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Why Do Quarters Have Ridges?

by maureen


Why Do Quarters Have Ridges?

Money is part of our daily lives. Not a day can pass without us holding one. There are the big bucks, quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies. A noticeable difference with the dollar coins are the ridges. The quarters and dimes have one while the nickels and pennies don’t. Now, what is the reason for the ridges?

Quarters have ridges not for artistic reasons, but it serves a purpose. The ridges are actually called ‘reeding,. Reeds were first put on coins from way back, when coins were made of real silver or gold. It was when U.S. money depends on the value of metal they were made of. A fifty cent is as much as half the value of silver dollar and a quarter is one-fourth its value.

People in those days take advantage and shave off a part of the coins. With as much silver or gold they shave, and then they can sell it. Rims of coins are shaved all the way around it and sold to metal dealers. They earn from skimming the coins, which is supposedly not allowed. That was when the government, came up with ridges on quarters and even the dimes. The ones in lower value did not have ridges because they were not made by metals of value.

These days the coins are not anymore made in genuine metals, but the ridges are retained. They are kept because people are already used to how it looks. Also, it is not easy to counterfeit that way.

Another reason for keeping the ridges is for those who have visual problems. All coins basically look almost the same. Just like the dime and penny which are almost of the same size. With the ridges visually impaired individual will be able to tell the difference. With the ridges or not, money will always be a necessity.

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