Arizona Symbols

Arizona's state symbols represent the unique landscape and history of the state, illustrating the many things that make the state. Its desert landscapes are vividly represented through its flag and its seal, capturing the beauty that marks the state as truly unique.

The state flag is interesting as it was actually originally designed for the sake of a state rifle team. The team had been performing for years without a flag, and so in 1910 the head of the Arizona National Guard, Colonel Charles W. Harris, designed the current version. The state officially adopted it for use in 1917. It has since become one of the more popular state flags thanks to its stunning design.

The flag is topped by 13 bands in red and gold, the colors of the flag of Spain, with the 13 bands representing the original 13 counties of Arizona. The vivid colors and the converging nature of the bands make it also resemble one of the picturesque sunsets of Arizona. The convergence point is marked by a copper star, representing the copper mining industry that is core to Arizona's economy. The rest of the flag is blue, symbolizing liberty.

The state seal is representative of the foundations that Arizona is built upon, commonly known as the Five "C"s - cattle, cotton, copper, citrus, and climate. Cattle is represented by, of course, a cow, depicted grazing near the bottom right of the shield. Cotton is shown by an irrigated field, with citrus represented as an irrigated orchard just to the left of it. Copper is shown in the miner in the foreground. The climate is, of course, shown in the vivid setting sun and the clear sky around it. The top of the shield bears the state motto, "Ditat Deus", best translated as "God enriches". Around the seal are the words "Great Seal of the State of Arizona", along with the year Arizona became a full state, 1912.

Of course, the state has its own selection of official flora and fauna, the choices reflecting on the amount of life within the deserts of Arizona. The state bird is the cactus wren, a native to the region and an honestly adorable bird. The state amphibian, fish, mammal, and reptile were chosen by students in the area out of a wide pool of options, and are, respectively, the Arizona tree frog, Apache trout, ring-tailed cat, and Arizona ridged-nose rattlesnake. These animals accurately represent the diverse species present in Arizona.

Arizona's repertoire of symbols accurately represents the state, showcasing its beauty and history.