Quarters From One U.S. State and Year Could Be Worth $6,000. Are You a (Very Lucky) Accidental Collector?

It's unclear if their creation was intentional, but they're worth a whole lot anyway.

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By Amanda Breen

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Check your couch cushions or wherever you keep your spare change — because you just might be the owner of a very specific quarter from 2004 that's worth thousands of dollars.

That's right: Wisconsin state quarters from the 50 State Quarters Program display a limited-edition design that increases in value if there are noticeable variations in that design, according to coin collectors, Fox Business reported.

Related: Rare Penny Sells for $1.1 Million. Do You Have One? | Entrepreneur

So what are you looking for, exactly? The front of the coin shows a cow, a peeled husk of corn and a sliced wheel of cheese along with inscriptions denoting the state, the year Wisconsin joined the union (1848) and Wisconsin's state motto — the word "Forward."

Additionally, the specific coins in question have a small design anomaly that features an extra leaf, pointing up or down on the corn husk. Collectors are divided over if the difference was intentional.

"The normal cause would be metal shavings accidentally lodged in the die, creating a gouge from the coin striking action," Littleton Coin Company wrote on its website. "However, because roughly equal quantities exist of the two varieties, some experts speculate that the extra leaves were deliberately created by someone at the Denver Mint — as the odds of such a similar event occurring on the same location on two different dies are astronomical."

Related: How the Official Coin Maker of 'Game of Thrones' and 'Lord of the Rings' Got Started

One of the 2004 Wisconsin quarters with an additional "low leaf" was auctioned for a record $6,000 in January 2020; one with an extra "high leaf" was auctioned for a record $2,530 in July 2006, per Fox Business.

Amanda Breen

Entrepreneur Staff

Features Writer

Amanda Breen is a features writer at Entrepreneur.com. She is a graduate of Barnard College and recently completed the MFA in writing at Columbia University, where she was a news fellow for the School of the Arts during the 2020-2021 academic year. 

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