Welcome to . . . one of the few states that don’t have any really cool nicknames. As compensation, Maryland has a remarkable roster of state symbols, however. For starters, many are unique, not shared by any other state. (Continued below)
|Nicknames & Slogans|
|Nicknames||Free State, Old Line State|
|Symbols of State|
|Motto||Scuto Bonae Voluntatis Tuae Coronasti Nos||>|
|Motto||Fatti maschii parole femine||>|
|Song (former)||Maryland, My Maryland||1939||>|
|Flower||black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)||1918||>|
|Tree||white oak (Quercus alba)||1941||>|
|Bird||Baltimore oriole (Icterus galbula)||1947||>|
|Horse||Thoroughbred (Equus caballus)||2003||>|
|Dog||Chesapeake Bay Retriever (Canis lupus familiaris)||1964||>|
|Cat||calico cat (Felis catus)||2001||>|
|Reptile||diamondback terrapin (Malaclemys terrapin)||1994||>|
|Fish||rockfish or striped bass (Morone saxatilis)||1965||>|
|Insect||Baltimore checkerspot (Euphydryas phaeton)||1973||>|
|Crustacean||blue crab (Callinectes-sapidus)||1989||>|
|Gem||Patuxent River stone||2004||>|
|Fossil Shell †||Ecphora gardnerae||1984||>|
|Dinosaur †||Astrodon johnstoni||1998||>|
|Dessert||Smith Island Cake||2008||>|
|Recreational and Team Sport||volleyball||2014||>|
|Folk Dance||square dance||1994||>|
|Theater||Center Stage, Baltimore||1978||>|
|Summer Theater of Maryland||Olney Theatre, Montgomery County||1978||>|
Then there’s that amazing flag. Some consider it the most beautiful of state flags, while others think it’s the worst. However, the colors on Maryland’s flag are complemented by the state flower (black-eyed Susan), state bird (Baltimore oriole), state insect (Baltimore checkerspot butterfly), and maybe even the reptile (diamondback terrapin).
Other symbols that have their own fan clubs include the Thoroughbred, jousting, striped bass, blue crab, and skipjack. In summary, sports, seafood, and bright colors appear to be the main themes among Maryland’s exciting symbols. But what happened to Maryland’s state song, and why do so many people hate Maryland’s flag?
Although it isn’t one of my favorites, I think Maryland’s flag is cool. I’m also a big fan of its former state song, which was painfully honest. But who can handle the truth these days?
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.