The device of arms of the State flag was adopted in 1778 and the present flag is a modern version of a Revolutionary War Flag. The original is at the Albany Institute of History and Art.The State Flag depicts the Great Seal of the State of New York on a blue background. In the center of the Great Seal is a shield, which shows two ships on a river; in the background are three mountains and centered above is a golden sun in a blue sky. Above the shield is an American eagle, wings spread, atop a globe. The figures on either side of the shield represent Liberty and Justice. On a banner below is the State motto, Excelsior, which means "Ever Upward."