How long have people been collecting coins? About a long as coins have been made — around 600 BC to 800 BC. In addition to a brief history of coins and info about the history of coin collecting, see how the 50 State Quarters program sparked a renewed interest in coin collecting in the late 1990s. Collecting the U.S. quarters led many to start collecting coins of other types as well. Here we review the ups and downs of coin collecting through the years, and how it all comes back to the U.S. quarter.