Ohio State Flag

The flag, known as the "Ohio Burgee" is named for its unique swallowtail shape.
The flag, known as the "Ohio Burgee" is named for its unique swallowtail shape.

The flag of Ohio stands out as the only non-rectangular flag in the USA. It is also one of the only two non-rectangular shaped flags in the whole world. Another non-rectangular flag is that of Nepal which is triangular. The Ohio flag has been in official use for over 100 years having been adopted in 1902.

Description of the Flag

Its unique swallowtail shape earned the flag the name “Ohio Burgee” in 2002. The flag has 3 colors; red, white, and blue. It also has 17 stars and an “O” shape embedded in a triangle. The colors of the flag are similar to those of the Union Jack and the US flag. The flag was officially adopted on May 9, 1902.

History of the Ohio State Flag

Before 1901, Ohio did not have a state flag for more than 100 years. Before that, only the military had a flag which was similar to the official one but had an eagle at the center. In 1860, attempts to introduce a flag failed when James Garfield declared that the flag needed in Ohio was the USA national flag. In 1901, a design was adopted and became the official state flag up to date.

Creating the Ohio State Flag

Ohio State flag was designed by John Eisenmann in 1901. His idea of designing the flag was necessitated by the fact that he needed a flag to fly over the Ohio Building. Realizing that the state did not have a flag, Eisenmann created a special flag which was later adopted as the official state’s flag. Ohio became the 20th state to have an official state flag design.

Colors and Symbols of the Flag

The burgee shaped flag has three red and two white stripes running horizontally. The horizontal stripes represent the roads and waterways of Ohio. A blue triangle with 17 five-pointed stars, rests from the vertical left edge to the center. The blue triangle stands for the hills and valleys in Ohio state. 13 stars are grouped around a superimposed ‘O’ shape while 4 stars are on the peak of the triangle. The 13 stars symbolize the original states of the US. The 4 stars on the peak of the triangle represent the fact that Ohio was the 17th state. The ‘O’ shape symbolizes Ohio state.


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