The sixth state to enter the union was Massachusetts. While Massachusetts has been a state since February 6, 1788, its state flag was not adopted until 1971. Before then, the flag had a design on it that was on both sides of the flag, which was later omitted. The current design features a Native American holding a long bow against a blue shield. The white star inside the shield represents the state of Massachusetts. The state motto is written on a blue ribbon in a yellow color that reads in Latin, Ense Petit Placidam Sub Libertate Quietem which means “By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty.” And on top of the blue shield and the Native American is an arm wielding a sword.
Several U.S. Presidents were born in this state. John Adams (2nd President, from 1797 to 1801) and John Quincy Adams (6th US President, from 1825 to 1829) were both born in what was then known as Braintree but has since been renamed Quincy. Following the Adams’ is John Fitzgerald Kennedy (aka JFK), born in Brookline in 1911. He served as the 35th President from 1961 to 1963. Lastly is George Herbert Walker Bush, the father of Former President George Walker Bush (2001 to 2009), the 41st U.S. President from 1989 to 1993.
This state is also home to Plymouth Rock, a significant place in American History. This was where the Mayflower pilgrims landed in 1620. Located in Plymouth, Massachusetts, this little rock is inside Pilgrim Memorial State Park where over a million people, tourists and locals alike, come to visit each year. Entry into this park is free to the public.
Folklore: Johnny Appleseed is the state folk hero and was recognized officially by the state in 1996. His real name was John Chapman, and he planted apple trees from New England all the way to the Ohio River.