The third quarter of 2006 honors Colorado, the 38th quarter in the United States Mint's 50 State Quarters® Program. The state's name is from the Spanish word for "colored red," referring to the reddish mud in the Colorado River (one of the many colors of "Colorful Colorado"). Above the "Colorful Colorado" banner on the coin, the rugged Rocky Mountains—which cross through Colorado—are shown. One of these mountains is Grand Mesa, the largest flat-top mountain in the world. On this 10,000-foot-high mesa you can find more than 200 lakes and many miles of hiking trails.
Many nations have flown their flags over parts of Colorado before it was a state, including France, Spain, Mexico, and the Republic of Texas. When the United States bought Louisiana, part of Colorado was included. Between then and statehood, this land changed hands among six different US territories.
The boundaries of the Colorado Territory were set when the Territory was created on February 28, 1861, and that's the shape of Colorado today. The "1876" inscribed on the coin is the year Colorado joined the Union, becoming our Nation's 38th state. Because 1876 was also the centennial (100th anniversary) of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Colorado is nicknamed "The Centennial State."