Washington quarters, a series featuring mainly low coin values, are affordable for collectors and investors on nearly any budget and are therefore widely collected. The series is also appealing to bullion investors, as all Washington quarters minted from the inception of the series in 1932 through 1964 were struck in a 90% silver composition.
By and large, coin values for low-grade, common-date pieces are under $7 each and are basically tied to silver bullion prices. Only high-end silver Washington quarters and scarcer dates boast heavier prices. In fact, the Washington quarter, which was designed by John Flanagan, has just two expensive, regular-issue key dates, with those being the 1932-D and 1932-S. These pieces have coin values ranging from around $120 in Good-4 to more than $1,000 for uncirculated specimens. There are also several doubled-die silver Washington quarters. Coin values for silver Washington quarter doubled dies range from as low as $20 to $100 for circulated specimens and can climb into the thousands for mint state examples.
Silver Washington quarters, given their broad pricing spectrum and relatively wide availability, are ideal for all types of coin collectors. Most Washington quarter enthusiasts focus their attention on collecting one example of each date and mintmark combination, and often acquire specimens in the lower circulated grades. As the collector progressively upgrades his or her Washington quarter collection, he or she may advance into uncirculated issues. Bullion investors, meanwhile, will only be concerned with buying low-end circulated Washington quarters of the most common dates. Coin values for upper-end Washington quarters are much higher than bullion values for those same coins and thus why bullion investors will normally just stick to the low-end, or junk silver, material.