Flag of Arkansas

Last updated

Flag of Arkansas.svg
Use Civil and state flag IFIS Equal.svg
AdoptedFebruary 26, 1913 (modifications made in 1923, 1924, and 2011)
DesignA rectangular field of red, on which is placed a large white diamond, bordered by a wide band of blue. Across the diamond is the word 'Arkansas' and four blue stars, one above, three below the word. On the blue band are placed 25 stars.
Designed by Willie K. Hocker

The flag of Arkansas, also known as the Arkansas flag, consists of a red field charged with a large blue-bordered white lozenge (or diamond). Twenty-nine five-pointed stars appear on the flag: twenty-five small white stars within the blue border, and four larger blue stars in the white diamond. The inscription "ARKANSAS" appears in blue within the white lozenge, with one star above and three stars below. The star above and the two outer stars below point upwards; the inner star below points downwards. The flag was designed by Willie K. Hocker of Wabbaseka, a member of Pine Bluff Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.



In 1912, the Pine Bluff Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution decided to present the newly commissioned battleship USS Arkansas with an official state flag. Upon learning from Secretary of State Earle W. Hodges that there was no state flag, the society members urged him to hold a contest for the design of one. A committee was appointed, and it asked for designs to be submitted for consideration. Hocker’s design was "a rectangular field of red, on which is placed a large white diamond, bordered by a wide band of blue. Across the diamond is the word 'ARKANSAS'," placed there by request of the committee," and the blue stars, one above, two below the word. On the blue band are placed 25 white stars." [1] This flag was adopted by the Arkansas legislature on February 26, 1913. [2]

In 1923, the legislature added a fourth star, representing the Confederate States of America. This fourth star was originally placed so that there were two stars above the state name and two below; this was to include the Confederate States alongside France, Spain, and the United States. Since this disturbed the other two meanings of the original three stars, the legislature corrected this in 1924 by placing the fourth star above "ARKANSAS" and the original three stars below it, as it is today. The 1924 design was confirmed as law in 1987 by Act 116, signed by Governor Bill Clinton. [3]

Flag of Arkansas (Hocker).svg Flag of Arkansas (1913).svg Flag of Arkansas (1923).svg Flag of Arkansas (1924-2011).svg
FIAV proposal.svg Hocker flag proposalFIAV historical.svg State flag (1913–1923)FIAV historical.svg State flag (1923–1924)FIAV historical.svg State flag (1924–2011)

In 2011, Act 1205 (formerly House Bill 1546) was signed by Governor Mike Beebe adding some more details to the flag. In the terms of colors, the red and blue used on the Flag of Arkansas are Old Glory Red and Old Glory Blue. The Act also stated that flags purchased by the Secretary of State must be manufactured in the United States. [4] [5]


The flag's elements have a complex symbolism. According to the 1987 state law defining the flag, [6] the diamond represents Arkansas' status as "the only diamond-bearing state in the Union". (Crater of Diamonds State Park was the only diamond mine in North America at the time, before more recent discoveries in Colorado and Montana.) The number (25) of white stars around the border of the diamond represents Arkansas' position as the 25th state to join the Union. The star above "ARKANSAS" represents the Confederacy, to which Arkansas was admitted on May 18, 1861. The design of the border around the white diamond evokes the saltire found on the Confederate battle flag.

The three stars below "ARKANSAS" have three separate meanings: [2]

The statute states that the two outer, upward-pointing stars of the three are considered "twin stars" representing the "twin states" of Arkansas and Michigan, which it claims were admitted together on June 15, 1836. However, that part of the statute contains two inaccuracies:

In 2001, a survey conducted by the North American Vexillological Association (NAVA) placed the Arkansas state flag 45th in design quality out of the 72 Canadian provincial, U.S. state, and U.S. territory flags ranked. [8]

Pledge of Allegiance

The law defining the flag also defines a text to be used in saluting the flag: "I salute the Arkansas Flag with its diamond and stars. We pledge our loyalty to thee." [9]

See also

Related Research Articles

Flag of the United States National flag

The flag of the United States of America, often referred to as the American flag or U.S. flag, is the national flag of the United States. It consists of thirteen equal horizontal stripes of red alternating with white, with a blue rectangle in the canton bearing fifty small, white, five-pointed stars arranged in nine offset horizontal rows, where rows of six stars alternate with rows of five stars. The 50 stars on the flag represent the 50 states of the United States of America, and the 13 stripes represent the thirteen British colonies that declared independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, and became the first states in the U.S. Nicknames for the flag include the Stars and Stripes, Old Glory, and the Star-Spangled Banner.

Flag of Oregon Flag of the American state of Oregon

The flag of the state of Oregon is a two-sided flag in navy blue and gold with an optional gold fringe. On the front is the escutcheon from the state seal and on the reverse is a gold figure of a beaver, the state animal. Oregon is the only U.S. state to feature different designs on either side of its flag.

Flag of Alabama Flag

The current flag of the state of Alabama was adopted by Act 383 of the Alabama state legislature on February 16, 1895:

The flag of the State of Alabama shall be a crimson cross of St. Andrew on a field of white. The bars forming the cross shall be not less than six inches broad, and must extend diagonally across the flag from side to side." – (Code 1896, §3751; Code 1907, §2058; Code 1923, §2995; Code 1940, T. 55, §5.)

Flag of Missouri State flag

The flag of Missouri, often referred to as the Missouri flag, is the state flag of the U.S. state of Missouri. It consists of three equal horizontal tribands of red, white, and blue stripes, with the arms of Missouri in the center. Designed by Mary Elizabeth Oliver, the red and white stripes, as is traditional, represent valor and purity, respectively. The blue represents three things: the permanency, vigilance, and justice of the state. The three colors also highlight the French influence on the state in its early years. The Missouri flag was established on March 22, 1913, when governor Elliot Woolfolk Major signed the State flag act making it official.

Flags of the Confederate States of America National flag representing the Confederate States of America

Three successive designs served as the official national flag of the Confederate States of America during its existence from 1861 to 1865.

Flag of Georgia (U.S. state) flag of the state of Georgia, United States

The current flag of the State of Georgia was adopted on May 8, 2003. The flag bears three stripes consisting of red-white-red, featuring a blue canton containing a ring of 13 white stars encompassing the state's coat of arms in gold. In the coat of arms, the arch symbolizes the state's constitution while the pillars represent the three branches of government. The words of the state motto, "Wisdom, Justice, and Moderation", are wrapped around the pillars, guarded by a male figure dressed in colonial attire from the American Revolutionary War. Within the arms, a sword is drawn to represent the defense of the state's constitution with an additional motto, In God We Trust, featured below these elements. The ring of stars that encompass the state's coat of arms represents Georgia as one of the original Thirteen Colonies. The design principle is based on the First National Flag of the Confederacy, which was nicknamed the Stars and Bars.

A lozenge (), often referred to as a diamond, is a form of rhombus. The definition of lozenge is not strictly fixed, and it is sometimes used simply as a synonym for rhombus. Most often, though, lozenge refers to a thin rhombus—a rhombus with two acute and two obtuse angles, especially one with acute angles of 45°. The lozenge shape is often used in parquetry and as decoration on ceramics, silverware and textiles. It also features in heraldry and playing cards.

Flag of North Carolina State flag

The flag of the state of North Carolina was adopted by statute of the North Carolina General Assembly in 1885. It is defined in the general Statute 144-1 as follows:

That the flag of North Carolina shall consist of a blue union, containing in the center thereof a white star with the letter "N" in gilt on the left and the letter "C" in gilt on the right of said star, the circle containing the same to be one-third the width of the union. The fly of the flag shall consist of two equally proportioned bars; the upper bar to be red, the lower bar to be white; that the length of the bars horizontally shall be equal to the perpendicular length of the union, and the total length of the flag shall be one-third more than its width. That above the star in the center of the union there shall be a gilt scroll in semi-circular form, containing in black letters this inscription "May 20th 1775," and that below the star there shall be a similar scroll containing in black letters the inscription: "April 12th 1776".

Flag of Florida flag of the U.S. state of Florida

The flag of Florida, often referred to as the Florida flag, is the state flag of the U.S. state of Florida. It consists of a red saltire on a white background, with the state seal superimposed on the center. The flag was first adopted as the state flag of Florida in 1868. The flag's current design has been in use since May 21, 1985, after the Florida state seal was graphically altered and officially sanctioned for use by state officials. In 2001, a survey conducted by the North American Vexillological Association (NAVA) placed Florida's state flag 34th in design quality out of the 72 Canadian provincial, U.S. state and U.S. territorial flags ranked.

Flag of Delaware flag

The flag of Delaware consists of a buff-colored diamond on a field of colonial blue, with the coat of arms of the state of Delaware inside the diamond. Below the diamond, the date December 7, 1787, declares the day on which Delaware became the first state to ratify the United States Constitution. The colors of the flag reflect the colors of the uniform of General George Washington.

Flag of Indiana Flag of the state of Indiana

The flag of Indiana was designed by Paul Hadley and officially adopted by the state of Indiana on May 11, 1917. It was the state's first official flag and has remained unchanged since then except for the creation of a statute to standardize the production of the flag.

Flag of Maine flag

The flag of the State of Maine features Maine's state coat of arms on a blue field. In the center of the shield, a moose rests under a tall pine tree. A farmer and seaman represent the traditional reliance on agriculture and the sea by the state. The North Star represents the state motto: dirigo" .

Flag of Mississippi flag of the U.S. state of Mississippi

The flag of Mississippi is the state flag of the U.S. state of Mississippi. It consists of three equal horizontal tribands of blue, white, and red, with a red square in the canton bearing a blue saltire, bordered with white and emblazoned with thirteen small, white, five-pointed stars. The 13 stars on the flag represent to the "original number of the states of the Union", though are sometimes thought to be for the states that seceded from the Union, and Missouri and Kentucky whom also had both Confederate and Union governing bodies. The canton portion of the flag also corresponds to the design of the Civil War-era battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, which over time has come to represent the Confederate States of America. The current design was adopted in 1894, and remains the only state flag to still incorporate the Confederate battle flag.

Flag of Tennessee State flag

The Flag of Tennessee consists of an emblem on a field of red, with a strip of blue on the fly. The emblem in the middle consists of three stars on a blue circle. The central emblem portion of the flag appears in the logos of some Tennessee-based companies and sports teams. Examples include the First Horizon Bank and the Tennessee Titans.

The flag and the coat of arms of Johor are state symbols of Johor, Malaysia. Like other states of Malaysia with Malay royalties, the state symbols of Johor are influenced by Johor's royalties, as well as Islam and the political and natural features of the state.

Willie Kavanaugh Hocker was an American schoolteacher and designer of the current Arkansas flag.

Coat of arms of Pennsylvania

The coat of arms of Pennsylvania is an official emblem of the state, alongside the seal and state flag, and was adopted in 1778. The flag of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania consists of a blue field on which the state coat of arms is embroidered. The Pennsylvania coat of arms features a shield crested by an American bald eagle, flanked by horses, and adorned with symbols of Pennsylvania's strengths—a ship carrying state commerce to all parts of the world; a clay-red plough, a symbol of Pennsylvania's rich natural resources; and three golden sheaves of wheat, representing fertile fields and Pennsylvania's wealth of human thought and action. An olive branch and cornstalk cross limbs beneath—symbols of peace and prosperity. The state motto, "Virtue, Liberty and Independence", appears festooned below. Atop the coat of arms is a bald eagle, representing Pennsylvania's loyalty to the United States.

Modern display of the Confederate battle flag Display of flags used by the Confederate States of America since 1865

The modern display of flags used by and associated with the Confederate States of America started in response to the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s and continues into the present day. Their revival began with Senator Strom Thurmond's Dixiecrats in reaction to growing public support for racial equality, alongside opposition to civil rights in 1948.

Flag of San Antonio

The flag of San Antonio is the official municipal flag of San Antonio, Texas. The sketch of the flag's design, drawn by Spanish-American War veteran William W. Herring, was dated May 28, 1933. The design saw significantly more usage than the official flag, but was never officially adopted until 1976. The current flag is a slightly modified version of Herring's design.

Flag of Columbus, Ohio

The flag of Columbus is the official municipal flag of Columbus, Ohio. Its current design is a yellow, white, red vertical triband with the city seal on a blue field. Officially, the flag was adopted in 1929, although it is unknown if the flag was ever flown when it was first adopted.


  1. Hooker, Jane M. (February 28, 2018). "Willie Kavanaugh Hocker (1862–1944)". Encyclopedia of Arkansas .
  2. 1 2 3 Arkansas Secretary of State's educational website
  3. "As Governor, Bill Clinton Kept 'Confederate' Star On The Arkansas Flag". The Huffington Post. June 22, 2015. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
  4. "Bill Information" . Retrieved August 1, 2012.
  5. "Flag bill flies | Arkansas News". Arkansasnews.com. Archived from the original on July 22, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2012.
  6. Ark. Code Ann. (1987), Section 14101; cited in B.F. Shearer and B.S. Shearer (2002), State Names, Seals, Flags, and Symbols, Greenwood Press, p. 54
  7. Ware, David (January 14, 2019). "Official State Flag". Encyclopedia of Arkansas .
  8. "2001 State/Provincial Flag Survey - NAVA.org" (PDF). nava.org.
  9. "A.C.A. § 1-4-102" . Retrieved November 26, 2019.

Further reading