Coin Specifications

Category: Silver Commemoratives (1892-1954)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 24,191
Obverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Reverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.5000g
Diameter: 30.6mm
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1893 ISABELLA 25C MS obverse 1893 ISABELLA 25C MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The 1893 Isabella Quarter was the second commemorative coin issued by the United States and was also created for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. The coin was produced at the insistence of a prominent woman of the Chicago social scene, Mrs. Potter Palmer, who was also on the Board of Lady Managers for the Exposition.

This Board, which was formed with help from Susan B. Anthony, was formed to ensure there would be female voices in the planning of the fair. Mrs. Palmer suggested that $10,000 of the funds appropriated to this board be issued in the form of commemorative quarters containing a female motif. After much back and forth between the Treasury Department and the board, the designs were finally chosen; a young Queen Isabella on the obverse and a woman kneeling while holding a distaff on the reverse. This coin was to be the first issued by the United States to depict a foreign Monarch.

Unfortunately for the ladies, the Columbian Exposition Half Dollar featuring Christopher Columbus on the obverse and the Santa Maria on the reverse, took much of the wind out of the sales of the Isabella quarter. The price undoubtedly didn’t help, as the quarter cost a dollar, the same as the Columbian half dollar. While the maximum mintage of 40,000 was struck, 15,809 were melted, for a total mintage of 24,191 not including assay pieces. This low mintage (only 1.6% of the number of commemorative halves distributed) accounts for the coins’ scarcity today.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 4/21/2015

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Base $ - - 260 310 340 365 400 425 440 490 530 625 925 2650 5250 10500 47500 65630 -
$ - - - - 460 510 590 675 1075 2900 7150 23000 -

The World Coin Price Guide is independently compiled by Krause Publications’ NumisMaster. NGC makes this information available to its website visitors as a free service, but in no way does the information provided represent NGC’s official opinion or policy. For example, varieties listed in the World Coin Price Guide may not necessarily be recognized by NGC. Please contact NGC Customer Service with any questions.

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Total Graded: 3644
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 62
High Grade: 68

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
6/11/2007 NGC MS 64   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 149, 154/Lot# 2658 $1,115.50
5/24/2009 PCGS MS 67   Goldberg May 24-27, 2009 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 53/Lot# 983 $9,200.00
8/11/2010 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2010 August Boston, MA Signature & Platinum Night ANA Coin Auction #1143, 1143/Lot# 11168 $546.25
5/15/2012 NGC AU 50   Teletrade Auction 3277, 3277/Lot# 1156 $122.00
10/17/2012 NGC MS 66   Stack's Bowers The November 2012 Baltimore Auction - US and World Lots - Live and Internet Only Sessions, 144/Lot# 5003 $3,421.25
9/8/2013 NGC MS 61   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 09/08/2013, 91/Lot# 136810 $368.50
2/27/2014 PCGS MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2014 February 27 - 28 & March 2 Mid-Winter ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Atlanta Session(4), 1203/Lot# 5650 $2,115.00
1/7/2015 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2015 January 7 - 12 FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Session(5), 1216/Lot# 6306 $4,935.00
3/31/2015 PCGS MS 64   Stack's Bowers March 2015 Baltimore, 6065/Lot# 33766 $600.43

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1893 ISABELLA 25C MS
1893 ISABELLA 25C MS Prooflike
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 69
Points: 10550
Owner: J & L
Grade: MS 67
Points: 6648
Owner: Gregg Bingham
View the Registry Image Gallery

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