Connecticut Flag

The Connecticut flag has perhaps one of the simplest designs of any American state flag. It consists of a simple design on top of a light blue background. In the middle of the Connecticut flag sits a white baroque shield along with three grapevines which each bear three bunches of purple grapes. The banner below the white shield of the Connecticut flag displays the state motto, “Qui Transtulit Sustinet” or, “He who transplants, sustains”.

Connecticut FlagThe design for the Connecticut flag is directly derived from the seal of Saybrook Colony, when it was established in the year 1639. In the original Saybrook Colony seal, there was a display of 15 grapevines along with a hand in the upper left hand corner displaying the words “Sustinet qui transtulit”. The Saybrook Colony seal was eventually transferred to Connecticut in the year 1644, when Connecticut bought the colony.

On October 15, 1711, the seal was altered again. The Connecticut governor and legislature altered the seal to contain only 3 grapevines instead of the original 15. This was meant to symbolize the original 3 Connecticut settlements of Windsor, Wethersfield, and Hartford.

The Connecticut General Assembly of 1897 provided an official description of the Connecticut flag. The official dimensions of the flag are meant to be 5′ 6” in length and 4’4” in width. The official colors of the Connecticut flag are an azure blue silk background with the armorial bearing in argent white silk. The design of the crest on the Connecticut flag should be displayed in natural colors and the border of the shield should be embroidered in gold and silver. Below the shield should be a white streamer, cleft at each end, bordered in gold and brown. The motto on the streamer should also be dark blue in color.

Colorado Flag

The Colorado flag consists of one of the simplest, yet perhaps most interesting designs of any flag in the Union. The Colorado flag consists of three horizontal stripes of equal width. The middle stripe is white, while the top and bottom stripes are colored blue. On top of the 3 stripes of the Colorado flag sits a red “C” filled with a golden circle.

colorado flag

According to numerous reports, the colors of the Colorado flag represent the following:

  • The blue stripes on the Colorado flag are meant to represent the Colorado skies
  • The golden circle inside of the red “C” is meant to represent the sunshine enjoyed by the state of Colorado
  • The white stripe across the middle of the Colorado flag represents the snowcapped mountains
  • The red of the “C” is meant to represent the earth

The Colorado flag was originally designed by a man named Andrew Carlisle Carson in 1911. On June 5th of that same year, this same Colorado flag was officially adopted by the state’s General Assembly. The official colors of the flag were not, however, decided upon by the General Assembly until 18 years later on February 29, 1929. It was eventually declared that the red and blue of the Colorado flag would be the same exact colors as the American flag. Years later, on March 31, 1964, the legislature further declared that the diameter of the gold disc should be equal to the width of the center white stripe.

One interesting thing to note about the Colorado flag is the fact that it is incorporated into all of Colorado’s state highway signs. Also, in a 2001 survey by the North American Vexillogical Association, the Colorado flag was ranked as the 16th best flag as compared by 72 other state, provincial, and territory flags in North America.

First Flag On The Moon

The first flag to be planted on the moon by human hands was an American flag. It was displayed by astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on July 21, 1969. Armstrong and Aldrin were members of the crew of the Apollo 11, the first manned spacecraft to land on the surface of the moon. It was Armstrong who first stepped onto the moon’s surface, uttering the now well-known line “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

American Flag on the moon

Armstrong and Aldrin worked together to plant the pole that displayed the American flag. Photos taken of this first flag on the moon have been the source of some controversy. The flag stands away from the pole, as if being lifted by a brisk breeze. Yet it’s fairly well known that there is no air in the moon’s atmosphere and therefore no way that a breeze could make the flag fly.

A clever trick on the part of Apollo 11 engineers created the illusion of a flag flying on the surface of the moon. They started with an off-the-shelf flag and then added a pocket to the top of the flag through which a collapsible horizontal rod was inserted. This collapsible rod was attached to the flagpole, making the flag stand away from the flagpole at a perpendicular angle. One small glitch occurred when the rod wouldn’t fully extend, making the flag look rippled rather than smooth. This ripple effect actually enhanced the illusion that the flag was waving in the breeze.

The effect was very successful, especially compared to the limp look the flag would have had without its horizontal support bar. The photo of the First Flag on the Moon is now remembered as one of the most significant flag images in the history of the United States. Today there are six U.S. flags on the lunar surface, each planted by a different Apollo mission.

What the American Flag Symbolizes

united-states-flag_2061_57140590I took a walk today in the cemetery near my home. A portion of the cemetery is dedicated to those who served in the American Armed Forces. What caught my attention was the fluttering of hundreds of flags. Each seemed to stand as a silent thank you for the service of each man and woman.

A flag is more than just a piece of cloth. It is a symbol of so much more. It stands for a country, a government, and a set of ideas. The American flag symbolizes laws laid out in the Constitution, freedoms given in the Bill of Rights, and the risk taken by the Declaration of Independence.

Contrary to popular belief, the colors of the American flag did not have any symbolic meaning when it was first adopted; however the colors of the flag-like portion of the Great Seal do have meaning. Charles Thompson, Secretary of the Continental Congress, stated, “White signifies purity and innocence, Red, hardiness & valor, and Blue . . . signifies vigilance, perseverance & justice.” It was quite fitting these colors should fly over the graves of those had given their all.

betsy-rossThe stars of the flag, however, do have symbolism. The resolution adopted on June 14, 1777, reads, “Resolved, that the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field representing a new constellation.” As the many stars formed one design, the many states formed one country.

united-states-flag_2061_57202944I continued walking past the flags and I noticed a few of them had fallen over. If they had just been an old rag or even one of the flower displays left on some of the graves, I would have ignored them. But they were flags, lying on the ground. They were a symbol of my country, of my freedom to walk in the sunshine and to say what I chose and to worship how I please.

I picked up the flags and set them back in their places. And I smiled in silent thanks.

Katie Hart