California State Flag

The California state flag features the state animal - the California grizzly bear.
The California state flag features the state animal - the California grizzly bear.

The State Of California is well known for its historical Bear Flag. The flag features a grizzly brown bear on a white background. The grizzly bear faces to the left and appears to be walking on a patch of Irish green grass. At the upper left-hand corner of the flag, above the head of the bear is a red five-pointed star. The words the CALIFORNIA REPUBLIC are written just below the bear. At the very bottom of the flag is a thick red stripe.

Colors of the California Flag

The California state flag features a total of five colors inclusive of the white background. The other colors are maple sugar, old glory red, seal, and Irish green. The flag is among the few state flags in the United States that does not feature the color blue. Apart from being used in the background of the flag, the white color has been used in accenting the claws of the bear. Old glory red is used in the thick red stripe at the bottom, the star at the left-hand corner, and in highlighting the bear's tongue. Irish green highlights the grass plot. The bears itself is shed in the seal color. The seal color is also used in shading the words California Republic as well as highlighting darker tufts in the plot of grass. Maple sugar is used in the lighter shading of the bear.

Symbolism of the Flag

The white background of the California state flag is a symbol of purity. The bear is the symbol of strength and represents the many bears that are seen in the state. The grizzly bear is also the official state animal. The five-pointed red star is a symbol of sovereignty and an imitation of the lone star of Texas. The red stripe at the bottom of the flag is a symbol of courage of the people of California.

History of the Flag

The precursor of the California state flag was first raised at Sonoma on June 14, 1846, during the Bear Flag Revolt by a group of American settlers who revolted against the Mexican rule, declaring California as an independent and Free State. This first version of the flag was designed by Peter Storm. However, the exact creation of the version of the flag is unclear. The flag was flown up to July 9, 1846, after which it was replaced by the American flag when the settlers learned that America and Mexico were at war. The men who first flew the flag came to be famously referred to as the Bear Flaggers.

The first official form of the current day flag of the state of California was designed by William Todd. The flag was adopted on February 3, 1911, by the California State Legislature through a bill signed by Governor Hiram Johnson. In 1953, a bill signed by Governor Earl Warren standardized the design and specification of the flag.


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