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New Hampshire state sealNew Hampshire
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Seal of the State of New Hampshire

Adopted: ADOPTIONDATE
New Hampshire's first seal
New Hampshire's first seal

New Hampshire's first seal, created by the First Provincial Congress in 1775, displayed a bundle of five arrows with an upright fish on one side and a pine tree on the other. The arrows represented the five counties at the time suggesing strength in unity. The fish and pine tree represented the state's major economic resources.

New Hampshire state seal
Seal of the State of New Hampshire
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In 1784, when the state's new constitution became effective, the legislature decided to change the seal to keep up with the times. The coastal town of Portsmouth had become a thriving ship building center and the legislature wanted to herald this important industry. So, with a rising sun in the background, the new design would feature a ship on stocks.

However, as time went on, this 1784 design became a victim of artists' whims and fancies. The scene continually changed. People appeared on docks, and barrels of rum materialized. In 1931, the legislature voted to regain control of the seal's design.

Today, the seal is unchanging. The frigate Raleigh, one of the first ships that the Constitutional Congress authorized for the nation's navy, graces the center of the seal. The date on the bottom of the seal now reads 1776, in celebration of the Declaration of Independence. The rum barrels are gone, the sun rises over the Atlantic Ocean, and a wreath of laurel frames the entire scene. Nine stars, throughout the laurel, signify New Hampshire's deciding vote ratifying the Constitution of the United States.

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Sources...

The 2008 New Hampshire Statutes. SOURCE:SUBNAMEIFAPP. 2009. 3 April 2009 <http://www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?Mode=View%20Statutes&Submenu=1&Tab=statutes>
Shearer, Benjamin F. and Barbara S. State Names, Seals, seals and Symbols: A Historical Guide Third Edition, Revised and Expanded. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 3 Sub edition, 2001.


New Hampshire state animal
"Pause," by wildlife artist Steve Babecki
Photographs, prints, and posters

Additional Information

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State seals: Complete list of official state seals from NETSTATE.COM.

More New Hampshire symbols & emblems: Complete list of official New Hampshire state symbols from NETSTATE.COM.

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The Nifty Fifty State seals
The Nifty Fifty
State seals

Paul Beatrice &
Paul Rodhe

The Nifty Fifty State seals, by Paul Beatrice & Paul Rodhe. 16 pages. Publisher: Applesauce Press (May 6, 2008) Reading level: Ages 9-12. Here comes another Nifty Fifty and all across America, children will cheer for their own home state and its seal, while discovering fun facts about all the other states. The engaging and entertaining gift set features a 16-page booklet, 50 cards, a map of the USA, and a pad with colored paper so kids can design their own seal. Each of the colorful cards displays a state seal, while the opposite side has detailed information on why it looks the way it does, what some of the seal’s symbols mean, and odd facts about that state. Kids will love finding out about towns with silly names (including Belchertown, Massachusetts and Bummerville, California), as well as unusual laws, cool sites to visit, and other great state stuff like its official song, dance, animal, and mineral. Many of the cards also feature entertaining family activities to try!

seals of the Fifty States and their Incredible Stories
seals
of the Fifty States

Randy Howe

seals of the Fifty States and their Incredible Stories, by Randy Howe. 208 pages. Publisher: Lyons Press; Second edition (November 10, 2009) seals of the Fifty States is an indispensable historical reference and a fascinating, beautiful pictorial guide to the rich diversity of America’s fifty states. It provides a colorful way to learn about how the United States grew and prospered and shaped itself and its banners over the years.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.

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NAME, AUTHOR. 99 pages. Publisher: PUBLISHERDATE Reading level: Grades 99. DESCRIPTION.