The state motto of New York is "Excelsior," meaning "Ever Upward." The motto is inscribed on the Great Seal, state flag and Device of Arms, otherwise known as the coat of arms, of New York.
New York officially became part of the United States on July 26, 1788. It established its capital in Albany and adopted the nickname "Empire State." New York's motto, which is written on a white banner on the state flag, symbolizes the people's aspiration of attaining loftier goals. Other popular state mottoes include "Eureka...I have found it!" for California, "We Dare Defend Our Rights" for Alabama and "United We Stand, Divided We Fall" for Kentucky.