What are some state mottos?


Quick Answer

The state motto of Illinois is "State sovereignty, national union," and the state motto of Nebraska is "Equality before the law." Some state mottoes are not in English, such as New Mexico, whose state motto is "Crescit eundo" which translates to "It grows as it goes."

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Full Answer

Many state mottoes are not written in English and appear in Latin, Italian, French, Hawaiian or Native American languages. South Carolina, Kentucky, North Dakota and Vermont each have two mottoes. Guam and the Northern Marina Islands are the only territories without a motto at all. Eight states use their motto on their state quarter, and 38 states use their motto on their state seal. Puerto Rico adopted the earliest motto in 1511 as "Joannes Est Nomen Eius," translating to "John is his name." This motto was granted to Puerto Rico by the Spanish at that time. The next official motto was not adopted until 1662 by Connecticut. Their motto is "Qui transtulit sustinet" which translates to "He who transplanted sustains."

The official motto of the United States, "In God we trust," was made official in 1956. Although the motto "E pluribus unum" has appeared on the Great Seal of the United States since 1782, it has never been an official national motto.

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