America the Beautiful Quarters Part 1: Hot Springs National Park
Hot Springs National Park is located near the city of Hot Springs, Arkansas and is the first quarter in the America the Beautiful line of quarters, first minted April 19, 2010. The reverse side features the park's headquarters plus a picture of a fountain, emblematic of the park's namesake features, the geothermal springs that caused Hernando de Soto to call the area "Valley of the Vapors" in the sixteenth century. The area had been a mecca for those looking for healing for arthritis and other kinds of illnesses and bathing regimens were commonly prescribed int he early days of Hot Springs. It was formally incorporated into a park in 1921 becoming the first bit of land set aside for public use by the United States Government. The current park has no less that eight houses for bathing, three still operating, all representative of the architecture of the Gilded Age - the 1870s and 1880s. The quarter also contains the emblem of the National Park Service, the small shield to the right.
The quarter in its final form was chosen from four designs by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. The design was created by Don Everhart and sculpted by Joseph Menna.
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