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Flag of Louisiana

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Title: Flag of Louisiana  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Seal of Louisiana, Country data Louisiana, Pelican-badge.png, Louisiana, Symbols of Louisiana
Collection: Flags of Louisiana, Symbols of Louisiana, United States State Flags
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Flag of Louisiana

Use Civil and state flag
Proportion 7:11
Adopted Original design 1912 (current version of design November 22, 2010)[1]
Design Image of a pelican feeding her young with her own blood on a field of azure. Below the pelican, a ribbon displays "Union Justice Confidence"

The flag of Louisiana consists of a heraldic charge called a "pelican in her piety," representing a mother pelican wounding her breast to feed her young from the blood. The mother pelican's head and outspread wings covering the three pelican chicks nested below her form a stylized fleur-de-lis, another emblem of similar significance often depicted in Louisiana. This symbol, emblematic of Christian charity (and Catholicism), is also found on the state seal. On the flag it is depicted above a ribbon with the state motto: "Union, Justice, and Confidence". The current flag was adopted in November 2010, a revision of the original pelican design of 1912.

During the 19th century it was traditional in Louisiana flags and the state seal for the "pelican in her piety" to have three drops of blood on her chest.[2] However, in later years the tradition (on both the state flag and seal) had been haphazardly followed, which was noticed by an eighth-grader at Vandebilt Catholic High School in Houma who brought this to the attention of his state legislator.[2] The issue was resolved in April 2006, when the Louisiana State Legislature passed a bill (House Bill 833/Act 92)[3] which requires three drops of blood to be depicted on the pelican used in both the state's flag and seal. The new state flag, featuring a new design, was unveiled during swearing-in ceremonies of new state officials. In November 2010, the flag was revised again, featuring a more detailed pelican than the previous one, as well as removing the word "and" from the ribbon.[1]


  • History 1
  • See also 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4


Prior to 1861, the state of Louisiana had no official flag, though a flag similar to the present one was often used unofficially.

In January 1861, after declaring secession from the United States but before the formation of the Confederate States of America, Louisiana unofficially used a flag based on the flag of France with seven stars on the blue stripe.

In February 1861, Louisiana officially adopted a flag with a single yellow star in a red canton, with thirteen red, white and blue stripes. This was used through the end of the American Civil War, though the Pelican flag and Flag of January 1861 remained in use unofficially.

On November 22, 2010, a new version of the flag bearing an updated version of "A Pelican In Her Piety" was unveiled. The new flag was a result of a bill passed during the 2006 legislative session legally requiring a standardized flag and to combat the issue of several alternating versions of the 1912 flag being in circulation.[1]

Flag of French Louisiana
Flag of French Louisiana
Flag of King and Armed Forces of Spanish Empire, used in the Florida Parishes and Spanish Louisiana
Flag of King and Armed Forces of Spanish Empire, used in the Florida Parishes and Spanish Louisiana
Flag of Louisiana Ordinance of Secession Convention
Flag of Louisiana Ordinance of Secession Convention
Unofficial flag of January 1861
Unofficial flag of January 1861
Flag of Louisiana (of February 1861 CSA)
Flag of Louisiana (of February 1861 CSA)
Pelican flag of 1861, used concurrently with 1912 flag
Pelican flag of 1861, used concurrently with 1912 flag
Flag used from 1912 to 2006
Flag used from 1912 to 2006
Interim flag used from 2006 to 2010
Interim flag used from 2006 to 2010

See also


  1. ^ a b c Anderson, Ed (November 22, 2010). "New Louisiana state flag with bleeding pelican is unfurled". The Times-Picayune. Louisiana: New Orleans Net, LLC. Archived from the original on November 24, 2010. Retrieved November 24, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Eagle-eyed eighth-grader prompts La. flag legislation, an April 2006 article from The Times-Picayune Archived September 30, 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ - 2006 Regular Session, from the website of the Louisiana State Legislature

External links

  • Official website
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