The second new quarter design of 2004, and 27th in the 50 State Quarters Program, honors Florida, which joined the United States on March 3, 1845. This state’s chosen design features a space shuttle and a Spanish galleon, and links the state to the phrase “Gateway to Discovery.”
Florida is the southernmost state in our country (besides Hawaii) — the state with the highest average temperature and the second longest shoreline. Tourists are as happy to discover its beaches and water activities as Ponce de Leon was in 1513 to discover the tropical beauty of the land he named “Pascua Florida” (meaning “Flowery Easter”).
Florida is also the state from which many missions are launched to explore space. Most U.S. space missions blast off from the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral near Orlando. So, from the New World to new worlds in space, Florida is truly the Gateway to Discovery.
A 16th century Spanish ship arrives and a 20th century space shuttle leaves the land of Florida.
Nickname: The Sunshine State
Statehood: March 3, 1845