Texas state quarter now in circulation

A Texas-size bash June 10 marked the debut of the state’s new, shiny ambassadors. Governor Rick Perry celebrated the launch of the new Texas quarter with celebrities, music, and free barbecue at the Texas State History Museum.

The Texas quarter is the third quarter of 2004, and the 28th in the 50 State Quarters Program. On December 29, 1845, Texas became the 28th state to be admitted into the Union.

The quarter’s reverse design incorporates an outline of the State with a star superimposed on the outline and the inscription, “The Lone Star State.” The lariat encircling the design is symbolic of the cattle and cowboy history of Texas, as well as the frontier spirit that tamed the land.

“This Texas quarter will serve as a timeless representation of our state’s proud and storied history,” Perry said. “When Americans reach into their pockets and purses, this quarter will remind all of the proud and rich history of the state that was once its own sovereign nation.”

Texas comes from the Indian word “tejas,” meaning friends or allies, and appropriately Texas’s motto is “Friendship.” Probably the two most recognized symbols of Texas are its unique shape and the lone star that is represented on the State flag.

The Texas flag design was approved in 1839 to symbolize the Republic of Texas and was adopted as the State flag in 1845. The simple design of a lone star and three bold stripes of red, white and blue represent bravery, purity and loyalty, respectively. Texas is the only state to have had six different flags fly over its land — Spain, France, Mexico, Republic of Texas, Confederate States of America and the United States of America.

On August 14, 2000, Governor George W. Bush appointed the 15-member Texas Quarter Dollar Coin Advisory Committee. The Committee authorized the Texas Numismatic Association to conduct a statewide design contest on its behalf.

Nearly 2,600 candidate design concepts were submitted in response to a statewide contest. From those design concepts, 17 finalists were selected by the Texas Numismatic Association and presented to the Texas Quarter Dollar Coin Advisory Committee for review.

The Committee further narrowed the submissions to the five designs that were most representative and emblematic of the State. Governor Rick Perry submitted the preferred design of the outline of Texas beneath the Lone Star and encircled by a lariat, which was approved by the Secretary of the Treasury on August 26, 2003.

North Houston Bank has several of the new quarters available for customers who would like to buy a roll.