2009 State Quarters
Although the 50 State Quarters program concluded in 2008, the United States Mint continued to celebrate the nation's diverse history and culture with the District of Columbia and U.S. Territories Quarters Program in 2009. This series released six new coin designs featuring the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. The first quarter of 2009 honored the District of Columbia, showcasing an image of Duke Ellington, the legendary jazz composer and pianist, reflecting the district's rich musical and cultural heritage. The second quarter paid tribute to Puerto Rico, depicting a sentry box overlooking the sea at San Juan National Historic Site, along with the territory's hibiscus flower, representing Puerto Rico's vibrant history and natural beauty. The third quarter celebrated Guam, featuring an outline of the territory and its historic latte stone pillars, symbolizing Guam's unique culture and ancient Chamorro heritage. The fourth quarter, commemorating American Samoa, showcased the Samoan fruit bat and a traditional Samoan design, reflecting the territory's distinctive wildlife and rich cultural traditions. The fifth quarter honored the U.S. Virgin Islands, depicting a bananaquit bird, the Yellow Cedar flower, and a Tyre Palm tree, celebrating the territory's lush tropical landscapes and diverse flora and fauna. Finally, the sixth quarter issued in 2009 recognized the Northern Mariana Islands, showcasing a limestone latte stone and a Carolinian canoe, representing the territory's ancient cultural history and its strong connection to the ocean. These quarters were minted in limited quantities, capturing the interest of collectors and the general public, while fostering a deeper appreciation for the nation's extensive and diverse heritage.