Massachusetts was the 6th state in the USA; it became a state on February 6, 1788. - State Capital is Boston. - Nickname is Bay State. - Massachusetts' official flag was adopted in 1971 (before 1971, the Massachusetts flag had a design on both sides of the flag; the design on the back was omitted). Massachusetts' flag depicts a Native American carrying a bow and arrow on a blue shield (all on a white background). A white star on the shield represents Massachusetts, one of the original 13 states. The state motto (in Latin and written in yellow on a blue ribbon) reads "ENSE PETIT PLACIDAM SUB LIBERTATE QUIETEM," meaning "By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty." Above the shield is a arm wielding a sword (demonstrating the state motto).