Shortly after America’s independence in 1776, states like West Virginia began to adopt their own official state seal, motto, nickname, and more, which have all been used to symbolize and represent the uniqueness of each state and what they stand for.

The West Virginia state seal was originally adopted in 1863, and features a large boulder, with the inscription “June 20, 1863”, which is the date that West Virginia gained independence and became an official state!

This famous state seal of West Virginia displays two crossed rifles and a Liberty cap in front of the boulder. This represents the importance of fighting for liberty, despite what state you are from. The farmer on the left with an axe, plow, and cornstalk symbolizes industry. In the center of the seal you can see the arms of the state, which are also on the state’s flag too.

West Virginia state seal

Seal of the State of West Virginia

In the outer ring of the seal you can see the text “State of West Virginia”, which sits just above the state motto “Montani Semper Liberi”. This latin phrase stands for “Mountaineers are Always Free”, which pays homage to the official state nickname of “The Mountain State”.

Most states will have their seals showcase a relevant story, that is indicative of the state and its history, and this fact about the Mountain State puts its history and what it stands for across very well in its state seal. The Great Seal of the State of West Virginia is a vivid symbol of all that embodies the state!