List of U.S. state shells

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is a list of official state shells for those states of the United States that have chosen to select one as part of their state insignia.[1] In 1965, North Carolina was the first state to designate an official state shell, the Scotch bonnet. Since then, 14 other states have designated an official state shell.

These are seashells, the shells of various marine mollusks including both gastropod and bivalves. Each one was chosen to represent a maritime state, based on the fact that the species occurs in that state and was considered suitable to represent the state, either because of the species' commercial importance as a local seafood item, or because of its beauty, rarity, exceptional size, or other features.


State Shell Image Year designated
Johnstone's junonia

Scaphella junonia ssp. johnstoneae
Scaphella junonia.jpg 1990[2]
Eastern oyster

Crassostrea virginica

Crassostrea virginica 01.jpg 1989
Delaware Channeled whelk

Busycotypus canaliculatus
Thechanneledwhelkshell.png 2014[3]
Florida Horse conch

Triplofusus papillosus
Pleuroploca gigantea.jpg 1969[4]
Georgia Knobbed whelk

Busycon carica
Busycon carica.jpg 1987[5]
Massachusetts New England Neptune

Neptunea lyrata ssp. decemcostata
Neptunea lyrata shell.jpg 1987[6]
Eastern oyster

Crassostrea virginica
Crassostrea virginica 01.jpg 1974[7]
New Jersey Knobbed whelk

Busycon carica ssp. gmelin
Busycon carica.jpg 1995[8]
New York Bay scallop

Argopecten irradians
Argopecten irradians.jpg 1988[9]
North Carolina Scotch bonnet

Semicassis granulata
Semicassis Granulata Apertural.jpg 1965[10]
Oregon Oregon hairy triton

Fusitriton oregonensis
Fusitriton oregonensis 3.jpg 1989[11]
Rhode Island Quahaug

Mercenaria mercenaria
LittleNeck clams USDA96c1862.jpg 1987[12]
South Carolina Lettered olive

Oliva sayana
Lettered olive 0015.jpg 1984[13]
Lightning whelk

Sinistrofulgur perversum ssp. pulleyi
Sinistrofulgur perversum 01.jpg 1987[14]
Eastern oyster

Crassostrea virginica
Crassostrea virginica 01.jpg 1974[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ List of all state shells
  2. ^ "Alabama Shell". Alabama Emblems, Symbols and Honors. Alabama Department of Archives & History. 2001-07-12. Retrieved 2007-03-20.
  3. ^ "Chapter - Delaware General Assembly".
  4. ^ "State Shell - Florida Department of State".
  5. ^ "Government & Politics".
  6. ^
  7. ^ "State Symbols". Archived from the original on 13 May 2017. Retrieved 12 January 2022.
  8. ^ "Session Laws of New Jersey". 1995. hdl:10929/50436.
  9. ^ "NYS Kids Room - State Symbols". Archived from the original on 2012-02-07.
  10. ^ "Official State Symbols of North Carolina". North Carolina State Library. State of North Carolina. Archived from the original on 2008-02-06. Retrieved 2008-01-26.
  11. ^ "Chapter 186".
  12. ^ "RIGOV".
  13. ^ "South Carolina State House | South Carolina State Symbols".
  14. ^ "Texas State Symbols - Texas State Library and Archives Commission | TSLAC".
  15. ^ "§ 1-510. Official emblems and designations".

External links[edit]