The Connecticut quarter's reverse celebrates "The Charter Oak" tree, which proved to be a good hiding place.
The Connecticut quarter, the last 50 State Quarters™ Program coin issued in 1999, features "The Charter Oak": an integral part of Connecticut's heritage and existence. If not for the famed "Charter Oak", Connecticut - and this country in general - might be a very different place than it is today!
On the night of October 31, 1687, Connecticut's Charter was put to a test. A British representative for King James II, challenged Connecticut's government structure and demanded its surrender. In the middle of the heated discussion, with the Charter on the table between the opposing parties, the candles were mysteriously snuffed out, darkening the room. When visibility was reestablished, the Connecticut Charter had vanished. Heroic Captain Joseph Wadsworth saved the Charter from the hands of the British and concealed it in the safest place he could find - in a majestic white oak. This famous tree, "The Charter Oak," finally fell during a great storm on August 21, 1856.
In a press release issued February 3, 1998, Governor John G. Rowland announced the Connecticut Coin Design Competition. More than 112 citizens ranging from ages six to 87 from 46 cities and towns submitted design concept entries to the Connecticut Commission on the Arts. Nineteen entrants submitted renditions of the Charter Oak and five of those were selected and forwarded to the U.S. Mint. Following the required review and approval process, three designs were returned to Governor Rowland for consideration. The Connecticut Commemorative Coin Design Competition Review Committee, with the governor's approval, unanimously selected the Connecticut circulating quarter design. Twenty-three people from 18 towns received honorable mentions for their design concepts.
Provided by the U.S. Mint