The second numismatic United States Mint quarter product released this year was the 2010 US Mint America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set.
This five-coin set is similar to the clad version with the exception that each quarter is struck in 90% silver and 10% copper. Combined, the silver 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters include 0.904 troy ounces of silver.
The U.S. Mint released the set on May 27, 2010. They are priced at $32.95, which is $3 more than last year’s silver quarters set.
The 2010 set features the first 5 of 56 quarters to be released in 11 years that honor National Parks and National Sites. This year’s quarters depict themes on the reverse side featuring:
- Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas
- Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming
- Yosemite National Park in California
- Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona
- Mount Hood National Forest in Oregon
The Mint generally sells several hundred thousand of the silver sets each year. Given that their silver content makes them more expensive to produce, they cost more to purchase than the clads. That is one reason their sales figures are typically lower than some of the other annual sets the Mint offers.
For a perspective, the 2009 District of Columbia and U.S. Territories Quarters Proof Sets went on sale March 23, 2009. Fourteen months later (as of May 23, 2010) collectors purchased 280,354 of them.
"Unlike circulating coins, proof coins display brilliant backgrounds, with frosted, sculpted foregrounds," the US Mint states on its Web site in describing the coins. "Proof coins receive the highest quality strike possible, and can be distinguished by their sharpness of detail and brilliant, mirror-like surface."
Every quarter’s obverse, or heads side, includes the "S" mint mark, indicating they were manufactured at the U.S. Mint facility in San Francisco.
When available, the sets may be purchased directly from the Mint’s website at http://www.usmint.gov/.