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Answered 2009-06-10 15:49:39

The Oliver flag embraced national pride, and at the same time expressed characteristics of Missouri and Missourians. The three large stripes were symbolic of the people of the state-the blue stripe represented vigilance, permanency, and justice, the red represented valor, and the white stripe symbolized purity. The Missouri coat-of-arms appeared in the center of the flag, signifying both Missouri's independence as a state, and its place as a part of the whole United States. Having the coat-of-arms in the center of the national colors represents Missouri, as it is-the geographical center of the nation. By mingling the state coat-of-arms with the national colors of red, white, and blue, the flag signified the harmony existing between the two. Twenty-four stars surrounded the coat-of-arms, representative of Missouri's position as the 24th state admitted to the Union. The Great Seal of the State of Missouri, the basis of the coat-ofarms, has many special meanings of its own. Robert Wells, who was a lawyer, state legislator and a judge, designed it. The seal shows, by its helmet and buckled belt, that although Missouri is a strong state, it wants to be free to handle its own problems. The grizzly bears signify the size and strength of the state and the courage of Missourians. The new crescent moon was included to remind us that we can make our future better; it was also a special heraldic symbol pointing out that Missouri was the second state formed out of the Louisiana Purchase. The larger star, rising into a group of 23 stars, was to remind people that Missouri became the 24th state only after solving many difficult problems. The helmet was designed to show the power of the people of the state. Finally, there are two mottoes. "United We Stand, Divided We Fall" tells us how important it is to support the whole United States. "Salus populi suprema lex esto" is Latin which means, "Let the welfare of the people be the supreme law." That reminds us our state government functions to help better our lives. (Source: Missouri Secretary of State website)

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