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Alabama

The Alabama QuarterThe Alabama quarter is the second quarter of 2003, and the 22nd in the 50 State Quarters® Program. Alabama became the 22nd state to be admitted into the Union on December 14, 1819. The Alabama quarter design features an image of Helen Keller with her name in English, and in a reduced-size version of braille. The Alabama quarter is the first U.S. circulating coin to feature braille. An Alabama long leaf pine branch and magnolias grace the sides of the design, and a "Spirit of Courage" banner underlines the central image.

Helen Keller was born at "Ivy Green" in Tuscumbia, Alabama, in 1880. When she was a small child, an illness destroyed her sight and hearing and, consequently, depriving her of the senses by which we normally learn to speak. Despite her disabilities, Helen Keller learned to speak and read using the raised and manual alphabets, as well as Braille. Miss Keller also graduated with honors, receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from Radcliffe. She went on to publish numerous books, articles and essays. Helen Keller lived out her life addressing social issues for disabled persons and women. Every year at "Ivy Green," a weeklong celebration is held to commemorate her lifetime of accomplishments and her "Spirit of Courage."

In January 2001, Governor Don Siegelman announced a statewide competition for Alabama schools to submit concepts for the Alabama quarter. Of the thousands of concepts submitted, Governor Siegelman forwarded three to the United States Mint: Helen Keller, Alabama's role in social movements, and Alabama's social and economic history. The United States Mint returned five candidate designs to the Governor's office where the final selection of Helen Keller, "Spirit of Courage," was made.

Provided by the U.S. Mint

Website: www.usmint.gov


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