On Monday, January 10, 2022, the U.S. Mint has announced the release of Maya Angelou quarters making Angelou the first Black woman to appear on a U.S. quarter. Maya Angelou was an author, actress, screenwriter, dancer, poet, and civil rights activist. Although she wore all of those hats, most people know her for her literary works. She is notably known for her 1969 memoir, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings that details her childhood and young adult years.
Quarters with her image on the back will be available from now until 2025. This historic moment was made possible through the work of California Democrat Representative Barbara Lee. Lee was influential in introducing the Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act of 2020 that paved the way for the U.S. Mint’s American Women Quarters Program that Angelou is featured in.
The first coin of the American Women Quarters™ Program is here—the Maya Angelou Quarter! Learn about honoree Maya Angelou and #HerQuarter in our press release at https://t.co/yYzGJpXQDD. Look for it in your change. @USTreasury @smithsonian @womenshistory @DrMayaAngelou @WCPInst pic.twitter.com/GVUpcnbszq— United States Mint (@usmint) January 10, 2022
The U.S. Mint’s American Women Quarters Program
The U.S. Mint’s American Women Quarters Program is a four year program that will feature five inspiring women on U.S. quarters. The front of the quarter (also referred to as “heads”) will feature a portrait of the first U.S. President, George Washington. The back of the quarter (also referred to as “tails”) will feature one of the five women. Each of the women selected for the program have positively impacted U.S. politics, civil rights, humanities and STEM.
The inaugural year of the program will feature Maya Angelou, Dr. Sally Ride, Nina Otero-Warren, Anna May Wong, and Wilma M. Head over to The Mint for a quick synopsis about the women.
On Wednesday, October 6, 2021 The U.S. Mint released designs of the five quarters on Twitter along with a tweet that read: “We are pleased to announce the designs for the 2022 coins in the American Women Quarters Program, honoring the achievements of Maya Angelou, Dr. Sally Ride, Nina Otero-Warren, Anna May Wong, and Wilma M”.
🥁 We are pleased to announce the designs for the 2022 coins in the American Women Quarters™ Program, honoring the achievements of Maya Angelou, Dr. Sally Ride, Wilma Mankiller, Nina Otero-Warren and Anna May Wong: https://t.co/D54knKPbvQ #HerQuarter @smithsonian @womenshistory pic.twitter.com/3p7XGM9Ok4— United States Mint (@usmint) October 6, 2021
The Maya Angelou Quarter
The Maya Angelou quarter features a portrait of the first U.S. President, George Washington on the front of the quarter and an image of Maya Angelou on the back of the quarter.
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