The official state seal of Minnesota (which also appears on the state flag) contains the French motto "l’étoile du nord," meaning "the star of the North" (the basis for Minnesota's nickname as The North Star State). The seal displays many symbols of Minnesota.The sun on the western horizon signifies the flat plains covering much of Minnesota.
The Indian on horseback represents the Indian heritage of Minnesota. The tools the Indian’s horse and spear, the pioneer’s axe, rifle, and plow represent tools that were used for hunting and labor.
The stump is a symbol of the importance of the lumber industry in Minnesota. The Mississippi River and St. Anthony Falls are note the importance of these resources in transportation and industry.
The cultivated ground and the plow symbolize the importance of agriculture in Minnesota.
Trees beyond the falls, three pine trees represent the state tree and the three great pine regions of Minnesota–St. Croix, Mississippi, and Lake Superior.
The Minnesota State Flag is royal blue, with a gold fringe. In the center of the flag is the state seal. Around the state seal is a wreath of the state flower, the woman slipper.
Three dates are woven into the wreath 1858; the year Minnesota became a state 1819, the year Fort Snelling was established and 1893, the year the official flag was adopted.
Nineteen stars ring the wreath. The largest star represents Minnesota.