State Post – Florida

sfl35i_3x5_floridaIn the very corner of the US is the 27th state to enter the Union, Florida, on March 3, 1845. Florida was founded in 1565 by Spanish settlers and the Spanish held this territory until it became a permanent US settlement in 1821. Northern state residents began to visit Florida and found Florida to be a lovely place for tourism as the weather was very favorable with its mild climate, earning its nickname The Sunshine State.

Their state flag was adopted in 1900 when Florida voters ratified a constitutional amendment based on an 1899 joint resolution of the state legislature. It was held to add diagonal red bars to their state flag in the style of the St. Andrew’s Cross (This flag is similar to Alabama’s state flag). Before then, it was only the state seal on a white backdrop. The state seal has a Native American Seminole Woman scattering flowers on a beach along with a steamboat, a sabal tree, and the sun. Surrounding the seal in a gold circle are the words, “State of Florida”, and “In God We Trust”, which is the state’s motto. The seal was revised in 1985 which originally depicted a Western Plains Indian woman, the steamboat was touched up a little bit, and the sabal palm tree was originally a cocoa palm tree.

Florida is home to many  agencies like the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, also known as NASA. They are known for doing research on space and aeronautics and hold space missions. Although they are based out of Washington DC, the space shuttles for specific missions are launched out of Cape Canaveral, Florida, and the Kennedy Space Center.

As Florida is a popular tourist spot, it houses popular attractions and resorts like Walt Disney World, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the Epcot Center and Universal Studios, all located in Orlando (there are similar theme parks in California, but they are called Disneyland and the Universal Studios in California is located in Universal City, CA). The city of Orlando attracts more tourists than any other theme park city in the US.

Food Fact: Florida is the largest Citrus producer in the US!

 

Flag of Florida

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The flag of the state of Florida was adopted by popular referendum on September 24, 1900. The flag is rectangular with a white background and a red diagonal cross. The seal of the state of Florida appears in the center of the flag, at the intersection of the red stripes.

The red diagonal cross is reminiscent of the Cross of Burgundy flag that the Spanish navy used in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, during which the empire colonized Florida. The seal of the state of Florida depicts a Native American Seminole woman spreading hibiscus flowers in the foreground. Florida’s state tree, the Sabal palm, appears behind the woman. A steamboat appears in the background as the suns rays break into the sky. A gold border encloses the seal. The text, “Great Seal of the State of Florida,” and “In God We Trust,” appear in red capital letters insider the border.

During the Civil War, when Florida seceded from the Union, the Florida Legislature passed a law authorizing Florida’s governor to design Florida’s first official state flag. Florida’s first flag was included a blue vertical field on the left side with Florida’s state seal (different from the current state seal) inside the blue field. The other region of the flag included two red horizontal stripes, one on the top of the flag and one on the bottom, with a white stripe in the center.

Between 1868 and 1900, Florida used a flag that featured the state’s seal on a white background. Just before the turn of the century, however, Florida’s Governor Francis P. Fleming suggested adding the red diagonal cross to Florida’s state flag. By adding color to the flag, the banner could not be mistaken as a flag of retreat, and the red stripes added significance as well. This decision was approved by popular referendum in 1900. In 1985, the graphics of the Florida state seal were improved slightly, and the flag changed subsequently as well.