The state seal of Maine contains images that are important to the state, including the state tree, animal, and motto. The first seal was created when Maine became a state, and the basic images have remained generally the same. Legislation was put into place to provide detailed information on the images found on the seal. It is only used by the Secretary of the State of Maine and is found on the state flag.
The state seal of Maine includes a shield containing the image of a moose at the foot of a pine tree. On the right side of the pine is a farmer with a scythe, and on the left side, a seamen leaning on an anchor. The foreground of the seal depicts a representation of land and sea. Underneath the shield is the name "Maine" in capital letters. Above the shield is the North Star and the word dirigio, Latin for "I lead", the Maine state motto.
The first state seal of Maine became official in 1820, three months after Maine became a state. The original design was thought to have been created by Colonel Isaac G. Reed. All subsequent seals are based on the description from the 1820 statute, but some variations include a deer instead of a moose and the farmer holding the scythe with the blade toward the ground rather than in a resting position. The statute does not include any color information for the seal except for a description of the blue background used on the flag.
Since 1919, there have been no variations on the state seal. Legislation was passed that provided a strict description of the images on the seal, which is still followed today. The moose and pine tree are also the state tree and the state animal.
The official state seal of Maine is made of cast iron and is an embosser, a tool that creates a three dimensional design on paper. The seal embosser and several smaller versions are used to imprint the state seal of Maine on official documents. While this official seal belongs to the secretary of state, the seal is also an image that can be found on many objects.
The seal is also found on other state symbols, as it is featured on the Maine state flag. A modified state seal is used on the marine flag, but this version does not contain the farmer, only the seaman.