Indianapolis, Indiana, City Flag History

Jan 13th, 2017

The city of Indianapolis was founded in 1816, and incorporated in 1847. It is the capital of Indiana. The city adopted an official city flag in May, 1915. It featured an X to represent downtown intersecting streets, a small copy of the city seal, and eight stars. Although adopted in 1915, it was not manufactured until 1960, and even then, the lack of interest caused it to be largely ignored.


A redesigned flag was officially adopted in 1963.


Indianapolis City Flag


The new Indianapolis city flag was designed by Roger Gohl, a Herron School of Art student. His design was the winning entry of a 1962 contest for a new city flag. The meanings assigned to the features of the flag include:


·         Dark Blue Quadrants – The city’s residential areas

·         Red – Driving urge for progress

·         Star – Soldiers’ and Sailors’ monument

·         Stars Central Location – The city’s status as capital of Indiana

·         White Circle with Red Field – Monument Circle (where the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ monument is located in the downtown area)

·         White Stripes – Vertical: North and South Meridian Streets; Horizontal: East and West Market Streets (The city’s main downtown streets). It is also said to represent its unofficial motto “Crossroads of America”


Gohl’s design is basically a rough sketch of the downtown area of Indianapolis.


Indianapolis’ flag is not popular within the city. Unlike other cities that take great pride in their flags, this city’s citizens rarely fly it. In fact, it has been said that most citizens do not know the city has a flag.


In 2004, the North American Vexillological Association conducted The American City Flag Survey. Indianapolis’ flag ranked 8th out of 150 flags. It was among the top ten best flag designs in the United States.


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