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Flag of North Dakota

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

North Dakota
UseCivil and state flag
Small vexillological symbol or pictogram in black and white showing the different uses of the flag
Small vexillological symbol or pictogram in black and white showing the different uses of the flag
Reverse side is mirror image of obverse side
Proportion26:33 (3:5 also in use)
AdoptedMarch 11, 1911 (1911-03-11) (standardized 1943)
DesignA bald eagle bearing in one talon an olive branch, and seven arrows in the other. In its beak a scroll bearing the motto E pluribus unum. Above are thirteen stars in parallel rows of 7 and 6, surmounted by a gold sunburst. Below is a scroll inscribed with the state's name. All on a blue field.

The flag of North Dakota represents the U.S. state of North Dakota. Adopted on March 11, 1911, its design is an almost exact replica of the regimental banner carried by the state's troop contingent in the Philippine–American War. The only difference being that the unit designation inscribed on the scroll was replaced by the state's name.

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The North Dakota flag's design was officially approved by the North Dakota Legislative Assembly on March 3, 1911, although the color was not specified at the time.[1] Legislation in 1943 brought the flag in line with the original troop banner.

Design and specifications

The greater coat of arms of the United States of America.

The flag's official proportions are 33:26, which is notably shorter than many other state flags. However, in practice, the flag is often produced and sold in 5:3 ratios.[2][3] The state code specifies that the flag must be made from blue silk or another material capable of withstanding the elements.[4]

Flag of the 1st North Dakota Infantry.

According to state law, the design of the flag mirrors that of the First North Dakota Infantry's standard during the Spanish–American War and the Philippine–American War.[4] This makes the flag similar to the greater Coat of Arms of the United States, and nearly identical to many other regimental standards. A banner with the national Coat of Arms was carried by all infantry regiments from 1890 to 1904, with the sole distinction being the unit designation inscribed on the scroll underneath the Coat of Arms.[5] The regimental colors of the North Dakotan troops, for instance, were adorned with the inscription "1st North Dakota Infantry".

1951 Flag Commission

The design recommended for adoption by the North Dakota State Flag Commission.

In 1951, the North Dakota State Flag Commission was established by S.B. No. 156 (1951 S.L., ch.303) to evaluate the state flag's design. Composed of five members appointed by the Governor, the Commission operated until December 31, 1952, with a mandate to thoroughly assess the flag's origins, dimensions, and its suitability as a symbol for North Dakota.

Regarding the flag's suitability as a symbol of North Dakota, the commission weighed both its historical significance and its alignment with the state's identity. While acknowledging its long-standing presence since 1911 and its association with North Dakota troops in historic conflicts, the commission noted that these factors alone did not inherently make it emblematic of the state. Examining the design's resemblance to the United States Coat of Arms, the commission emphasized the importance of distinctiveness. Despite minor variations, they deemed the flag too closely resembled the national emblem, suggesting that its symbolism belonged to the entire nation rather than any individual state.

In pursuit of a more fitting motif, the commission explored various avenues including historical figures, state nicknames, and indigenous symbols. However, each option presented challenges or lacked resonance with North Dakota's identity. Certain themes were also deemed either historically inaccurate or too regionally specific. Interestingly, the commission deemed the sources of symbolism that would be used for the state's coat of arms as unsuitable, leaving only the color palette as a point of agreement.

Through a process of elimination, the commission arrived at wheat and sunset as the most suitable symbols for the state flag. Wheat, as the primary crop and symbol of North Dakota's agricultural heritage, represented the state's economic backbone. While the breathtaking sunsets unique to North Dakota captured the state's natural beauty and awe-inspiring landscapes. The commission's recommendation thus crystallized into a proposal: a green flag adorned with golden wheat stems and heads, accompanied by a radiant golden sunset—a tribute to North Dakota's agricultural prowess and celestial splendor. This design aimed to encapsulate the essence of the state's identity while adhering to principles of originality, symbolism, and simplicity, as outlined by the commission's thorough examination of flag design principles and historical context.

The proposed changes were ultimately met with resistance. S.B. No. 265, incorporating the Commission's suggestions, was presented in the 1953 session but failed to pass.[6][7][8] [9]


See also


  1. ^ Flag of North Dakota,
  2. ^ "North Dakota State Flag". World Population Review. Retrieved July 3, 2022.
  3. ^ "The History of the North Dakota State Flag". US Flag Supply. Retrieved July 3, 2022.
  4. ^ a b "North Dakota State Flag Official Details". State Historical Society of North Dakota. Retrieved July 6, 2022.
  5. ^ Report of The North Dakota State Flag Commission
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ Report of The North Dakota State Flag Commission

External links

  • Information about the flag on the official website of the State of North Dakota
This page was last edited on 25 March 2024, at 15:56
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