Welcome to the Cowboy State! Wyoming and Texas are both closely associated with cowboys. Both states call rodeo their official state sport. However, Wyoming is nicknamed the Cowboy State, and it backs it up with a familiar trademarked image of a cowboy mounted on a bucking horse. (Continued below)
|Nicknames & Slogans|
|Nicknames||The Cowboy State, Equality State|
|Symbols of State|
|Flower||Indian paintbrush (Castilleja linariifolia)||1917||>|
|Tree||plains cottonwood (Populus sargentii)||1947||>|
|Grass||western wheatgrass (Pascopyrum smithii)||2007||>|
|Shrub||Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata wyomingensi)||2016||>|
|Bird||western meadowlark (Sturnella neglecta)||1927||>|
|Mammal||bison (Bison bison)||1985||>|
|Reptile||horned toad (Phrynosoma douglasii)||1993||>|
|Amphibian||blotched salamander (Ambystoma mavortium spp.)||2019||>|
|Fish||cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarkii)||1987||>|
|Butterfly||Sheridan’s green hairstreak butterfly (Callophrys sheridani)||2009||>|
|Fossil †||Knightia (Knightia)||1987||>|
|Dinosaur †||Triceratops (Triceratops)||1994||>|
|Registered Trademark||bucking horse and rider||>|
|Coin||Sacajawea golden dollar||2004||>|
|Code||Code of the West||2010||>|
|Song||Wyoming Where I Belong||2019||>|
Texas raises the bar with an official hat, footwear, and tie (cowboy hat, cowboy boots, and bolo tie). However, Western wear is probably a more familiar sight in Wyoming than Texas. For good measure, Wyoming also has an official code (“Code of the West”). One of my favorites is “Ride for the brand.”
Still, even Wyoming has to have something besides cowboys. Wyoming is also nicknamed the Equality State, and it has an official coin depicting Sacajawea, perhaps the state’s most famous Native American. The state’s first residents are also recalled by the state flower, the Indian paintbrush.
Wyoming adopted the three most popular symbols in the Great Plains region—the plains cottonwood, western meadowlark, and bison. Let’s not forget the state grass and shrub, western wheatgrass and Wyoming big sagebrush.
The Rocky Mountains are represented by the state fish, the cutthroat trout. If you find yourself following a Sheridan’s green hairstreak (the state butterfly), you might stumble over one of the state’s two official fossils, the popular dinosaur Triceratops or the far more common prehistoric fish, Knightia.
All these symbols and more can be found somewhere between Yellowstone National Park and Devils Tower, which are popular Wyoming symbols themselves.
If you think state flags and flowers are nothing more than trivia, guess again. A thorough exploration of the more than 1,500 items adopted as state symbols embraces geography, history, and psychology.
You have found the best state symbols website, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg. The introduction above is adapted from Geobop’s State Symbols and My State Symbols Book, by far the biggest and most detailed state symbols references ever. You can learn still more about the symbols of the 50 states in the books Flag Quest and Grading the States. (Learn more about them here.)
After you spend some time exploring your favorite state’s symbols, you can come back here and tell us what you think about them.