For collectors, it is quite difficult to pick out which US Mint coins are the most sought after. Though that list may be endless, one of the undeniably iconic pieces ever produced by the US Mint was the Washington Quarter. Of course, this coin is still being produced today, but the coins today vary greatly from those that were minted back in the late 1940s.
Nowadays, collectors strive to get their hands on as many Washington Quarters as possible not only because of their lasting historical significance, but because they have silver content rarely found in US coins.
When it comes to coin collecting, most every collector will tell you that it is the condition of the coin that matters the most. With coins as old as the 1948 Washington Quarter, condition is always the subject of wonder because it can range from excellent to extremely poor. For this reason, you will see collectors pour over the surfaces of these coins looking for any and all imperfections.
Normally, it would be suggested that you send your coins away for grading by a professional company, but that is not always an option for everyone. Understanding this, we have provided below a small outline of the different characteristics of graded coins.
Uncirculated: Common sense will tell you that these coins are the ones that never had a chance to exchange hands. Having been kept in safekeeping since the time they were minted, Uncirculated coins are the most attractive and also the most expensive. Die-hard collectors will only add these coins to their collections.
Extremely Fine: Extremely Fine is a grade given to coins that were circulated, but only for a short period of time. Thanks to this, however, some light scratching will be present on the surface of the coin, though it will only able to be seen under very close inspection. All in all, these coins are still quite pricy and are the apple of every collectors’ eye.
Fine: Fine is a middle of the road grade given to coins that were circulated for quite some time. Despite this circulation, these coins have stood the test of time and appear half-dent considering their age. Though you will easily be able to make out the imagery and inscriptions present on the coin, the surface may have been smoothed a bit over the years.
Good: The most tattered coins are given the grade of Good. These coins were often circulated for years on end and incurred some heavy damage along the way. Heavy scratching, chipping, and many other imperfections will be found on these coins and that is why most collectors choose to stay away from them, that is, of course, unless they are attempting to furnish a complete collection.
When it comes to assigning price to coins such as the 1948 Washington Quarter, there are a number of different things you must first take into consideration. For one, you must understand that because multiple types of Quarter were produced annually, the scarcity associated with that specific coin type will drive the price to some degree. Secondly, condition is everything. Coins that have been well-preserved over the years are the same coins that will fetch a hefty price. Below is a small chart aimed at giving you a better idea of what you might be asked to pay for a 1948 Washington Quarter given its type and condition.
1948 Washington Quarter
|1948 Washington Quarter
|1948 Washington Quarter (D)
|1948 Washington Quarter (S)
|Source: Red Book