The Flag of the District of Columbia has three red stars above two red bars with a white background. George Washington’s family coat of arms inspired the flag for Washington, D.C.. The Coat of Arms features the same three red stars above two red bars and the shield is white.
For heraldic reasons, the stars should be called mullets. Washington D.C. was without an official flag and they flew several unofficial flags, such as the flag of the D.C. National Guard. Congress established a commission in 1938 to choose an official and original design. There was a public competition and the submission of Charles A.R. Dunn was chosen. He had first proposed his design in 1921; however, with blue stars or “mullets.”
The flag of Washington, D.C. was first flown on October 23, 1938; however, it did not have widespread usage for another 20 or so years. In 2002, the council for D.C. considered a proposal to change the flag in protest of the District’s lack of voting rights in Congress. The new design would have added the language: “Taxation Without Representation.” Additionally, it would have added the letters “D.C.” to the center star on the flag. The proposal did pass in council; however, it was never signed by then mayor Anthony A. Williams.
In a 2004 poll, the design of the Flag of Washington D.C. was voted the best design among United States city flags by members of the North American Vexillological Association. Previously in 2001, the flag had placed eighth.