West Virginia University’s seal was designed by its first president, Reverend Alexander Martin, and adopted by the WVU Board of Regents on June 16, 1869. The center of the seal includes an outline of the campus (then only Woodburn Circle), hills behind the buildings to reflect the institution’s “stability,” and a rising sun to indicate its “prosperity.”
The motto in the inner circle Greek translates to: “Add to your faith virtue and to virtue knowledge” (from 2 Peter 1:5 in the King James Bible). The outer circle in Latin translates to: “Seal of the West Virginia University Established 7 February 1867.”
The Regent’s original, handwritten resolution adopting the seal is located in the University Archives in the WVU Wise Library.
Research by Anne Effland