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Wisconsin State Motto

"Forward"

Wisconsin State Seal, symbol used by the state to authenticate certain documents.

Adopted in 1851.

Language: English


See Wisconsin State Seal

See Wisconsin Caot of Arms

Reflecting Wisconsin's continuous drive to be a national leader, the state adopted "Forward" as the official state motto in 1851. Wisconsin's state motto was adopted as an element of its official coat of arms and seal.

In 1851, Governor Dewey had asked UW Chancellor John Lathrop to design a new state seal. It is alleged that the motto was selected during a chance meeting between Governor Dewey and Edward Ryan when the governor went to New York City to have the new seal engraved. Ryan objected to the Latin motto "Excelsior", which Lathrop proposed. According to tradition, Dewey and Ryan sat on the steps of a Wall Street bank and designed a new seal, choosing "Forward" as the motto.

Wisconsin State Motto
"Forward"

Wisconsin State coat of arms.

Wisconsin Coat of ArmsMotto: "Forward". The motto, "Forward", was introduced in the 1851 revision of the state seal and coat of arms. Governor Dewey had asked University of Wisconsin Chancellor John H. Lathrop to design a new seal. It is alleged the motto was selected during a chance meeting between Governor Dewey and Edward Ryan (later chief justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court) when the governor went to New York City, carrying the Lathrop design to the engraver. Ryan objected to the Latin motto, "Excelsior", which Lathrop proposed. According to tradition Dewey and Ryan sat down on the steps of a Wall Street bank, designed a new seal and chose "Forward"on the spot.

Wisconsin Law

The law designating the official Wisconsin state motto is found in the Wisconsin Statutes, Chapter 1, Section 1-07.

This statute describes the Wisconsin coat of arms The motto is specified within this description.

CHAPTER 1. SOVEREIGNTY AND JURISDICTION OF THE STATE.
SECTION 1.07.

1.07 State coat of arms. The coat of arms of the state of Wisconsin is declared to be as follows:
ARMS. - Or, quartered, the quarters bearing respectively a plow, a crossed shovel and pick, an arm and held hammer, and an anchor, all proper; the base of shield resting upon a horn of plenty and pyramid of pig lead, all proper; over all, on fesse point, the arms and motto of the United States, namely: Arms, palewise of 13 pieces argent and gules; a chief azure; motto (on garter surrounding inescutcheon), "E pluribus unum".
CREST. - A badger, passant, proper.
MOTTO. - Over crest, "Forward".
History: 1975 c. 41.

Mottos of the States
Motto: "United we stand, divided we fall" is a phrase that has been used in mottos, from nations and states to songs. The basic concept is that unless the people are united, they will be defeated. It is often used in the abbreviated form United we stand
State motto is a word, phrase, or sentence inscribed on or attached to a coin, building, or other object. The motto states an important idea for a group of people within the state.
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