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State of OHIO

State Flag | State Seal | State Nickname | Other Symbols Links

State Flag: ( click here - for enlarged view)

Ohio's state flag was adopted in 1902. The Ohio burgee, as the swallowtail design is properly called, was designed by John Eisemann. The large blue triangle represents Ohio's hills and valleys, and the stripes represent roads and waterways. The 13 stars grouped about the circle represent the original states of the union; the 4 stars added to the peak of the triangle symbolize that Ohio was the 17th state admitted to the union. The white circle with its red center not only represents the "O" in Ohio, but also suggests Ohio's famous nickname, "The Buckeye State."

State Seal:

The Great Seal of the State of Ohio has undergone several design changes throughout its history. The rotunda of the Statehouse, for example, has a magnificent skylight with a handpainted version of a Seal that was designed in 1847. This version is similar to Ohio's present seal, but features a canal boat that is totally missing from today's seal. In an attempt to reign in the design of the seal, the Legislature officially adopted Ohio's modern version in 1967, modifying it in 1996. The Scioto River flows across the center of the seal, separating cultivated fields from Mount Logan. Thirteen rays of a rising sun radiate over the mountain, symbolizing the 13 original colonies. In the foreground stands a sheaf of wheat, representing agriculture and bounty. Mimicking the sheaf of wheat is a bundle of 17 arrows, symbolizing Ohio as the 17th state to join the Union.

State Nickname:

Ohio, the "Buckeye State", received its nickname because of the many buckeye trees that once covered its hills and plains. But that's only partly the reason. We have to go back to the feverish presidential campaign of 1840 for the rest of it.

William Henry Harrison, a Virginia-born Ohioan and military hero, was a candidate for the White House, but his opponents commented that he was better suited to sit in a log cabin and drink hard cider.

Some of Harrison's leading supporters, who were experts in promotional know-how, decided to turn into a positive reference what was supposed to be a negative one. They dubbed him "the log cabin candidate," and chose as his campaign emblem a log cabin made of buckeye timbers, with a long string of buckeyes decorating its walls. Furthermore, in parades, his backers walked with buckeye canes and rolled whisky barrels.

The campaign gimmicks were successful. "Old Tippecanoe," as Harrison was often called, beat President Martin Van Buren in the latter's bid for re-election, and thereafter the buckeye was closely associated with the state of Ohio. The name itself is of native origin. Because the markings on the nut resembled the eye of a buck, the Indians called it "hetuck" or "buckeye."

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