Antigua was discovered by Columbus in 1493 and named after the Church of Santa Maria de la Antigua in Sevilla.
In 1632 the island was colonized by English settlers In 1671, Antigua became part of the newly formed colony of the Leeward Islands, whose governor remained on Antigua.
In 1816, the British Leeward Islands was dissolved, and a new governor was appointed in Antigua.
In 1871, the Governor of Antigua became the Governor of the Leeward Islands.
The Leewards Island Colony was dissolved in 1956 and on 3 January 1958 Antiqua joined the West Indies Federation. After the disintegration of this Federation on 3 May 1962, Antigua was involved in attempts to found another Caribbean Union. When the attempts failed Antigua was associated on 27 February 1967 with the United Kingdom as a autonomous member of the Commonwealth. The island has internal autonomy, the United Kingdom being responsible for foreign affairs and defense.
On 1 November 1981 it gained full independence. Queen Elizabeth II is head of State.
A seal of the Court of the Vice-Admiralty of Antigua of 1776 has been catalogued in the Exchequer and Audit Class of American Loyalists’ Claims and probably shows a foul anchor. No picture of this seal is available.
A modern seal of Antigua dates from the time of King Edward but may have predecessors from Victorian times.
Stamp with the seal of King Edward (1901-’10) forAntigua, 1903.
Seal: The royal achievement of the United Kingdom and the emblem of Antigua in base showing a seashore, a sugar mill and an aloe plant.
L.: EDWARDUS VII D.G. BRITT: OMN: REX F.D. IND: IMP / SIGIL. INSS. ANTIGUA ET BARBUDAE.
The first arms of Antigua depicts a view of the island, with an aloe-plant on the shore and a sugar mill
on a hill.
Arms: A hilly seashore, on the shore an aloe and on the hill a sugar mill, all proper.
27.02.1967 - 1981
An achievement was adopted by decree of 16 February 1967. For its design a competion was held, won by Gordon Christopher.
In the arms the waves are for the Caribbean and the sugar mill symbolizes the island. The tincture of the chief symbolizes the African origin of the population and the rising sun symbolizes the new era of independence.
The pineapple from the crest is from the former achievement of the Leeward Islands but it is augmened with hisbiscus flowers (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis - Malvaceae).
The supporters are deer from the island of Barbuda on which they form a turist-attraction.
They are standing on an island washed by tyhe sea on which a sugar can and an aloe-plant are growing. These are the main cash-crops of the islands.
The motto “Each Endeavouring all Achieving” was written by James H. Carrot of the Ministry of Commerce, Production and Labour.
The achievement is:
Arms.: Barry wavy of six Argent and Azure, a sugar mill on a grassy ground, proper; and a chief wavy Sable, a rising sun radiant Or.
Crest: On a helmet to the dexter, lambrequined Azure and Argent, a pineapple and four hibiscusflowers proper.
Supporters: Two deer, the dexter supporting a sugarcane and the sinister supporting an aloe, all proper.
Compartment: A grassy ground surrounded by waves of the sea Argent and Azure.
Motto: each endeavouring all achieving in black lettering on a ribbon Or, lined Gules.
š See illustration in the head of this essay
01.11.1981 - present
For Antigua and Barbuda the achievement of 1967 was maintained.
The arms of the Royal Police Force of Antigua consists of the royally crowned arms of Antigua surrounded by a garland and a ribbon with the name of the service.
After independence and the change of the name of the country the name of the service was changed into ROYAL POLICE FORCE ANTIGUA & BARBUDA.
© Hubert de Vries 2006-06-15
 Another example is in High Court of Admiraltry 32/319