Maine State Seal

maine state seal

The seal of the State shall be a shield in silver, on it is a pine tree with a moose lying at the foot of it; on the left side of the shield is a farmer resting on a scythe; on the right side, a seaman, resting on an anchor.

In the foreground, representing sea and land, and under the shield, shall be the name of the State in large Roman capitals: MAINE

The whole shall be surrounded by a crest, the North Star. The motto, in small Roman capitals, shall be in a label resting between the shield and the crest reading: DIRIGO (I lead).

Maine became a state on March 15, 1820 and the Legislature adopted the language governing its design on June 9. The description had been drafted by a short-lived Committee under the direction of first Senate President William Moody; Colonel Isaac G. Reed of Waldoboro is credited with the Seal's description and explanation.

The actual appearance of the Seal has varied over the years, all the variations based on the language above. The first sketch of the Seal was markedly different from the above; the "moose" looked like a deer, the shield was more conventional, the scythe was held with the blade on the ground. Later variations included the scythe being held behind the husbandman's head, and in one case, the inexplicable substitution of a sextant for the mariner's anchor. There is little statutory guidance for coloring the Seal other than the description of the blue-background State Flag in Title 1 sec. 206. The present design was fixed by the Legislature in 1919.