Utah Flag

by Sherri Smith

The current flag of Utah was adopted in 1913 and includes the Seal of Utah encircled in a golden circle on a background (ensign) of dark navy blue. The original Utah State Flag was adopted by the State Legislature in 1896 and revised in 1913. The beehive on the shield represents hard work and industry. The date 1847 is the year the Mormons made passage to Utah. A bald eagle, the United States national bird, settles atop the shield and symbolizes protection in peace and war. The sego lily is a symbol of peace and a U.S. flag appears on each side, symbolizing Utah’s unity to the nation.

Flag of UtahThe seal is the focus of the flag and is an integral part of the design of the flag. The great seal is described in Utah Code Annotated, 1953, Volume 7a, section 67-2-9 as follows:

“The Great Seal of the State of Utah shall be two and one-half inches in diameter, and of the following device; the center a shield and perched thereon an American Eagle with outstretching wings; the top of the shield pierced by six arrows crosswise; under the arrows the motto “INDUSTRY”; beneath the motto a beehive, on either side growing sego lilies; below the figures “1847”; on each side of the shield an American Flag.; encircling all, near the outer edge of the seal, beginning at the lower left-hand portion, the words, “THE GREAT SEAL OF THE STATE OF UTAH”, with the figures “1896” at the base.”

The design of the seal was adopted in 1850 by the Territory of Utah and modified by the artist Harry Edwards when Utah became a state in 1896.

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