Georgia’s Cumberland Island National Seashore is featured on the U.S. Mint’s latest commemorative coin, released on Friday. Cumberland is Georgia’s largest barrier island, with nearly 10,000 acres of designated wilderness and the largest remaining maritime forest in the United States.
The new quarter features a snowy egret perched on a branch at the edge of a marsh. Gary Ingraham is the National Park Service superintendent on Cumberland. He said it’s an iconic image; “It's a native bird, it's an absolutely beautiful bird and it's a bird that draws a lot of attention.” The mint consulted with the Georgia governor’s office to select Cumberland. The coin is part of the "America the Beautiful" series. David Kyler, the executive director of the Center for a Sustainable Coast, said environmental advocates hope the coin will, "spread awareness of the island and location and, through visitation, build support for even stronger enforcement in public policy to honor the law to protect Cumberland Island.” The National Parks Service said it is working with owners of the island's 800 acres of private land to subdivide for a new housing development. A parks service spokesperson said they want to find a balance between preservation of Cumberland's natural resources and private development.