Texas Day by Day
On this day in Texas history…
General Land Office gets new seal
March 25th, 1986
On this day in 1986, the General Land Office received a new seal in commemoration of the Texas Sesquicentennial. Texas governmental seals usually feature a slightly modified version of the state seal or a single star. The most notable exception is that of the GLO, which has had three designs. The first, used from 1838 to 1842, depicted a bison standing before a live oak tree, a small star, and the words "GENERAL LAND OFFICE-TEXAS." This first seal was apparently broken or lost during the Archive War of December 1842, and the Land Office ordered a replacement that had the Lone Star emblem of the republic and "TEXAS" between the points of the star and "GENERAL LAND OFFICE" in the outer margin. This replacement proved unsatisfactory and was never used. Another seal was used from mid-1844 to 1986, with a device consisting of a cotton plant, plow, scythe, shovel, sheaf of wheat, fence, meridian sun, and the words "GENERAL LAND OFFICE-REPUBLIC OF TEXAS." (Soon after annexation a new die was cast that changed the words to "GENERAL LAND OFFICE-THE STATE OF TEXAS.") The 1986 seal featured a design representing the agency's land and resource management responsibilities. The seal consists of a bison in front of a fish-eye view of mountains, plateaus, prairies, bays, barrier islands, and the Gulf of Mexico, all surmounted by a Lone Star, and "1836-GENERAL LAND OFFICE-1836-THE STATE OF TEXAS."