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2003 Arkansas 24 Karat Gold Quarter - Denver
The fifth and final State Quarter of the year 2003 honors Arkansas. This is the 25th coin in the State Quarters series, so it also marks the exact half-way point in the collection that will eventually feature all 50 states. Arkansas is known as The Natural State. The coin depicts Rice Stalks, a diamond, and a mallard flying above the lake. The rice represents Arkansas agricultural heritage and the fact that it remains the leading producer of rice in the United States. The diamond symbolizes Arkansas as one of the few places in the U.S. where diamonds are mined. The lake and mallard represent the states sporting traditions.
Each uncirculated quarter is layered 7 times in pure 24 karat gold. Each coin is encapsulated to protect it's condition.
In December 1997, America's most adventurous coin program became a reality when President Clinton signed legislation authorizing the U.S. Mint to issue the innovative 50 State Quarters collection. Starting in January 1999, each of the 50 states in the Union will be honored on a unique Quarter Dollar commemorative coin. Five states will be featured each year, based on the order in which they ratified the Constitution or became states. Due to the aggressive minting schedule, each State Quarter will be minted for only about 10 weeks. As a result, mintages of each quarter only are to be just a fraction of the "normal" quarters are. Regular issue coins will be minted at both the Philadelphia and the Denver Mints. The mint marks can be found to the right of George Washington's portrait on the obverse: the small "P" indicates the Philadelphia Mint and the small "D" refers to the Denver.
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