The History of the Seal of the United States

By United States. Dept. Of State | Go to book overview

VII
THE THIRD SEAL

January 10, 1883, the Secretary of State, Theodore F. Frelinghuysen, addressed the Chairman of the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives, Samuel J. Randall, asking for an appropriation of $1,000 to pay for having a new seal of the United States made. "Since the year 1782," his letter said, "when the device was adopted, there have been, it is believed, but two dies of the obverse of the seal, the only side which has been employed up to this time for sealing documents. The reverse of the seal has never been engraved by the Government. The original die of the obverse, after being in use for about sixty years, was replaced by the present die, which has become very much worn and no longer gives clear impressions. It is also to be observed with respect to the latter that it does not strictly conform to the device established by law. It seems to me, therefore, to be eminently important that a new and correct die be made without delay." He also advised that the reverse be cut as a compliance with the law and "a proper respect to pay to the founders of this Government, at this time, to carry out the

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The History of the Seal of the United States
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 1
  • Contents 3
  • I - The First Device 7
  • II - The Lovell Committee 18
  • III - William Barton's Designs 23
  • IV - The Secretarys Device 33
  • V - The Arms Adopted 41
  • VI - The Illegal Seal 48
  • VII - The Third Seal 53
  • VIII - The Fourth Seal 63
  • IX - Uses of the Seal 65
  • Glossary of Heraldic Terms. 69
  • Index 71
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