The following are lists of U.S. state, district, and territorial symbols as recognized by the state legislatures, territorial legislatures, or tradition. Some, such as flags, seals, and birds have been created or chosen by all U.S. polities, while others, such as state crustaceans, state mushrooms, and state toys have been chosen by only a few.
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The flags of the U.S. states, territories, and the District of Columbia exhibit a variety of regional influences and local histories, as well as different styles and design principles. Nonetheless, the majority of the states' flags share the same design pattern consisting of the state seal superimposed on a monochrome background, commonly a shade of blue.
The flag of the state of South Dakota the sun represents the common weather in South Dakota. Represents the U.S. state of South Dakota with a field of sky blue charged with a version of the state seal in the center, surrounded by gold triangles representing the sun's rays, surrounded in turn by inscriptions in gold sans-serif capitals of "south dakota" on top and "the mount rushmore state" on the bottom. The inscription on the bottom was "the sunshine state" before it was changed in 1992.
The flag of West Virginia is the official flag of the U.S. state of West Virginia and was officially adopted by the West Virginia Legislature on March 7, 1962. The present flag consists of a pure white field bordered by a blue stripe with the coat of arms of West Virginia in the center, wreathed by Rhododendron maximum and topped by an unfurled red ribbon reading, "State of West Virginia." It is the only state flag to bear crossing rifles, meant to illustrate the importance of the state's fight for liberty during the Civil War.
This article describes the evolution of the flag of the United States, as well as other flags used within the U.S., such as the flags of governmental agencies. There are also separate flags for embassies and boats.
In the United States, a governor serves as the chief executive officer and commander-in-chief in each of the fifty states and in the five permanently inhabited territories, functioning as both head of state and head of government therein. As such, governors are responsible for implementing state laws and overseeing the operation of the state executive branch. As state leaders, governors advance and pursue new and revised policies and programs using a variety of tools, among them executive orders, executive budgets, and legislative proposals and vetoes. Governors carry out their management and leadership responsibilities and objectives with the support and assistance of department and agency heads, many of whom they are empowered to appoint. A majority of governors have the authority to appoint state court judges as well, in most cases from a list of names submitted by a nominations committee.
The coats of arms of the U.S. states are coats of arms, adopted by those states that have chosen, that are an official symbol of the state, alongside their seal. Eighteen states have officially adopted coats of arms. The former independent Republic of Texas and Kingdom of Hawaii each had a separate national coat of arms, which are no longer used.
Seals of governors of the U.S. states are the primary symbols of the executive office of the governor in several states of the United States, similar in concept to the Seal of the President of the United States and Seal of the Vice President of the United States. Governors of some states, such as Washington and Oregon, simply use the state seal in their role as chief executive.
Historical coats of arms of the U.S. states date back to the admission of the first states to the Union. Despite the widely accepted practice of determining early statehood from the date of ratification of the United States Constitution, many of the original colonies referred to themselves as states shortly after the Declaration of Independence was signed on 4 July 1776. Committees of political leaders and intellectuals were established by state legislatures to research and propose a seal and coat of arms. Many of these members were signers of the Articles of Confederation, Declaration of Independence, and United States Constitution. Several of the earliest adopted state coats of arms and seals were similar or identical to their colonial counterparts.