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What Is the State Motto of Florida?

Esther Ejim
Updated May 17, 2024
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The state motto of Florida is “In God We Trust.” An inscription of the motto can be found on the state seal, which is shaped like a circle with the “Great Seal of Florida” printed at the top and “In God We Trust” printed at the bottom. “In God We Trust” is a slight alteration of the previous state motto of Florida, which was “In God Is Our Trust.” Florida's motto, which was derived from the motto on the United States silver dollar, affirms a deep faith and trust of the people of Florida in God.

“In God We Trust” is also the official national motto of the United States. Even though the state motto of Florida has been widely recognized and accepted since the late 1800s, it did not receive any official recognition until 2006 when Governor Jeb Bush signed a house bill formally making “In God We Trust” the official state motto. The seal bearing the inscription of the state motto of Florida also features a depiction of an Indian woman spreading flowers on the ground with other images like a sabal palmetto palm tree and sun rays over a highland in the background. Florida's state seal is also incorporated into the state flag, where it is located at the center of the red cross of St. Andrew against a white background.

Florida is officially known as the “sunshine state" because of its usually sunny weather. This nickname was formally declared the official state nickname in 1970 by the legislature. Florida is also known as “the alligator state” due to the large numbers of alligators that can be found in the swamps and streams across the Florida landscape. The state of Florida has other official and unofficial mottoes and nicknames as well.

Another unofficial nickname for Florida is “the orange state,” as huge quantities of oranges are grown in the state for both local consumption and export. Major industries for the state of Florida include tourism and agriculture, with the largest city being Jacksonville. Florida was named by the Spanish explorer, Ponce de Leon, and the name literally means “feat of flowers.”

Florida has other official state adoptions including a state mammal, state bird, state marine mammal, state flower and state wild flower. The state mammal of Florida is the Florida panther, and the state marine mammal is the manatee. The state bird is the mockingbird, while the state flower and wild flower are the orange blossom and coreopsis, respectively.

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Esther Ejim
By Esther Ejim
Esther Ejim, a visionary leader and humanitarian, uses her writing to promote positive change. As the founder and executive director of a charitable organization, she actively encourages the well-being of vulnerable populations through her compelling storytelling. Esther's writing draws from her diverse leadership roles, business experiences, and educational background, helping her to create impactful content.
Discussion Comments
By cardsfan27 — On Jan 12, 2012

@jmc88 - Actually what should be known about the state motto for Florida as well as the state motto for the United States of America is that it was a common phrase that originally came along during the Civil War and was printed on the money of the United States.

It was a phrase that was picked by the Secretary of the Treasury during the Civil War and stuck for several decades until the Eisenhower administration which sought to put God back into United States government.

In 1956 it was officially adopted, eighty years after it was first put on a United States coin and thirty before the state of Florida adopted it as their unofficial motto.

By jmc88 — On Jan 12, 2012

@kentuckycat - To be totally honest Florida's state motto is not a take off of the motto of the United States, it actually came well before "In God We Trust" was officially adopted as the official motto of the United States of America.

The motto of the United States of America was originally adopted in 1956 well over fifty years after it became the unofficial state motto of the state of Florida.

I find this motto to be very common and I assume that ti was actually a very common phrase back then and it just took a very long time and the right type of political party in office to officially adopt it as the official motto of the state of Florida and the United States of America.

By kentuckycat — On Jan 11, 2012

@stl156 - I do agree with you. The Florida state bird and the Florida state flag reflect the culture of Florida and it does not seem that they were very creative in picking their motto.

Maybe they could not think of something original and they chose instead to simply adopt the United States motto showing that they agree with America and that is where their alliances lie.

I wonder if they maybe adopted this motto after the Civil War to show that they harbored no ill will against the United States and instead wanted to show that they were willing and able to become a state again. This would fit perfectly in line with it being unofficially adopted in the late 1800's during the era of Reconstruction.

By stl156 — On Jan 10, 2012

I find it a little bit of a cop out that the motto of the state of Florida is the exact same as the United States. Picking a state motto that is unoriginal and not unique makes it seem to me that it is a bit of a cop out and that the people who ended up picking it did not go through too much trouble trying to pick a state motto.

Things that are state sponsored like a state motto or state bird need to be unique and follow along the lines of reflecting their state's heritage in a way.

All that the state of Florida is saying with their motto is that they are in line with the motto of the United States of America and that they are not willing to come up with something original and unique to reflect the culture of their state.

Esther Ejim
Esther Ejim
Esther Ejim, a visionary leader and humanitarian, uses her writing to promote positive change. As the founder and...
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