Mottoes

They aren’t as familiar as flag, but nearly every country has one. Every U.S. state has one, and some have two. For good measure, they are often depicted on coats of arms, state seals, or even flags.

I’m talking about mottoes. Below is a list of state mottoes. As time allows, I’ll add a list of national mottoes.

Speaking of which, did you know the United States has two national mottoes, E Pluribus Unum and “In God We Trust”? Have you ever wondered why? Do you think it could be a conspiracy?

I’ll explore that mystery in my book U.S. Symbols.

List of State Mottoes
State Motto Translation
Alabama Audemus jura nostra defendere 1939
Alaska North to the Future 1967
Arizona Ditat Deus “God Enriches” 1864
Arkansas Regnat Populus “The People Rule” 1907
California Eureka “I Have Found It” 1963
Colorado Nil Sine Numine “Nothing without Providence” 1861
Connecticut Qui Transtulit Sustinet “He Who Transplanted Still Sustains”
Delaware Liberty and Independence
District of Columbia Justia Omnibus
Florida In God We Trust 1868
Georgia Wisdom, Justice, Moderation
Hawaii Ua Mau ke Ea o ka Aina i ka Pono “The Life of the Land is Perpetuated in Righteousness” 1843
Idaho Esto Perpetua “It Is Forever” 1891
Illinois State Sovereignty National Union
Indiana The Crossroads of America 1937
Iowa Our liberties we prize, and our rights we will maintain 1847
Kansas Ad Astra per Aspera “To the Stars Through Difficulties”
Kentucky United we stand, divided we fall 1942
(Latin) Deo gratiam habeamus 2002
Louisiana Union, Justice and Confidence
Maine Dirigo “I Direct” or “I Guide”
Maryland Scuto Bonae Voluntatis Tuae Coronasti Nos “With favor Wilt Thou Compass Us as with a Shield”
Maryland Fatti maschii parole femine “Strong Deeds, Gentle Words”
Massachusetts Ense Petit Placidam Sub Libertate Quietem “By the Sword We Seek Peace, but Peace Only under Liberty”
Michigan Quaeris Peninsulam Amoenam Circumspice “If You Seek a Pleasant Peninsula, Look About You”
Minnesota ’Etoile du Nord “Star of the North”
Mississippi Virtute et Armis “By Valor and Arms” 1894
Missouri Salus Populi Suprema Lex Esto “The Welfare of the People Shall Be the Supreme Law”
Montana Oro y Plata “Gold and Silver”
Nebraska Equality Before the Law 1867
Nevada All for Our Country 1866
New Hampshire Live Free or Die 1945
New Jersey Liberty and Prosperity 1928
New Mexico Crescit Eundo “It Grows as It Goes”
New York Excelsior “Higher” 1778
North Carolina Esse Quam Videri “To Be Rather than to Seem” 1893
North Dakota Liberty and Union Now and Forever, One and Inseparable
Ohio With God, All Things Are Possible 1959
Oklahoma Labor Omnia Vincit “Labor Conquers All Things” 1906
Oregon Alis Volat Propriis “She Flies with Her Own Wings”
Pennsylvania Virtue, Liberty, and Independence 1875
Rhode Island Hope
South Carolina Animis Opibusque Parati “Prepared in Mind and Resources” 1776
  Dum Spiro Spero “While I Breathe I Hope” 1776
South Dakota Under God the People Rule 1885
Tennessee Agriculture and Commerce 1987
Texas Friendship 1930
Utah Industry 1959
Vermont Freedom and Unity
(Latin) Stella quarta decima fulgeat 2015
Virginia Sic Semper Tyrannis “Thus Ever to Tyrants”
Washington Alki “Bye and Bye”
West Virginia Montani Semper Liberi “Mountaineers Are Always Free” 1863
Wisconsin Forward 1851
Wyoming Equal Rights 1955
Symbols of State Home Symbols of State Home