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The Indiana State Flag
The design of the Indiana State Flag is the result of a design competition sponsored by the Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, at the behest of the General Assembly, during the state’s 1916 Centennial celebration. Two hundred proposals were received and examined.
The winning design by Mooresville, Indiana artist Paul Hadley was adopted by the Indiana General Assembly with an effective date of May 31, 1917. Originally described as the state “banner”, the name was changed to “flag” by the 1955 General Assembly.
On a field of blue, the flag displays a torch, colored gold or buff, surrounded by an outer circle of thirteen stars and an inner circle of five stars.
The flaming torch stands for “..liberty and enlightenment.” The six rays radiating from the torch are meant to symbolize the expansive nature of those two concepts. The thirteen stars of the outer circle represent the thirteen original colonies of the United States. The five stars of the inner circle represent the next five states admitted to the Union. The largest star, positioned at the top of the torch and below the state name, represents Indiana, the nineteenth state.
Indiana Flag Law
The following information was excerpted from the Indiana Code, Title 1, Article 2.
TITLE 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS.
ARTICLE 2. STATE EMBLEMS.
CHAPTER 2. STATE FLAG.
Design and dimensions
Sec. 1. A state flag is hereby adopted, and the same shall be of the following design and dimensions, to-wit: Its dimensions shall be three (3) feet fly by two (2) feet hoist; or five (5) feet fly by three (3) feet hoist; or any size proportionate to either of those dimensions. The field of the flag shall be blue with nineteen (19) stars and a flaming torch in gold or buff. Thirteen (13) stars shall be arranged in an outer circle, representing the original thirteen (13) states; five (5) stars shall be arranged in a half circle below the torch and inside the outer circle of stars, representing the states admitted prior to Indiana; and the nineteenth star, appreciably larger than the others and representing Indiana shall be placed above the flame of the torch. The outer circle of stars shall be so arranged that one (1) star shall appear directly in the middle at the top of the circle, and the word “Indiana” shall be placed in a half circle over and above the star representing Indiana and midway between it and the star in the center above it. Rays shall be shown radiating from the torch to the three (3) stars on each side of the star in the upper center of the circle.
Township trustees, boards of school trustees and boards of school commissioners of the various school corporations of this state, and board of county commissioners of the several counties of the state, may procure a state flag for each school and for each courthouse under their respective supervision and cause the same to be placed conspicuously in the principal room or assembly hall and any courtroom of any such building or courthouse.
(Formerly: Acts 1917, c.114, s.1; Acts 1955, c.146, s.1.) As amended by Acts 1979, P.L.1, SEC.1.)
Military forces; public functions
Sec. 2. The banner described in section 1 of this chapter shall be regulation, in addition to the American flag, with all of the militia forces of the state of Indiana, and in all public functions in which the state may or shall officially appear.
(Formerly: Acts 1917, c.114, s.2.) As amended by Acts 1982, P.L.2, SEC.3.)
CHAPTER 3. DISPLAY AND DISTRIBUTION OF STATE FLAG.
State capitol; display
Sec. 1. A new and different Indiana state flag shall be displayed at the state capitol building on each and every day whenever practicable and feasible.
(Formerly: Acts 1967, c.162, s.1.) As amended by Acts 1979, P.L.1, SEC.2.)
Storing flags; request for flags
Sec. 2. It shall be the duty of the commissioner of the department of administration to receive and store every flag displayed pursuant to section 1 of this chapter following such display. Upon receipt of a request of a member of the Indiana general assembly, the commissioner shall forward to the individual, group, organization, association, or other entity indicated in the legislator’s request one (1) of the state flags displayed according to section 1 of this chapter. The commissioner shall forward such flags in the same order as the requests are received by him.
(Formerly: Acts 1967, c.162, s.2.) As amended by Acts 1982, P.L.2, SEC.4.)
Legislator’s request for flags
Sec. 3. Each and every member of the Indiana general assembly shall be entitled to request and have sent, during any one (1) period of three hundred (300) days, two (2) of the state flags displayed pursuant to section 1 of this chapter. In the event that any flags are not sent at the request of a legislator before December 31, 1967, or at the end of any subsequent period of three hundred (300) days, they shall be delivered to the lieutenant governor of the state of Indiana by the commissioner of the department of administration to be disposed of at the lieutenant governor’s discretion. Provided, however, that any member of the Indiana general assembly may purchase from the department of administration any other state flag which may have been manufactured in state industries at a price not to exceed the actual cost of each of said flags.
(Formerly: Acts 1967, c.162, s.3.) As amended by Acts 1982, P.L.2, SEC.5.)
(Repealed by Acts 1972, P.L.13, SEC.1.)
Display at state supported institutions
Sec. 5. Each and every institution supported in whole or in part by state funds shall display the state flag in a prominent place upon its property.
(Formerly: Acts 1971, P.L.2, SEC.1.)
Retiring and disposal of state flag
Sec. 6. A state flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed using the same method provided for the retiring and disposing of the flag of the United States under 4 U.S.C. 8(k).
(As added by P.L.163-2003, SEC.1. Amended by P.L.2-2005, SEC.1.)