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Michigan State Seal

Seal and Nickname

The Michigan State Seal
The Great Seal of the State of Michigan serves as a symbol of authenticity which verifies that government documents and papers of state are official and legal in the "Great Lakes State". The Michigan 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 Michigan state seal and is expressed in Latin as "Si quaeris peninsulam amoenam circumspice" which means:

"If you seek a pleasant peninsula,
look about you"

The Michigan State Seal design features three Latin mottos.

Michigan State Seal


Facts on the Michigan State Seal
The symbolism, history and emblems of the seal are described in this article with fast facts and information. 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 Michigan State Seal:

Michigan State Seal Facts

Fact 1: The first seal used was that of the Northwest Territories (see info below)

Fact 2: State seal adopted in on June 2, 1835
Fact 3: Designed by Lewis Cass (1782-1866), Michigan's second (non-acting) Territorial governor
Fact 4: The original design was inspired by the seal used by the Hudson Bay Fur Company.

Hudson Bay Fur Company seal

Hudson Bay Fur Company Seal


Michigan & the Territory of the United States Northwest of the River Ohio

Northwest Territories seal

The Territory of the United States Northwest of the River Ohio (the Old Northwest) covered more than 260,000 square miles and consisted of the modern states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, as well as northeastern Minnesota.

The first recorded use of The seal of the Northwest Territory (the Old Northwest) was in a proclamation made on July 26, 1788. Congress passed legislation on May 8, 1792, that directed the U.S. Secretary of State to "provide proper seals for the several and respective public offices in the said Territories". The Great Michigan state seal was introduced when the state was admitted to the Union.

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

The American Eagle symbolizes the superior authority and jurisdiction or control of the United States
The eagle holds three arrows and an olive branch with 13 olives in its claws. The arrows show that the nation is ready to defend its principles and the olive branch symbolizes peace.
The shield is flanked by an elk on the left and a moose on the right, both are symbols of Michigan
The shield depicts the landscape with the sun rising over a lake and peninsula with the rays symbolizing a bright future.
The picture of the man shows him holding a long gun with a raised hand representing peace but the ability to defend his rights
The Michigan seal is kept and used as required by the Constitution and laws of the state.

The Major Industries of Michigan Seal in 1876
This is a flyer depicting the 1876 design of the Michigan State seal. The images surrounding the seal reflect the importance of the industries to the economy at the time. The mining activities and the importance of the copper mining industry are clearly featured. The picture of the steamboat reflects this major form of transportation in the state. The invention of steam power made it much easier to travel along the rivers. The steamboat had a steam engine which turned a paddle wheel in back of the boat, some steamboats had two paddle wheels on each side of the steamboat. These paddle wheels powered the boats up and down river. Steamboats could go downstream twice as fast as the flatboats that they replaced. A steamboat could also go upstream, which was a major improvement over a flatboat.


Michigan State Seal for Kids

Meaning & recent pictures of the Michigan Great Seal
"If you seek a pleasant peninsula, look about you"
Find the meaning of the Great Michigan Seal
Meaning, History, Symbols and Origin for kids
Meaning, origin and history of the Michigan Seal
Interesting facts & picture of Great Michigan Seal
Official Nickname "Great Lakes State"
Meaning of the Seal for schools, kids and children

Michigan State Seal for Kids

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