Following the end of World War II, the production of United States coinage fell back a bit, as billions of new coins had been made since the start of the decade. This reduction in mintage can be seen among the 1946 Washington quarters, of which less than 70 million were made that year. Still, Washington quarters from that year are considered common and there were no major varieties or errors. Proof coins, which had been sent to hiatus after 1942 amid the war, would not resurface on the homefront until 1950, with the mint’s extra capacity for coin production rededicated to making medals that honor World War II soldiers.
Here’s a breakdown of mintages for 1946 Washington quarters:
1946, 53,436,000 minted; $7
1946-D, 9,072,800; $7
1946-S, 4,204,000; $7
*Values are for coins in Extremely Fine grade.
Any of those three issues can be bought in a grade of Mint State-63 for under $15, reflecting the common nature of coins of that vintage. Since there is so much inventory available for these coins, even in the middle uncirculated grades, its best to be selective and choose supremely nice specimens that will stand about above the crowd of lower-grade uncirculated material that dominates quarters from that era.