Flag of the State of Missouri

Support the state of Missouri and victims of the tornado that wreaked havoc on Joplin and neighboring areas by flying the Missouri State Flag this month.

Before 1913, Missouri did not have an official state flag. In 1908, however, the Daughters of the American Revolution set out to form a committee to create and design a flag for Missouri. Marie Elizabeth Oliver, who was the head of this committee and also the wife of Missouri State Senator Robert Burnett Oliver, ended up designing the official state flag. The flag of the State of Missouri was adopted on March 22, 1913, nearly 92 years after Missouri joined the Union the 24th state.

The Missouri State Flag contains important features that express national patriotism and also a sense of state pride and individuality. The background of the flag of Missouri contains three horizontal stripes: the top stripe is red, the middle stripe is white, and the bottom stripe is blue. The red, white, and blue colors obviously pay homage to the flag of the United States of America. In the Missouri state flag, however, the colors also have specific meanings representing core values of the United States and of the people of Missouri. The red stripe represents valor; the white stripe stands for purity; and the blue stripe represents justice, vigilance, and permanence.

In the center of the flag is the Great Seal of the State of Missouri. In the center of the seal is the Missouri coat of arms, which has special symbolic meaning. The crescent moon in the top left corner of the coat of arms reminds Missourians that their state was only the second state formed from the Louisiana Purchase and also reminds state residents that they have the power to make their future better than their past. The grizzly bear at the bottom of the seal represents the strength and courage of people of Missouri. Above the shield is a large star surrounded by 23 smaller stars, representing the hardships Missourians endured before the state was able to join the Union. There are also 24 stars on the outer edge of the seal.

The seal also contains two important Latin mottoes. The first phrase, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall,” reminds the people of Missouri of the importance of the United States. The second phrase, “Let the welfare of the people be the supreme law,” reminds Missourians that the state government’s purpose is to improve the lives of its residents.

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