The seal’s outer ring features the County’s year of incorporation, while the 21 stars represent the 21 municipalities that make up Union County.
The top left quadrant represents the many transportation options within the County, specifically referencing Newark Liberty International Airport and the Port Newark-Elizabeth Marine Terminal, which conveys a sense of progress.
The top right quadrant shows the iconic Union County Courthouse. Completed in 1931 and on both the State and National Registers of Historic Places, the 17-story, 238 foot building is the tallest in Elizabeth, which holds the County seat.
In a nod to the County’s history and the legacy of the previous seal, the bottom left quadrant features an image of Hannah Caldwell, who became a symbol for the fight for independence after her death. Keeping Hannah as part of the seal to pay tribute to her memory and the many, brave residents of Union County, whose sacrifices have contributed to the birth and growth of the United States over the past 250 years.
The bottom right quadrant depicts a park, representing Union County’s strong commitment to preserving open space. The three dozen parks managed by the County encompass over 6,200 acres, or nearly 10% of its total area.
The compass in the middle represents the County’s diverse, yet united population. The word “compass” is derived from the Latin roots com- meaning “together,” and passus- meaning “pace or step”. Taken as a whole, the word can be understood as “to step together,” which Union County and its people will continue to do.
This seal option for the County of Union incorporates one of its most recognizable landmarks, the Union County Courthouse in Elizabeth, which holds the County seat.
This seventeen-story tower is an architectural icon that dominates the Elizabeth city skyline. Not merely just a symbol of justice for the residents of the county, the courthouse also serves as an important symbol of unity and history- as it is adjacent to the First Presbyterian Churchyard, where Reverend James Caldwell and his wife Hannah are buried.
Prior to Elizabeth’s official incorporation in the mid-19th century, all residents of the city were required to cast their ballots on the front steps of the courthouse building. Union County itself was named in honor of the Union of the United States, the status of which was under threat in the years leading up to the Civil War when the county was founded in 1857.
The seal is encircled by a band of twenty-one stars, one for each of the municipalities located in Union County. The number twenty-one is also significant to the state of New Jersey, which has twenty-one county governments.
The sunburst in the center of the design represents the hope of the people of Union County – that together, we will ensure a brighter future for our all.
Please note, while the design concepts will remain the same, the quadrant positioning is subject to change.