The Arkansas quarter's reverse features
The Arkansas quarter is the fifth and final quarter of 2003, and the 25th in
the 50 State Quarters® Program. Arkansas was admitted into the Union on June
15, 1836. Arkansas was acquired through the Louisiana Purchase and later became
the Arkansas Territory before gaining statehood. The Arkansas quarter design
bears the image of rice stalks, a diamond and a mallard gracefully flying above
It is fitting that the "Natural State," Arkansas's official nickname, chose
images of natural resources. Arkansas has an abundance of clear streams, rivers
and lakes. In fact, Arkansas has more than 600,000 acres of natural lakes.
Arkansas is also known for its sportsmanship and boasts mallard hunting as a
main attraction for hunters across the nation. Visitors to Arkansas can search
Crater of Diamonds State Park for precious gems including, of course, diamonds.
The mine at Crater of Diamonds State Park reportedly is the oldest diamond mine
in North America, and the only one in the United States open to the
public-visitors get to keep what they find. Visitors can also experience "Rice
Fever" in Arkansas-just the way W.H. Fuller did when he grew the first
commercially successful rice crop in Arkansas. Soon after, thousands of acres
of the Grand Prairie were changed to cultivate rice, and Arkansas became the
leading producer of the grain in the United States.
In January 2001, Governor Mike Huckabee announced the Arkansas Quarter
Challenge as a statewide competition. A two-week media tour promoting the
Challenge resulted in 9,320 entries. After several rounds of elimination, the
Governor forwarded three concepts to the United States Mint, including
Arkansas' natural resources and the State Capitol building. The United States
Mint provided four candidate designs based on the concepts to the Governor from
which he chose the natural resources design.
To learn more about Arkansas, visit http://www.state.ar.us/