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Wisconsin State Flag

The first Wisconsin state flag was designed in 1863.

Wisconsin State Flag

The Wisconsin state flag features a dark blue field with a centrally placed state coat of arms. The name "Wisconsin" is written in white above the coat of arms, while the year "1848," is written below the coat of arms.

The coat of arms features the Wisconsin's state shield, which is surrounded by a larger shield with four quadrants. The four quadrants in the larger shield contain a plow, pick and shovel, arm and hammer, and an anchor. The shield is flanked by two men, a sailor and a minor, each holding tools of their trade. Above the shield is a badger and above the badger, a scroll with the motto "Forward." Below the shield is a cornucopia and a pyramid of thirteen lead ingots. The coat of arms also features the US motto "E PLURIBUS UNUM," which means "Out of many, one."

Symbolism of the Flag

The flag's blue field stands for vigilance, perseverance, loyalty, truth, and justice, and the white color of the flag symbolizes honesty and peace. The coat of arms highlights the state's natural resources, as well as the significant contributions of the pioneers. For instance, the miner and the sailor represent the type of activities common in the state during 1863. The miner represents the early miners of Wisconsin, while the sailor represents the shipbuilding industry, as well as Wisconsin's maritime heritage. The tools featured on the shield are also significant. The pick and shovel represent the mining industry, while the arm and hammer symbolize the manufacturing industry. The anchor stands for the navigation, waterways, and lakes of Wisconsin. The plow stands for the state's rich soils and agriculture. The badger is Wisconsin's state animal. The badger also honors the early lead miners in Wisconsin, who were nicknamed "badgers" because they used to dig holes in the hillsides and live underground. The badger is also a symbol of protection and tenacity. The cornucopia stands for prosperity and abundance, while the pyramid of thirteen lead ingots represents the mineral wealth of the states, as well as the original thirteen US states.

The state flag of Wisconsin also features the US motto, therefore demonstrating its loyalty to the Union. The year "1848" is written below the shield, signifying the year Wisconsin was admitted into the Union.

History of the Flag

The first Wisconsin state flag was designed in 1863, when the state regimens demanded a flag to fly during the Civil War. In 1913, state statutes specified the design of the flag. In 1979, the flag was further modified to add the "Wisconsin" above the shield, and the year of the state’s admission into the union below the shield. The flag was officially adopted by the state legislature on September 9, 1979.

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