The new state flag is official

Today is the official changeover day for the Minnesota state flag. I like it!

I especially like it because I just learned what the meaning of the original design — that cluttered, ugly illustration of farmers and Indians — was intended to be an illustration of Manifest Destiny.

Minnesota Legislature adopted that flag and seal in 1893.

A poem written by the wife of one of the artists who painted the seal said it was a representation of Manifest Destiny. intended to be an allegory of oncoming progress and civilization, and the removal of native people from the landscape.

“For the artists who created the seal, this is intended to be an allegory of oncoming progress and civilization, and the removal of Native people from the landscape,” said Minnesota Historical Society Director of Research William Convery.

If I’d known that, I would have been much more irate about it. This changeover has a similar significance to the destruction of confederate flags and monuments to rebel generals.


  1. NitricAcid says

    I don’t even care what the intended symbolism in the seal was. A seal-on-a-sheet is a shitty flag. And if you write your name on your flag, please break all your fingers and give the job to someone else.

  2. birgerjohansson says

    The simplicity of the flag is nice.
    If bigots think the color is too lavender-ish that is an extra plus.
    The Eurovision song contest got its first non-binary winner half an hour ago.

  3. ANB says

    Lots of ugly state flags still out there. Alabama, Arkansas, and Florida still surprisingly (/s) have Confederate-like ensigns.

  4. NitricAcid says

    Alabama has a simple saltire, and is an excellent flag. Don’t let the confederates ruin saltires for everyone.

  5. Ridana says

    I love that flag. The colors are beautiful, the design is simple and elegant…makes me want to be a Minnesotan almost. I think Canada’s and MN’s flags are now my world favorites. Good job!

  6. says

    I grew up with that Washington state flag. The green is nice and appropriate, the rest sucks.

    I think that state’s flag ought to include a salmon, or a tree, just to annoy the eastern half of the state, which is all sagebrush and rocks.

  7. stuffin says

    The new Minnesota flag is simple yet expressive. New jersey flag is just a copy of the state seal. Tme to update all these state flags from 2 centuries ago.

  8. Larry says

    Our flag in California has on it the grizzly bear, our state animal, whom we wiped out of the state exactly 100 years ago. The bear emblem was included on the flag during the Mexican/American war of 1846 with the idea that it would scare Mexican authorities of the time. So we’ve got that going for it, as well.

  9. says

    I really like “Old Doug”, the Cascadian flag. Being on another continent, I have no skin in the game, but if nothing else, I’d like to see an independent Cascadian, just for that flag.

  10. Nemo says

    This changeover has a similar significance to the destruction of confederate flags and monuments to rebel generals.

    Speaking of which, unfortunately: “A Virginia school board voted Friday to restore the names of Confederate military leaders to a high school and an elementary school, four years after the names were removed” —

    Three steps forward, two steps back…

  11. tedw says

    @#4: You can add Georgia to the list of states who based their flag on the Confederate flag; and this was in 2003, when you think people would know better. (We won’t talk about the disaster of a flag we had from 2001-2003.)

    And Dr. Myers, you might want to reconsider using the term “rebels” when referrring to the Confederate military. That word often has a positive connotation (and is certainly viewed that way by lost-causers). I like “racist traitors”; much more accurate.

  12. seachange says

    #9 Larry

    Nnnope. There are a number of reasons the bear was chosen and that was not one of them.

  13. Erp says

    @8 Stuffin New Jersey’s background color, buff, is distinctive but the seal has to go. Maybe Minnesota’s change may spur a few other states

  14. GMBigKev says

    @NitricAcid – I see you two are have seen CGPGrey’s video.
    I agree (mostly) with the seal on a sheet being a bad flag. The only exception being Virginia cause their seal contains murder and nudity.

  15. says

    First, I agree with tedw @12: “rebel” is too generic (and romantic) a term for people who fought for an established order (“states’ rights” and a slave-labor system) against progressive legal peaceful change.

    And second, maybe, given Virginia’s current slow drift to the left, maybe we should change our flag to have a black woman standing over a defeated guy in Klan sheets. (The current guy is wearing Roman kit, which is really lame and out-of-date as a symbol of “tyranny.”)

  16. NitricAcid says

    @15 Actually, no, I haven’t. I’ve just been involved with heraldry for a long time.

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