Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Strange Maps.


I found this eye catching map of mottos most interesting. I chose this because I think that the state mottos are something worth researching.

The definition of a motto is “a short sentence or phrase chosen as encapsulating the beliefs or ideals of an individual, family, or institution.” I feel that the mottos for each state were chosen to reflect the state itself.

America has its own motto, “In God We Trust”. This was signed into law by Eisenhower in 1956. By some this is seen as controversial, due to the diverse amount of different cultures and religions within the states. However, having said that, the country itself is predominantly Christian. Only 6 of the states have their own mottos referring to God.

24 of the states have mottos written originally in English, while 24 have their mottos originally written in Latin. 2 states have mottos written in native languages, as well as one motto in French, Spanish, Italian, and Greek.

The earliest motto is Georgia’s, which dates back to 1798. The most recent motto is Alaska’s, which was introduced in 1967.

My favourite of the state mottos is Oregon’s. “She Flies With Her Own Wings.”
It was first written in English, and later translated into Latin. It represents its previous want for the state to be its own independent territory from the US and Britain in 1854, when it had not yet become a state. I find it interesting that the state still has this motto.

I also find it interesting that even though they are the United States of America, each state has its own identity.

1 comment:

  1. Oh yes - major point at the end there Siobhan. The federal system has been a major issue in US history. Obviously crucial in the Civil War, (the Southern states argued that the abolition of slavery was an assault on States' rights) but, less obviously, corporations have consistently thwarted welfare and safety legislation (eg in the 1880s, measures to ban child labor) on similar grounds.


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