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The Ohio State Quarter

The Ohio State Quarter - #17 in Series The Ohio State Quarter is the second quarter to be released in 2002 and the 17th in the 50 State Quarters™ Program of the United States Mint.

Against an outline of the state, the images on the reverse of the quarter honor Ohio's contributions to aviation.

North Carolina may claim the Wright brothers as their own with the "First Flight" design of the North Carolina State Quarter but Ohioans know that the plane that flew at Kitty Hawk on December 17, 1903 was designed and built in the Wright brother's bicycle shop on 1927 W. Third Street in Dayton, Ohio.

The plane shown on the Ohio quarter represents a Wright brothers' 1905 Wright Flyer III, a superior design to the version that flew at Kitty Hawk. This Flyer was tested, perfected and flown on Huffman prairie, on land now part of the Wright-Patterson Air Force base, located near Dayton. The Wright Flyer III is often considered the first true airplane as this machine could take off, land, turn and bank. Though unrecognizable, the pilot of the plane on the Ohio State Quarter is "said" to be Wilbur in response to the historically correct representation of Orville in the Flyer on North Carolina's State Quarter. The Wright Flyer III is being restored at Dayton, Ohio's Carillon Historical Park where it's been stored since 1950.

Jumping into the present, the design of the Ohio State Quarter also represents the contributions Ohio has made to the United States space efforts with the image of a suited astronaut.

John Glenn, from New Concord, Ohio, was the first American to orbit the earth when he circled the globe three times in the Friendship 7 orbiter on February 20, 1962. Neil Armstrong, from Wapakoneta, Ohio, was the first man to walk on the moon, on July 20, 1969, during the Apollo 11 mission.

Ohio proudly boasts that 19 of its men and women have been sent into space. Ohio's other astronauts include James Lovell (Cleveland) of the ill-fated and miraculous Apollo 13 mission and Judith Resnik (Akron) who died in the tragic 1986 explosion of the space shuttle Challenger.

Astronauts Nancy Currie and Richard Linnehan carried four new Ohio state quarters with them on the Space Shuttle Columbia's mission (March 1, 2002) to replace the camera on the Hubble Telescope. Currie considers Troy, Ohio to be her hometown, and Linnehan received the degree of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Two of the quarters are for the astronauts to keep. The other two will be displayed in the U.S. Air Force Museum in Dayton, Ohio.

The inscription on the quarter is "Birthplace of Aviation Pioneers." This inscription is not the original that was submitted to the U.S. Mint by Governor Bob Taft. He submitted a design with the words "Birthplace of Aviation" inscribed. The U.S. Mint was concerned that the original text would confuse people when compared with the North Carolina State Quarter and changed the text to read "Birthplace of Aviation Pioneers."

The design concept was arrived at through a statewide contest that was launched by Governor Bob Taft. An 11-member committee (Ohio Commemorative Quarter Program Committee) of the Ohio Bicentennial Commission, along with Governor Taft, narrowed the submissions down to five concepts; Ohio State Symbols, the Ohio Statehouse, Aviation, Ohio Inventions and the Battle of Lake Erie. The Governor, along with the U.S. Mint, made the final decision on the design.

Source: United States Mint,, January 17, 2002.

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