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What inspired the symbols and design of the Chicago Flag?

Nov 16, 2020

C01C-001-Johnin Flag


Three white bands, two blue stripes and four unique six-pointed red stars. Simple but not without thought.

Let's let Wallace Rice explain:

 

 White 

"White, the union of all the colors, to symbolize the union of all the races in the city of Chicago." RICE, Chicago Flag Designer
  • Top white band: "This white stripe stands locally for the North Side, nationally for the Atlantic Coast, and terrestrially for the countries east and north of the United States."

  • White center band (More than twice as wide as one of the blue bands): "This white bar stands locally for the West Side, nationally for the Great Central Plain dominated by Chicago, and terrestrially for the United States, in which the two stars signify Chicago is the second city, as well as the second city of the New World."

  • Bottom white band: "This white stripe stands locally for the South Side, nationally for the Pacific Coast, and terrestrially for the countries west and south of the United States."

Blue

"Blue, the color of the lake and river, of distant mountains, and of the oceans." RICE, Chicago Flag Designer

  • Upper blue band: "This blue stripe stands locally for the North Branch of the (Chicago) River, nationally for the Allegheny Mountains, and terrestrially for the Atlantic Ocean and Great Lakes." Rice also noted, "This stripe, with the other stripe and the two stars (on the original flag), indicates that Chicago is the fourth city of the globe."

  • Lower blue band: "This blue stripe stands locally for the South Branch of the (Chicago) River, nationally for the Rockies and Sierras, and terrestrially for the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico."

Chicago Flag Star in redStarsChicago six pointed starChiacgo Flag Star in red

Originally there were only two stars, pushed to the left, leaving room for more to be added in the future.
Original Chicago Flag with only two stars on the left side
Each star symbolizes an event and each point adds even more to the story.