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Washington Quarter Obverse Moto Varieties of 1934

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Washington Quarter Obverse Moto Varieties of 1934

On October 24, 2018, Posted by , In Varities Links and Articles,WashingtonQuarter, With No Comments

In 1934, two distinct obverse hub changes were made to strengthen the the motto IN GOD WE TRUST. The new designs are simply named “Medium Motto” and “Heavy Motto.” This created a total of three different design varieties for the 1934 P; The light motto (the original design used on the 1932 issues), medium motto and heavy motto. For the 1934 D issues only the medium and heavy motto designs were used, creating only two possible varieties for the 1934 D.

Light Motto

To begin you should understand the original motto characteristics, also known as the Light Motto. Below are some pictures to help demonstrate this first design. This motto exists on all of the the 1932 P, D and S issues, and on some 1934 P issues.


Notice the Light Motto design letters are very mushy. The middle vertex of the W in WE seems to have no peak and lacks definition.




Medium Motto


In the medium motto design you can see the whole thing is strengthened (looks higher in relief) and the peak of the middle vertex in the W of WE is well defined and peaks below the Left and Right legs.


Heavy Motto


In the Heavy Motto design, again, the whole design is strengthened and the middle vertex in the letter W of WE peaks above the right and left legs




Summary of available varieties

All Three motto designs are available on the 1934 P, however the 1934 D issues only include the Medium and Heavy varieties. And, since there were no quarters minted at San Francisco in 1934, there are no motto design variety examples for a 1934 S.

In 1935 for some reason the mint reverted back to the Medium Motto hub and this was used as the standard for all coinage of that year. In 1936 the mint decided to make the Heavy Motto design the standard for all coins.

Since I am a visual learner I created the below table to help me visualize the varieties possible for the 1934 quarters with regard to the motto design changes.

Light Motto Medium Motto Heavy Motto
1934 P  X  X  X
1934 D —-
 X  X

More information on the Motto Design Changes of 1934


Image Credits for all images: Member OcalaFlorida from forum post 1934-P Washington Quarter – Light, Medium & Heavy Motto Varieties

Other information pulled from The Official Red Book: A Guide Book of Washington and State Quarters

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