Last modified: 2021-05-21 by rick wyatt
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26:33 image by Clay Moss, 29 January 2009
Based on design at vectorportals.com (site no longer active)
In 1890, five stars were added, representing Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Washington, bringing the total number of stars on the U.S. flag to 43. There were thirteen stripes representing the thirteen original colonies.
From the governor's page for kids:
"The design for the original Idaho state flag goes back to the battle flag which the First Idaho Infantry used in the Philippines in 1899 during the Spanish American War. The battle flag contained a picture based upon the Idaho Territorial Seal, with the name of the regiment under the picture on a blue field. By legislative act of March 12, 1907, a silk flag with a blue field, 5 feet by 6 inches fly was created.. 4 feet 4inches on pike is bordered by gilt fringe 2 1/2 inches wide with the State Seal of Idaho in the Center. The words "State of Idaho" were embroidered in gold block letters two inches high on a red band below the Seal. "The seal in the center of the flag symbolizes Idaho main industries -- mining, agriculture and forestry -- and highlights the state's natural beauty. It was created in 1890 by Emma Edwards Green, the only woman to design a state seal."
"The original flag created in 1907 was displayed in the State Capitol building for many years. It began to look ragged from wear, and was placed in the Idaho Historical Archives. When a Meridian Elementary fourth grade class realized what had happened to the flag, they began a fundraising effort to restore it. $5,000 later, the original Idaho flag was cleaned, mended, preserved and placed on permanent display in the Idaho Historical Museum in Boise."
46-801. STATE FLAG. A state flag for the state of Idaho is hereby adopted, the same to be as follows: A silk flag, blue field, five (5) feet six (6) inches fly, and four (4) feet four (4) inches on pike, bordered with gilt fringe two and one-half (2 1/2) inches in width, with state seal of Idaho twenty-one (21) inches in diameter, in colors, in the center of a blue field. The words "State of Idaho" are embroidered in with block letters, two (2) inches in height on a red band three (3) inches in width by twenty-nine (29) inches in length, the band being in gold and placed about eight and one-half (8 1/2) inches from the lower border of fringe and parallel with the same.
Joe McMillan, 11 February 2000
The pattern of scroll was that used on U.S. Army military colors at the time
the flags were adopted.
Joe McMillan, 24 January 2006
image by Clay Moss, 29 January 2009
Although the flag of Idaho has officially a ratio of 26:33, virtually all Idaho flags made for public and Idaho government consumption are made in standard American manufacturers sizes of 2:3, 5:8, and 3:5 respectively. This image represents an Idaho flag in my collection. It is 4x6 feet, made of cotton, and was manufactured by Dettra Flag Company. It flew at the Lewiston, Idaho Courthouse in the late 1980's. I think it is an interesting piece because there is no gold ring and lettering etc. around the badge. I'm not sure why Dettra made their Idaho flags differently in those days, but I have seen more than one of these.
Clay Moss, 29 January 2009
59-1005A. AUTHORSHIP AND DESCRIPTION OF GREAT SEAL OF STATE. The inscription of authorship of the great seal of state shall appear as follows: 1891 EMMA EDWARDS GREEN - PAUL B. EVANS rev. 1957. The new inscription shall be located in the same place and manner as the previous inscription, using more space as is necessary. In gratitude for and as a tribute to Emma Edwards Green for her design of the Idaho state seal is her description of the seal in her own words:
"Before designing the seal, I was careful to make a thorough study of the resources and future possibilities of the state. I invited the advice and counsel of every member of the legislature and other citizens qualified to help in creating a seal of state that really represented Idaho at that time. Idaho had been admitted into the Union on July 3rd, 1890, and on March 14, 1891, adopted my design for the great seal of the state of Idaho. The question of woman suffrage was being agitated somewhat, and as leading men and politicians agreed that Idaho would eventually give women the right to vote, and as mining was the chief industry, and the mining man the largest financial factor at that time, I made the figure of the man the most prominent in the design, while that of the woman, signifying justice, as noted by the scales; liberty, as noted by the liberty cap on the end of the spear, and equality with man as denoted by her positions at his side, also signifies freedom. The pick and shovel held by the miner, and the ledge of rock beside which he stands, as well as the pieces of ore scattered about his feet, all indicate the chief occupation of the state. The stamp mill in the distance, which you can see by using a magnifying glass, is also typical of the mining interest of Idaho. The shield between the man and woman is emblematic of the protection they unite in giving the state. The large fir or pine tree in the foreground in the shield refers to Idaho's immense timber interests. The husbandman plowing on the left side of the shield, together with the sheaf of grain beneath the shield, are emblematic of Idaho's agricultural resources, while the cornucopias, or horns of plenty, refer to the horticultural. Idaho has a game law, which protects the elk and moose. The elk's head, therefore, rises above the shield. The state flower, the wild Syringa or Mock Orange, grows at the woman's feet, while the ripened wheat grows as high as her shoulder. The star signifies a new light in the galaxy of states. ... The river depicted in the shield is our mighty Snake or Shoshone River, a stream of great majesty. In regard to the coloring of the emblems used in the making of the great seal of the state of Idaho, my principal desire was to use such colors as would typify pure Americanism and the history of the state. As Idaho was a virgin state, I robed my goddess in white and made the liberty cap on the end of the spear the same color. In representing the miner, I gave him the garb of the period suggested by such mining authorities as former United States Senator George Shoup, of Idaho, former Governor Norman B. Willey of Idaho, former Governor James H. Hawley of Idaho, and other mining men and early residents of the state who knew intimately the usual garb of the miner. Almost unanimously they said, "Do not put the miner in a red shirt." "Make the shirt a grayish brown," said Captain J.J. Wells, chairman of the seal committee. The "Light of the Mountains" is typified by the rosy glow which precedes the sunrise."Joe McMillan, 11 February 2000
image by Joe McMillan, 21 April 2000
The state military crest, which is the crest used in the coats of arms of units of the National Guard, as granted by the precursor organizations of what is now the Army Institute of Heraldry. The official Institute of Heraldry blazon is
"An elk's head caboshed proper."
Joe McMillan, 21 April 2000