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Kentucky State Seal

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The Kentucky State Seal
The Great Seal of the State of Kentucky serves as a symbol of authenticity which verifies that government documents and papers of state are official and legal in the "Bluegrass State". The Kentucky state seal is also an emblem that is representative of the state's origins, history, character and ideals. The following motto, reflecting the spirit of the state, is also incorporated in the Kentucky state seal:

"United we stand,
divided we fall"

The Kentucky state seal identifies government buildings and officials and is a centerpiece for the Kentucky state flag. The symbolism, history and emblems of the seal are described in this article with fast facts and information.

Kentucky State Seal


Facts on the Kentucky State Seal
The men who designed the Great State seals were educated in the classics and were knowledgeable of art history and symbolism of heraldry. Fast, fun facts about the history and design of the Kentucky State Seal:

Kentucky State Seal Facts

Fact 1: Provision for its creation  made during the first session of the Kentucky General Assembly on December 20, 1792

Fact 2: Designed by Lexington silversmith David Humphries
Fact 3: Adopted in December of 1792.
Fact 4: The image has undergone several variations

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Description, Symbols, Icons and Emblems of the Kentucky State Seal
The description and meaning of the symbols, icons and emblems are as follows:

The outer section of the Kentucky seal displays the words the Commonwealth of Kentucky & foliage of the State Flower Goldenrod (Solidago altissima)

Frontiersman and the Statesman Kentucky

Kentucky officially uses the name "Commonwealth" emphasizing that they have a "government based on the common consent of the people" as opposed to government legitimized through their earlier royal colony status of Great Britain.

The words of the state motto encircle the figures of two men shaking hands and displaying  a gesture of a friendly greeting

One man is dressed in the buckskin clothes favored by the early pioneers or frontiersmen. 

Buckskins consisting of a jacket and leggings were made from buckskin, a soft sueded leather from the hide of deer and trimmed with a fringe

The other man wears more formal clothing, fashionable in the early 1800's

The tailored knee length dress suit with a tapering cutaway 'swallow-tail' jacket. The trousers had understraps that buckled underneath the instep which kept the pants kept taut and the stripe added a military touch to the suit

There is speculation that the man in the buckskin is the famous pioneer and explorer Daniel Boone (1734-1820) and the man in the suit is the Kentucky statesman  Henry Clay (1777-1852)

Shaking hands, they are uniting the colonial and pioneer aspects of the state. In heraldry a hand symbolizes a pledge of faith, sincerity, and justice. Two right hands conjoined (a handshake) represent union and alliance

The Seal of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, 1876
This is a flyer depicting the 1876 design of the seal. Two statesmen, or politicians, are featured in the center and the pioneers, or frontiersmen, are depicted separately exploring the lands.

Seal of the commonwealth of Kentucky, 1876

Kentucky State Seal for Kids

Meaning & recent pictures of the Great Seal
"United we stand, divided we fall" motto
Find the meaning of the Great State Seal
Seal Meaning, History, Symbols and Origin for kids
Meaning, symbols, design, description and history
Interesting facts & picture of the Great State Seal
Official Nickname "Bluegrass State"
Meaning of the Kentucky Seal for schools & kids

Kentucky State Seal for Kids

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