Jeffery Matthews: Manitoba Canada Coat of Arms
Manitoba was named after an Algonquian Indian word meaning great spirit, and one could easily believe that a great spirit indeed is responsible for the vast fields of wheat and other grains, swaying in the breeze under the clear blue heavens. Here on the fields of the southwestern part of the province, great numbers of beef cattle graze, and from the farms of this region come other products like pork, milk and poultry which are important to the people of Manitoba. Lying in this fertile area is the capital and largest city, Winnipeg. More than half of the population of Manitoba lives here, and a majority of the province's industry is centered in the city. Down the center of Manitoba is the fertile Red River Valley. Interspersed among the wheat fields are thousands of lakes and rivers -- so many, in fact, that almost one fifth of the entire surface of the province is covered with water. To the northeast is a rugged, rocky area which covers almost two thirds of Manitoba and has great deposits of copper, gold, nickel and zinc. In 1905 King Edward VII of England honored the province of Manitoba by warranting the creation of a provincial Coat of Arms. Prominent on the Arms is a buffalo, which symbolizes the importance of the Red River buffalo to the history of Manitoba, and the position of Manitoba as a Prairie Province. At the top of the Coat of Arms is the red and white Cross of St. George which denotes the province's longstanding association with Great Britain.
This painting was originally published on the Fleetwood® First Day Cover for the Canada 32¢ Manitoba stamp issued June 29, 1984.
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