Indiana flag

Indiana State Motto

"The Crossroads of America" (Official)

The Indiana state motto was adopted in 1937. The Indiana Department of Administration explains the meaning behind the Indiana motto as such:

"'The Crossroads of America' signifies the importance of waterways, railroads, highways and other transportation facilities in the state, viewed by many as some of the finest in the nation."

The importance Indiana puts on paths of transportation has roots all the way back to the early 1800s when the major cross state Cumberland Road (today US Route 40) was built.

Indiana state motto: The Crossroads of America - picture of highway

Indiana State Nicknames

Whereas there is only one Indiana motto, there exist a number of state nicknames for Indiana:

"The Hoosier State"
Since the 1830's Indiana has gone under this nickname. The reason behind this nickname has been speculated much upon and therefore many interesting and humorous theories on the subject exist.

A few of them are listed below:

  1. "The Who's Here Story":
    The Indianans were noisy people and when they passed a house they supposedly shouted "Who's here?" Another variation goes to the people in the houses asking when hearing a knocking on the door: "Who's yere?". These exclamations in time became "Hoosier".

  2. "The Who's Ear Story":
    James Whitcomb Riley in "The Hoosier Poet" makes the suggestion that the term "Hoosier" reflects the violent and rough nature of the Indianans.

    During fights in taverns, it would not be uncommon for someone to bite an ear off another person in pure rage.The next morning an early rising settler would spot an ear on the floor and say: "Who's ear?"

  3. "Mr. Hoosier":
    A contractor named Hoosier hired Indianan men and they were subsequently called "Hoosier's men" or just "Hoosiers".

  4. "The Indiana Historian":
    Jacob Piatt Dunn, an Indiana historian traced the word all the way back to England to the word "hoozer", which means "anything large" in Cumberland dialect.

    The Anglo-Saxon root "Hoo" means high or hill. "Hoosier" referred in Indiana to hill people or woodsmen.

Indiana State Slogans

Whereas the Indiana motto intends to describe the national pride in transportation facilities, Indiana state slogans are more directly orientated towards attracting tourists - some Indiana state slogans are more 'serious' in nature, and as you will see, some are, well, less serious:

"Indiana: Restart Your Engines"
This Indiana state slogan is a reference to the "Indianapolis 500-Mile Race". It is also the slogan of Indiana's Official Travel Planning Source:

"Enjoy Indiana"
This is the Slogan from the "Indiana Find: Your Indiana Search Engine":

"Indiana: 50 Million Years Tidal Wave Free"

"Indiana: We So Corny!"

Some of these Indiana funny state slogans can be bought as souvenir items on t-shirts and stickers.

USA map with Indiana highlighted