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Great Seal of the United States, [Plaster]


Dublin Core


Great Seal of the United States, [Plaster]


Plaster mold rendition of the Great Seal of the United States. Plaster, galvanized pipe, sisal, and three plaster mold rims. The yellowish discoloring is from shellac used to seal the plaster.

Fredericks created a Rendition of the Great Seal of the United States for the American Embassy in London, England. This mold shows the intricate detail of the original clay model along with its three rims. The plaster model made from this mold is on display in the Main Exhibit Gallery on the east wall.

The use of shellac as a releasing agent discolors the surface. Note that the crack above the constellation of 13 stars and darker area in the olive branch foliage are filled in with darker clay. The reverse side shows plaster mixed with sisal, a stiff plant fiber that holds it to the piping. The piping acts as an armature or support structure.

Great Seal symbols include the eagle, official symbol of the US that means power and strength; 13 stars forming a constellation, denotes a new State taking place and rank among other sovereign powers; the shield of 13 stripes for the 13 original colonies; the olive branch which notes the power of peace; the 13 arrows denote the power of war; a cloud around the constellation, expressive of divine presence and command; 13 stripes, arrows, and stars represent the 13 original colonies. (Resource:


Fredericks, Marshall M., 1908-1998




Use of this image requires permission from the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum


Relief Sculpture


University Center (Mich.)

Mold Item Type Metadata

Physical Dimensions

65" dia



Catalog Number


Object Location

Storage Room B - F1


4/5/1994 Stall B

02/29/2000 gifted to MFSM

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