What Changed in 1945 on the Presidential Seal?

This is a special post for Nikolina who does very well in school.

Question: What is the difference between the official Presidential Seal prior to October  1945:


and the one changed by President Harry S. Truman by Executive Order 9646 on October 25, 1945?


Answer: The position of the bald eagle’s head is different. At the end of the second World War, President Harry S. Truman officially changed the position of the bald eagle’s head from facing left in the direction of the 13 arrows to looking right toward the olive branch, thereby signifying a desire for peace over war.

The official Executive Order 9646 reads as follows:

By virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States, it is hereby ordered as follows:

The Coat of Arms of the President of the United States shall be of the following design:

SHIELD: Paleways of thirteen pieces Argent and Gules, a chief Azure; upon the breast of an American eagle displayed holding in his dexter talon an olive branch and in his sinister a bundle of thirteen arrows all Proper, and in his beak a white scroll inscribed “E PLURIBUS UNUM” Sable.
CREST: Behind and above the eagle a radiating glory Or, on which appears an arc of thirteen cloud puffs proper, and a constellation of thirteen mullets Argent.

The whole surrounded by white stars arranged in the form of an annulet with one point of each star outward on the imaginary radiating center lines, the number of stars conforming to the number of stars in the union of the Flag of the United States as established by the act of Congress approved April 4, 1818, 3 Stat. 415.

The Seal of the President of the United States shall consist of the Coat of Arms encircled by the words “Seal of the President of the United States.”

The Color and Flag of the President of the United States shall consist of a dark blue rectangular background of sizes and proportions to conform to military and naval custom, on which shall appear the Coat of Arms of the President in proper colors. The proportions of the elements of the Coat of Arms shall be in direct relation to the hoist, and the fly shall vary according to the customs of the military and naval services.

That portion of Executive Order No. 2390 of May 29, 1916, pertaining to the illustration and requirements for the President’s Flag is revoked.

The Coat of Arms, Seal, and Color and Flag shall be as described herein and as set forth in the illustrations and specifications which accompany this order and which are hereby made a part thereof.

These designs shall be used to represent the President of the United States exclusively.

This order shall be published in the FEDERAL REGISTER.

Signature of Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman

It would be changed twice by President Dwight D. Eisenhower with the addition of two more stars representing the states of Alaska and Hawaii.