West Virginia Flag
Representations of current state and territory flags in a full range of bright, durable
colors. Nylon (digital dyed) or 2-ply polyester material (screen dyed) to meet the most demanding commercial and residential uses. All outdoor flags are finished with polyester heading and brass grommets. The poly econo flag is perfect for short term use, events, project etc. Please call for 2 ply poly or larger size prices. 877-352-4755
The citizens of the mountainous western parts of Virginia had long thought themselves neglected by the Virginia State Government and pushed the issue in the initial days of the Civil War. When Virginia decided to secede from the Union, representatives from the western counties saw an opening and stormed out of the Virginia Convention of 1861.
A few months later, the residents of the western counties voted for statehood.
West Virginia was admitted to the Union as a Free State with the agreement that current conditions of slavery would be phased out. President Lincoln approved the statehood bill for West Virginia on January 1, 1863. On April 20, 1863, West Virginia was proclaimed a State, effective 60 days later on June 20, 1863.
In the midst of the Civil War, turmoil was everywhere and it wasn’t until September that West Virginia adopted its official State seal, its coat of arms the most prominent component of the State flag.
Another prominent component of the State flag is West Virginia’s State flower, big laurel (Rhododendron maximum), adopted in 1903.
The following year, 1904, St. Louis, Missouri staged an exposition, “The Louisiana Purchase Exposition,” also know as the Saint Louis World’s Fair.
West Virginia needed to send a flag to the exposition to represent itself. A white flag with blue borders that featured the State flower on the obverse side (front) and the West Virginia coat of arms on the reverse side (back) was created. This flag was not an official representative of the State of West Virginia when it appeared at the exposition, but on February 24, 1905, the West Virginia Legislature made it so.
Evidently, this design sparked some discontent and, two years later on February 25, 1907, changes were officially approved. The coat of arms was moved to the obverse side (front) of the flag and the big laurel was moved to the reverse side (back) of the flag. Additionally, a red ribbon, reading “State of West Virginia” was added below the coat of arms.
Of course, it was found that producing a flag with a difference between the obverse side and the reverse side was not practical. It was expensive. To remedy the situation, big laurel, the coat of arms, and the red ribbon were combined to create a suitable display to appear on both sides of the flag.
The West Virginia Legislature approved Senate Joint Resolution No. 18 on March 7, 1929. Resolution No. 18 described the West Virginia State flag the flies over the Capitol today.
Senate Joint Resolution No. 18
WHEREAS, The legislature of West Virginia, by joint resolution passed on the twenty-fourth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and five, adopted a state flag, prescribing the design thereof; and
WHEREAS, The design so adopted is impractical of manufacture, making the cost of purchase thereof prohibitive to the schools of the state and others desiring to purchase said flag; and
WHEREAS, There has been worked out a design embodying all of the features of the first West Virginia state flag so adopted, but so designed as to be practical of manufacture at a reasonable cost to those desiring to purchase the same; and
WHEREAS, It seems desirable to change the design of the West Virginia state flag; therefore, be it
RESOLVED BY THTE LEGISLATURE OF WEST VIRGINIA:
That the Legislature of West Virginia hereby adopts a State Flag of the following design and proportions, to-wit:
The proportions of the flag of the State of West Virginia shall be the same as those of the United States ensign; the field shall be pure white, upon the center of which shall be emblazoned in proper colors, the coat-of arms of the State of West Virginia upon which appears the date of the admission of the State into the Union, also with the motto, ‘Montani Semper Liberi’ (Mountaineers Are Always Free). Above the coat-of-arms of the State of West Virginia there shall be a ribbon lettered, ‘State of West Virginia,’ and arranged appropriately around the lower part of the coat-of-arms of the State of West Virginia a wreath of Rhododendron maximum in proper colors. The field of pure white shall be bordered by a strip of blue on four sides. The flag of the State of West Virginia when used for parade purposes shall be trimmed with gold colored fringe on three sides and when used on ceremonial occasions with the United States ensign, shall be trimmed and mounted in similar fashion to the United States flag as regards fringe, cord, tassels, and mounting.”