The official seal for the City of Los Angeles was designed by Herbert L. Goudge, a deputy city attorney, and officially adopted on March 27, 1905 via Ordinance 10,834.
The coat of arms in the center of the seal displays 4 different images representing 4 different stages of Los Angeles' history;
- The 1st quarter displays the stars and stripes of the American flag signifying its status as a city in the United States of America since 1848.
- The 2nd quarter displays the grizzly bear flag of California signifying its history as part of the California Republic from 1846 to 1848.
- The 3rd quarter displays the eagle holding a serpent from Mexico's coat of arms signifying Mexican rule from 1822 to 1846
- The 4th quarter displays the Castile and León from Spain's coat of arms signifying Spanish colonial rule from 1542 to 1821
The coat of arms are surrounded by images of olives, grapes, and oranges, representing the 3 major crops of Los Angeles historically. The fruits are surrounded by a 77-bead rosary representing the part played by the Spanish missions in the early years of Los Angeles.