee State Quarter

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Tennessee State Quarter
The Volunteer State
Capital: Nashville
Statehood: June 01, 1796

Tennessee State Quarter

The Tennessee State Quarter was the first state quarter issued in 2002 and the 16th in the series which was authorized by the 50 States Commemorative Coin Program Act.

The release date for the TN State Quarter was January 2, 2002 and the theme chosen for the design was "Musical Heritage.".

The elements of the design include a musical score, three instruments and three stars which represent the three areas of the state that are famous for three distinct styles of music:

  • the Appalachian music of the eastern part of the state is represented by the fiddle
  • western Tennessee's blues music is represented by the trumpet
  • the famous country music of Nashville, in central Tennessee, is represented by a guitar

Design concepts were submitted by citizens, students and artisits of Tennessee in a contest announced by Governor Don Sundquist on March 27, 2000.

Of the almost 1,000 designs submitted, three were chosen by a committee appointed by the governor and sent to the Mint for approval. Governor Don Sundquist made the final design choice.

Other design concepts considered, other than "Musical Heritage" were:

  • Ratification of the 19th Amendment
  • Sequoyah, known for creating the Cherokee writing system

Below is a table showing the design specifications and mintages of the Tennessee State Quarter.

Type Tennessee State Quarter
Obverse - Original design by John Flanagan

Modification for state quarter program by William Cousins

Note: The modification moved some of the wording from the reverse to the obverse to leave the reverse available for the state's design.
Reverse - Each state theme was proposed, and approved, by the governor of the state. Final design was designed by Shawn Stookey and engraved by Donna Weaver, whose initials are above the right end of the banner containing the words "Musical Heritage".

(Both obverse designer's initials - John Flanagan and William Cousins - are on the obverse of the coin at the truncation of Washington's neck.)
Years Minted 2002
Weight 5.67 grams
Composition outer layers of 75% copper and 25% nickel bonded to an inner core of pure copper
Diameter 24.3 mm
Edge reeded
Mints and Mintages
San Francisco
P - 361,600,000
D - 286,468,000
S - 3,084,245 Proofs only
S - 892,229 Silver Proofs

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